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State report finds Polk County clerk paid employees for work they didn’t earn

From NewsChannel 9: Tennessee's top financial investigator says Polk County's Circuit Court Clerk paid several employees wages they didn't earn. T

From NewsChannel 9: Tennessee’s top financial investigator says Polk County’s Circuit Court Clerk paid several employees wages they didn’t earn. That ended up costing taxpayers more than $123,000.


Scroll down to read the full report from Tennessee Comptroller Jason Mumpower.


That report says the clerk allowed several employees to submit timesheets claiming 40 hours per week.


But it says the clerk regularly gave employees one day off each week.


Furthermore, the clerk closed the office for one hour during lunch each weekday prior to January 2022.


At the direction of the clerk, Mumpower says the employees only regularly worked 28 hours per week (calculated below):


40 hours (reported hours) – 8 hours (one day off) – 4 hours (lunch off clock) = 28 hours

Polk County’s personnel policy says a full-time employee must work at least 32 hours per week.


Full-time employment is required to receive annual leave, sick leave, compensatory time, and an option for insurance coverage by the county.

Mumpower’s report breaks down all of the benefits received but not earned:


  • Time not worked: $27,024.44
  • Unsupported comp time: $1,943.51
  • Annual leave taken: $358.75
  • Sick leave taken: $347.05
  • Insurance provided: 93,391.91

Total: $123,065.66


Another issue Mumpower says he found is that the clerk’s office improperly used a signature stamp of a Polk County judge for two expungement orders. It’s a practice Mumpower says should stop.

Internal controls over the use of signature stamps are inherently weak, and state law does not provide authority for their use,’ Mumpower says.

We’ve reached out to the clerk’s office for comment, and we’ll update this story if and when we hear back.


Read the comptroller’s full report below: