Erath County Judge Alfonso Campos files petition to have treasurer removed from office.


Erath County Judge Alfonso Campos

By SARA VANDEN BERGE


Erath County Judge Alfonso Campos has filed a petition to have county treasurer Kimberly Barrier removed from office following a closed door meeting with commissioners on Monday.


The petition cites “incompetency” as the reason behind the move and states that Barrier is not properly reconciling bank accounts or posting money to the county ledgers in a timely fashion.

The petition also alleges that Barrier has failed to pay benefits for county employees on time with accounts becoming delinquent for up to five months.


District Court Judge Jason Cashon has reportedly recused himself from the matter and a temporary judge is expected to make a ruling on the petition.

Beneath the Surface News has learned that if the judge finds merit in the petition, Barrier could be removed from office immediately before a jury trial takes place.


BTN News has reached out to Campos and Barrier for comment, but neither has returned the calls.

THE TIMELINE


The petition outlines months of trouble beginning in June 2020 when the county's internal auditor sent a report to commissioners outlining several issues.


The report stated that Barrier was six months behind in bank reconciliations, investments were not being properly managed, receipts were not being posted to the county books for months at a time and insurance billings had become delinquent.


Campos and commissioners then had a formal meeting with Barrier to give her a chance to correct the issues.

Ten months later, in April 2021, the county's internal auditor sent another report to commissioners stating that bank reconciliations were still not being completed on time and that the treasurer's office was five months behind.


In May 2021, external auditors also found similar problems in the treasurer’s office and determined that bank accounts were not being reconciled properly and contained “large errors.”


“Discovery of these large errors and the fact bank reconciliations and revenue postings are still not timely is resulting in a second Management Letter to the Commissioners Court from the External Auditors. The second letter will be much more severe due to previous recommendations from the Auditors not being followed,” the petition states.

“A Management Letter relating to our annual County financial statements can cause the County's credit rating to decline and result in high interest rates if it were necessary to borrow money in the future. It can also cause the county to not receive grants if it is determined we don't manage Federal, State and County money properly.”


A source told BTS News that a judge is expected to make a ruling on the petition any day now.