CAPE CORAL, FL - The City of Cape Coral council members ordered an internal audit of City fuel purchases on Nov. 15.

This was in response to a report that found annual fleet fuel consumption has nearly doubled to 735,000 gallons in the last five years, in contrast to reductions in fleet size and budget. The City consultant retained to look into city fleet operations further stated that Lee County fuel use had dropped, and its annual use is less than the City's annual fuel use.

The consultant's report stated that "there are virtually no management controls or separation of duties in place that would adequately prevent unauthorized use, abuse, or potential theft." In addition, the software provider of the City's fuel management system determined that vehicle fueling records in the system were manually overridden on a frequent basis without explanation.

He recommended the audit and stated that proper controls could reduce fuel expenses by as much as $1 million per year by returning to FY-2006 utilization levels at current market prices.

City Auditor Margaret Krym said if the audit uncovers fraud, then the necessary steps should be taken to investigate it, according to the News-Press.

The audit is scheduled to be finished in April.