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W.Va. Catholic Church to Publish Third-Party Financial Audit

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The Catholic Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston has announced new efforts to improve financial transparency and accountability. The announcement this week comes in the wake of reports of excessive spending by the former Bishop Michael Bransfield.

The Diocese released a statement announcing that an independent, third-party auditing firm, CLA (CliftonLarsonAllen) LLP, would conduct a thorough audit of all diocesan accounts. The release says the results will be published in their entirety.

The diocese reports that a policy review is underway since it was revealed that former bishop Bransfield bypassed current policies and procedures meant to guard against financial mismanagement. 

The diocese says some measures to increase transparency and accountability have already been made. The church mentions an already-introduced independent third-party reporting system which would allow anyone to report financial mismanagement, sexual harassment or abuse by members of the clergy, the local bishop, lay employees or volunteers of the Diocese.

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