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Metrolink executive quits after report cites accounting problems

A high-ranking  Metrolink executive resigned over the weekend following a scathing report that revealed accounting irregularities and raised questions about the regional railroad’s financial management.

Metrolink officials said Monday that Nancy Weiford, the commuter line’s chief financial officer and treasurer, stepped down after a special committee assigned to look into the railroad’s business practices revealed its findings at Friday’s board meeting. They declined to comment further on Weiford’s departure, saying that personnel matters are confidential.

Reached by The Times, Weiford declined to comment.

In a statement Monday, railroad officials said “Metrolink takes very seriously the recent findings of Metrolink’s Ad Hoc Finance Committee regarding the agency’s financial management. As one of the nation’s largest commuter rail systems, Metrolink has been, and continues to be, committed to sound financial practices.”  

The internal report found that Metrolink has inadequate cash on hand to meet its current and near-term expenses, certain funds were improperly co-mingled and record-keeping is so poor it is difficult to track the railroad’s cash flows.

Because of a lack of sound accounting practices, the report states, board members are unable to make informed decisions or accurately understand Metrolink's financial situation.

“There are very significant issues. The committee report shows deficiencies in the fundamental operating systems for our financial management,” said Mike Hennessey, vice chairman of the Metrolink board and a board member for the Orange County Transportation Authority.

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-- Dan Weikel

 
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