As the top financial officer in county government, the Washington County Treasurer has the following basic responsibilities to the public. These responsibilities are explained in greater detail under Title 30-A of the Maine Revised Statutes, Annotated, sections 171-174, but include:
Deposit and investment of county funds,
Receipt of costs in favor of the State,
Payments out of Treasury,
Enforcing payment of county taxes.
Generally speaking, the Treasurer may deposit or invest county funds in any bank or savings institution organized under Maine law, or any national banking institution established under United States law.
Payments out of the County Treasury may be made to defray the county’s expenses, as directed by the county commissioners. These expenditures must also be itemized, and made a part of the public record.
Accounting & Record Keeping
Under State law, Washington County’s Treasurer must keep records and transactions of the county’s financial dealings on file, in a manner consistent with standards set forth by the Department.
The Treasurer must also report all receipts and payments to the county commissioners. (30-A, MRSA, sec 181)
Every year the Treasurer must provide the county commissioner with a thorough accounting of (30-A, MRSA, sec 182):
the county books,
an account of the county’s money and effects,
an account of all federal money for county jails.
The Treasurer must also work with the county commissioners to provide an “Annual Statement of Financial Standing” which covers in detail the financial status of the county, and which is made available through the County Clerk’s office.
This statement includes (30-A, MRSA, sec 183):
Division of money among county accounts,
A statement of federal funds the county has received.
Other facts and statistics that may be needed to make a truthful assessment of the financial condition of Washington County.
Every year Washington County undergoes a full financial audit based on “generally accepted auditing standards”.
The commissioners may choose to have Washington County’s books audited by the Department of Audit or by a certified public accountant.
In any case, the Department of Audit must receive a final copy of the audit for their files. (30-A, MRSA, sec 951)
Legally, Washington County’s audit must include the
A management letter,
A letter of transmittal,
Independent auditor’s report on county’s financial statements,
All county financial statements and other information required by governmental auditing practices.
Copies of the county audit must be available to the public at the County Commissioner’s office and at each municipal office or city hall across Washington County.
Election & Term of Office
Qualifications: Like all elected county officials, the Treasurer must reside in Washington County. Neither the Attorney General of Maine, the district attorney, clerk of courts, sheriff or his deputies may serve as Treasurer. (30-A, MRSA, sec 151)
Election: The meetings for the election of treasurers shall be conducted and returns made as provided in Title 33, section 602.
Once a Treasurer has been elected, the Governor notifies the county commissioners of the election. (30-A, MRSA, sec 152)
The treasurer’s term begins the following January 1st, and runs for four years.
Bond: Once elected, the Treasurer must agree to be bonded at a sum agreed to by the county commissioners. (30-A, MRSA, sec 153)
Disclaimer: Information presented on this page was summarized from the Maine Revised Statutes, Annotated, and is presented as is, and therefore does not constitute legal advice. For legal advice, please consult a qualified attorney.