UPDATE: Council allows administration to pay overdue jail medical bills, may reconcile sheriff's overrun at mid-year

mowen@ledger-enquirer.comJuly 30, 2013 

The Muscogee County Sheriff's Office just dumped $129,000 in jail medical bills on the Consolidated Government, with the promise of close to $800,000 more, Columbus Councilors learned during a work session this morning.

The overdue bills, which arrived at the city Finance Department on Monday date back to March, April, May and June. Some vendors were calling the city about the overdue bills, City Manager Isaiah Hugley said.

The bills were held in the sheriffs department, not by the finance department, Mayor Teresa Tomlinson said.

Several Councilors expressed concern over the mount of bills being submitted after the fiscal 2013 was closed.

In the end, councilors voted to allow the administration to pay the bills and to reconcile the budget-breaking totals in October when council revisits all departmental budgets at mid-fiscal year. Meanwhile, Sheriff John Darr is scheduled to appear before Council at its Aug. 20 meeting to discuss the excess spending.

Council originally planned to schedule a special meeting next week with Darr during its normal first-Tuesday proclamation and resolution meeting, but decided to wait until the 20th.

Darr is out of town on vacation, so unavailable to meet with Councilors today, Tomlinson said.

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