Jefferson County Commission to conduct forensic audit of court clerk’s expenses

JEFFERSON COUNTY, Fla. (WCTV) – Jefferson County Clerk and Comptroller of Courts Kirk Reams came under scrutiny this week after discovering that Reams had written two checks for $ 5,000 from his Jefferson County Republican Party office.

The incident sparked a heated debate at Thursday night’s Council of Committees meeting as they addressed the matter.

The meeting attempted to resolve a lot of confusion surrounding the checks written by County Clerk to Comptroller of the Court Kirk Reams, but left most of the questions unanswered.

Reams began the discussion by apologizing for making the county look bad, and said the Jefferson County Republican Party had refunded his sponsorship money. Still, some residents couldn’t believe this happened in the first place.

“When I saw these expenses, I was amazed that an official [have] the nerve to go out and give $ 10,000, ”said Russ Rothman, vice chairman of Jefferson’s Democratic executive.

The county coordinator said confusion over funding was brought to the attention of the board during a review of spending vouchers.

“When these vouchers were sent, an error occurred and some checks entered the voucher system that should never have reached the County Commissioners Council, as they were in fact court expenses or judicial funds, ”explained Jefferson County Coordinator Parrish Barwick.

Residents still feel that public funds have been embezzled and have even called for extreme measures to be taken.

“I think he should be removed from his post. The governor has the power to do it, the governor did it to the same person in 2017, and I think the board should have made a motion to contact the governor, provide him with the dossier and ask him to withdraw man, ”one shared. Resident of Jefferson County.

And due to this pressure from residents and past issues with the Reams controller, the board decided to request a full audit.

“Basically what came out of the meeting is that we’re going to do it, a forensic check, the clerks are going to do it on his desk and we’re actually going to do one on the county commissioners in our expenses. also to make sure everything is consistent and flawless, ”said Stephen Walker, Chairman of the Jefferson County Board of Directors.

Some residents were very upset during the meeting by the lack of action and the responses they received, but council hopes the forensic audit can help clarify matters.

WCTV asked Controller Reams for an interview after the meeting to discuss the expenses. He replied “without comment”.

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