Statement about P-cards seems to conflict with audit

Purchase card programs have become commonplace in both local and federal governments. However, there are always those who will misuse the cards. Penalties must be established based on the severity of the improper use of cards. In the federal government, personnel have lost their jobs as a result of improper purchase card use.

The statement in Keith Regan’s June 27 Viewpoint in The Maui News that “the audit (report) did not uncover specific fraud, waste or abuse” in the P-card program seems to be in conflict with the audit report, 16-01, of June 2017. Finding No. 1 of the report, on Page 7, states “Fraud, waste or abuse may have occurred” and that “the transactions of one employee were under active criminal investigation.”

Granted, this finding doesn’t conclude that misuse occurred, but certainly Mr. Regan’s statement seems somewhat at odds with the report.

Finding No. 2 indicates that purchases exceeding established P-card limits were “broken down” in order to bypass established procurement procedures; an abusive process.

And then, under “Subsequent Event” is the discussion of the use of the P-card by a county department director for the purchase of plane tickets for family members. Is it fraud or abuse?

Hopefully, the Maui County Department of Management will continue to improve oversight of the P-card program as stated in the Viewpoint and response to the audit.

Michael K. Nye

Maui Meadows