Hunter Auditor, Treasurer, Charged With Embezzlement
The auditor and treasurer in the town of Hunter, Oklahoma has been charged with embezzlement after a state auditor’s report found nearly $40,000 in mismanaged funds.
Court documents claim Donna Rainey paid herself nearly $30,000 in excess payroll across 74 checks over a four year period. The state auditor’s report also found 83 fraudulent mileage reimbursements totaling nearly $8,000 that were not mentioned in the criminal filing.
Rainey was booked into the Garfield county jail and released on $5,000 bond, however, she may be facing additional scrutiny as a nearby town of Kremlin where she holds the same Clerk/Treasurer position is also the subject of a financial mismanagement investigation.
State Auditor Cindy Byrd tells News9 consolidating the positions of clerk and treasurer is not an uncommon cost saving measure in small towns across the state, however, she says that often leads to financial mismanagement.
“One of the things we hear them say is ‘we can’t afford to hire enough people.’ However, we have outlined many steps that these small towns can implement in making sure all financial transactions have some level of approval,” Byrd said. “You cannot just put all the responsibility into one person and not show up and make sure things are being operated in accordance with the law.”
The state embezzlement charge carries a one to 10 year prison sentence and a fine up to the amount allegedly embezzled. Rainey is due back in Garvin County District Court Thursday, July 25.