Public Record Request: Beaumont General Ledger
Names and Social Security Numbers have been added to the General Ledger? Who Authorized that Stupid Breach of Security?
At the January 2, 2018, Beaumont City Council Meeting Finance Director Melana Taylor spoke in lengths regarding all the General Ledger Reports she can produce now that she has the new software.
However; all of the General Ledgers from July, 2016, to the Present have been removed from the City’s website and the City still refuses to release a June, 2016, General Ledger.
For the past SEVENTEEN MONTHS the City of Beaumont has proclaimed that they could not release the June, 2016, General Ledger until the 2016 Audit was completed.
The 2016 Audited Financial Statements are now completed, so on December 28, 2017, the City of Beaumont came up with a new excuse:
“This document requires additional time to make available to the public. Redaction is required to protect Names and Social Security Numbers of individual listed in the detail.”
Names and Social Security Numbers have been put in the General Ledger?
How did Names and Social Security Numbers get put into the General Ledger?
Why are Names and Social Security Numbers in the General Ledger?
The Accounting Department should not even have access to people’s Social Security Numbers. The Human Resources Department should be protecting the Employees’ SSI Numbers, but Beaumont has no HR Department.
Elizabeth Gibbs-Urtiaga used to be the front from the HR Department, but now it’s Kari Mendoza, who’s from the Police Department and who’s Husband worked for Beaumont Electric when they were operating the Company out of the City.
Kari Mendoza also signs the Bond Debt Service Statements because the City does not have two Employees in the Finance Department.
This illustrates the basis of the problem in Beaumont: there’s not one person on staff that knows how businesses or government agencies operate. There are no checks and balances because not one member of the Executive Staff is qualified to hold their position.
Public Records’ Request:
General Ledger from June, 2016, through December 31, 2017. General Ledger should include Transaction Number, Date, Accounting Code, Description, Debit, Credit, Amount, and Memo.
The ability for Accounting Software to print General Ledgers with selected columns was invented 15-20 years ago. This is not a new invention. The old software was able to print General Ledgers as well.
All Communication regarding inputting Names and Social Security Numbers in the General Ledger.
Name and Job Title of Employee that input Names and Social Security Numbers in the General Ledger.
Name and Job Title of Executive Officer that gave direction to Employee to input Names and Social Security Numbers in the General Ledger.
Name and Job Title of Employee in Human Resources Department that released the Names and Social Security Numbers to the Finance Department.
What Date was City Manager Todd Parton made aware that Names and Social Security Numbers had been added to the General Ledger?
All Communication to/from City Manager regarding his direction and his Staff’s communication with him regarding Names and Social Security Numbers being added to the General Ledger.
Response from Melana Taylor:
I never said Social Security numbers. There is sensitive data such as litigation case identification information in Fund 120, and sensitive name and case numbers in the Evidence Fund 860. Within the general fund is additional information that has to be redacted – specifically, the reimbursements received from the insurance carrier for those individuals who are out on workers compensation leave. Their names are on the detail line items, and it is my understanding that the information related to active or inactive workers comp cases are treated like litigation and cannot be released to the public.
The redaction issue is a bigger deal only because I don’t have the ability to mark out stuff myself. I can give you all of those general ledgers if you want to work on them. We don’t have the staff to do it manually. It would be similar to what I sent you for June 2016, but probably not as big.
So is this an official PRR?