There is virtually no one who knows that the Proviso Township Treasurer’s Office exists. Or what function it serves. 

Now, wisely, the District 209 Proviso Township High Schools are turning a spotlight on this obscure, and possibly obsolete, layer of government. The school district’s new chief financial officer, Todd Drafall, is rightly frustrated with the treasurer’s office and for various reasons. Firstly its accounting procedures raise questions. The school district and its auditors spent months trying to lock down a firm number on a special district account held by the treasurer. That’s crazy.

Then there is the laughably backward technology employed by the treasurer. The office does not transmit documents electronically, only by carrier. It does not pay vendors electronically. It does not segregate the financial ledgers of the 14 Proviso school districts which are bound to this office by law. 

That is why the Proviso High School board recently authorized Drafall to investigate whether it is possible to disentangle itself from the township treasurer. We know from other communities we cover that it is possible. But it is complex and requires many hoops to be jumped. 

Before we offer our support, we’d note that District 209 itself is now under state oversight for its own balled up financial history. Despite all the many flaws of the township treasurer’s office does it serve, even inadvertently, as a check on the high school district’s historically bad financial management? We look forward to hearing from the state oversight panel on this issue.

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