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COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Embattled South Carolina Comptroller General Richard Eckstrom will resign subsequent month after a $3.5 billion accounting error within the year-end monetary report he oversaw.

The state’s high accountant will go away the elected submit he has held for 20 years on April 30, in line with a duplicate of the resignation letter obtained by The Related Press.

“I’ve by no means taken service to the state I really like or the roles to which I’ve been elected flippantly, endeavoring to work with my colleagues, from constitutional officers to members of the Common Meeting, to be a powerful defender of the taxpayer and steward of their hard-earned tax {dollars},” Eckstrom wrote within the March 23 letter to South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster. “They deserve nothing much less.”

The blunder’s revelation final month introduced mounting scrutiny. Home lawmakers known as for an impeachment inquiry. The Senate panel investigating the error issued a damning report final week that instructed Eckstrom resign or face removal “for willful neglect of obligation.” As not too long ago as final Wednesday, Eckstrom had stated he wouldn’t give up.

Senators’ report rested accountability for the mapping error — which grew in the course of the state’s transition to a brand new inside data system from 2011 to 2017 — solely with Eckstrom. State officers testified that Eckstrom ignored auditors’ yearslong warnings of a “materials weak point” in his workplace and flawed money reporting.

Eckstrom has stated the Annual Complete Monetary Report overstated the state’s money place by double counting the cash despatched to high schools and universities. The error went unsolved till a junior staffer mounted the error this fall.

Officers have stated the misstatement didn’t influence the precise state price range. However lawmakers initially alarmed by Eckstrom’s inconsistent testimony slammed the failure to meet one among his major constitutional duties of publishing an correct account of state funds.

The fallout for the state company that usually flies below the radar is predicted to proceed. A Senate subcommittee not too long ago approved a joint resolution that might let voters resolve whether or not the comptroller normal ought to proceed as an elected place or be appointed by the governor. Eckstrom reiterated his help for that change Thursday in his resignation letter.

The subsequent comptroller normal might also lead a a lot weaker workplace. The investigating panel instructed its duties be transferred to a number of companies. State Treasurer Curtis Loftis, an elected Republican, has testified his workplace might take up the primary duties.

A licensed public accountant, Eckstrom, 74, spent 4 years as state treasurer earlier than assuming his present workplace. He has run unopposed prior to now two elections and final confronted a Republican major challenger in 2010.

By Maggi

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