A closer look into Atlantic Beach's finances

The financial balance sheets given during Monday night's Atlantic Beach Town Council meeting show the town is nearly $330,000 in the hole.

To help us understand what the records show, NewsChannel 15 took the balance sheets provided by the town to certified public accountant James McIlrath.

The balance sheets carry no weight until certified by an independent auditor, he said.

"It is merely the assertion of the management which is the council, the mayor and the people who work for the town of Atlantic Beach."

At Monday's meeting, Calvin Blanton of Raleigh, North Carolina presented the records. In 2008, The North Carolina State Board of Certified Public Accountant Examiners revoked Blanton's CPA license.

That's because he pled guilty to failure to file income taxes for both his company and himself.

Atlantic Beach Mayor Pro Tem Carolyn Cole said Blanton disclosed that information. But the town hired him anyway for his experience, said Cole.

Cole said the town needed someone to do the balance sheets, because the town has not submitted an audit to the SC State Treasurer since fiscal year 2006.

Having the balance sheets will give the auditor a guideline, said McIlrath. But the balance sheets show $138,000 in bank deposits with no record of how that money got there.

McIlrath said that brings the accuracy of the records into question.

"They don't know where it came from. That would certainly be a concern as an auditor," he said.

The town's finances will be audited, said Cole. But no date has been set for an audit.

Because Atlantic Beach has not turned in four year's worth of annual financial audits to the State Treasurer's Office, they are missing out on state funding.