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Munhall officials take positive steps to get back on track

| Thursday, June 19, 2014, 2:56 a.m.

After a year plagued with immense fiscal and political upheaval, Munhall borough officials are taking positive steps to get back on a steady track.

Council on Wednesday night unanimously accepted the long overdue 2011 and 2012 general fund audit reports as recently completed by Mark C. Turnley, CPA, for a flat rate of $6,500 per audit. Once the audits are officially approved, they will be made available to the public.

Former borough manager Matt Galla ­— who faces federal charges for allegedly embezzling $230,000 from taxpayers — reportedly lied about completing the two missing audits, which cost the borough more than $354,000 in RAD money and put Munhall in a dire financial situation at the beginning of this year. In the time since, Munhall hired Robert Callen as the new borough manager,

Council president Dan Lloyd said the report that came back with the newly completed audits specified things borough officials did wrong and also provided steps to fix them.

“It wasn't a good report, but we knew it wasn't going to be,” Lloyd said. “I've never seen as extensive a management letter of criticisms as the one we got with our 2011 and 2012 audits. But I will say that probably 30 percent or more of the criticisms occurred in the past and they've already been corrected. The rest are being corrected now and the outlook is good.”

Council authorized Callen to prepare a funding application to the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development to obtain a consultant to do an early intervention analysis of the borough's affairs.

“As we all know, we've had very difficult financial times during the past year or two and we don't know at the end of the year how that's all going to fare,” Callen said. “We will hopefully get approval from the state for funds to obtain a consultant who will go through a six- to eight-month process of actually turning us upside down and coming up with recommendations that will hopefully return Munhall back to fiscal and operational solvency.”

Tim Karan is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at tkaran@tribweb.com.

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