As Moniteau County Collector Ellen Ash navigates her first year in the office, a recently released state auditor's report will help her update some of the office procedures.
Missouri State Auditor Nicole Galloway is required by statute to review a county collector's books when a vacancy takes place, as with Cheryl Duvall retiring May 31, after six years as county collector and a total of 25 years working in that office.
"I want to do things the right way," Ash said. "It's good procedure to have the state auditor take a look and make recommendations. If something can be done differently, now's the time to do it, while I'm learning the job anyway."
The state auditor gave the Moniteau County Collector's Office and the property tax system a "fair" rating.
The office's books balanced, and it was fulfilling its responsibilities to the taxpayers.
The auditor's concerns addressed mostly methods of recording and tracking transactions, as well as adequate review by the county clerk and county commission.
Ash, who was appointed July 5, said she will heed the advice of the state auditor.
For example, the audit recommended a computer capable of printing an immediate receipt for taxpayers should be installed at the Moniteau County Collector's office counter. She has gone to observe other county collector's offices in the state to see how they operate their front counters.
Ash said the change from by-hand record-keeping at the counter has the potential to save customers time, as well as help the office function more safely and efficiently.
"To me, the best way to know how to set it up is to go and see how other people do it," she said.