Northampton County made eight duplicate payments to four different vendors during the period between Nov. 1, 2017 and October 31, 2018. This is one of the findings of a recent audit of the county's checks and vendors performed by Lead Auditor Antony Sabino and Controller Richard "Bucky" Szulborski. The total overpayments amount to $4,623.91. They include five overpayments by the Court Administration,
two by the Coroner’s Office, and one by Gracedale. The duplicate payments were returned.
Although the county has software in place to prevent this problem, the Accounting Manager pointed out that many vendors use the same invoice number each month. This produces many false duplicate payment alerts, making it difficult for the Disbursements clerks to identify actual duplicate payments and increasing the risk that duplicates will be paid. Changes are being made to the software to make this less likely.
The Controller also checked for vendors using a blank address or multiple vendors using the same address. No fictional vendors were identified. What was found, however, is three instances in which one or more payments were made to vendors with addresses that matched employee addresses. "We investigated all three and found that valid reasons existed for all of them," said Sabino.