The Hempstead School Board is defending itself in a lawsuit filed by its former superintendent (Photo by Bob Giglione)

A firm hired by Hempstead School District last year for $85,000 to conduct a forensic audit of its financial records released an initial report with its “preliminary findings” to the District in early January.

The memorandum of findings by Plante Moran – a highly respected firm that conducted the forensic audit of the Detroit public Schools – has not been released to the public, but the Long Island Press obtained a copy of it. The district extended the firm’s contract last week.

Findings by Plante Moran auditors include:

· 295 payroll distributions to 129 individuals who were not active employees at Hempstead Schools at the time. “It is unclear why individuals would still be receiving pay after their termination dates,” the memorandum stated.

· Several employees listed with birthdates of Aug 31, 2017, several employees with ages exceeding 80 years old and one employee with a birthdate of 2013.

· A match between the employee master file and the vendor master file identified several “vendors who shared addresses with employees.”

· “Many” employees who received more than $3,000 in overtime pay in a month and a few who received between $4,200 and $8,150 in overtime pay in a month.

· A vendor that received $2.8 million over the last 5 years had provided numerous instances of duplicative billings – including invoices by a single tutor providing home instruction services to multiple students at the same time; and multiple appointments without approval signatures, which is required of parents for the claims.

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