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The staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Les Miller wants to know if Hillsborough County can audit independent Children's Board

Hillsborough Commissioner Les Miller asked the county attorney Wednesday for a legal opinion on whether the county can order an audit of the Children's Board.

The Children's Board of Hillsborough County has been in the spotlight recently for handing out no-bid contracts to companies with relationships with that board's employees. Scrutiny began after CEO Luanne Panacek had a friend spread holy oil around the office after a particularly contentious meeting with her board.

Miller asked acting county attorney Don Odom whether the county could conduct a management and financial audit of the agency.

The Children's Board is actually a separate government from the county's, with its own board of directors and property tax, money from which it controls. It grants money to social service groups that provide programs for children.

Commissioner Kevin Beckner, the county's appointee to the Children's Board, says he has already asked a similar question of the Clerk of the Circuit Court's office, which performs audits for the county now. He was told that the county could offer to pay for an audit, but that the Children's Board would have to accept the outside scrutiny.

 

[Last modified: Wednesday, May 16, 2012 5:37pm]

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