Columbia has a new internal auditor

Thursday, March 27, 2008 | 10:09 p.m. CDT; updated 10:13 a.m. CDT, Saturday, July 19, 2008
John Blattel

COLUMBIA — The city of Columbia has hired a new internal auditor.

City Manager Bill Watkins said John Blattel, a veteran from the Missouri State Auditor’s Office, will begin May 12. He will draw a salary of $58,000 plus benefits.

In his new post, Blattel said he “will be reviewing the city’s practices to make sure the city government is running effectively and efficiently.”

It’s an essential role, Watkins said.

“Every organization, especially one of our size, needs to have an internal, independent person to make sure we’re doing things in the best possible way,” Watkins said. “There can always be another pair of eyes.”

Blattel has worked with the Missouri State Auditor’s office for more than 30 years and is currently the director of performance audits there. He earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Southeast Missouri State University and is a certified public accountant and a certified fraud examiner.

The position of internal auditor has remained vacant since last summer, when the previous auditor resigned for personal reasons.

Since last year, Watkins said the job will be restructured so the internal auditor can work more closely with the Finance Advisory and Audit Committee, a citizen panel appointed by the City Council.

“The position currently reports directly to the city manager, and I think we need to open that up,” Watkins said. “It will help us better utilize the expertise that John Blattel gives us.”

Blattel, who currently lives in Jefferson City, said he supports the restructuring.

“They can provide other input in areas that need review and give the most benefit from my position,” he said.

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