The name of Paul DiNenna, finance chief of the Montgomery County Department of Liquor Control, was misspelled Sunday.
A private auditor's draft report on Montgomery County's internal auditing procedures criticizes the Department of Liquor Control, saying it maintains faulty price lists in liquor warehouses, fails to keep careful track of special orders for liquor, and accepts a large number of bad checks.
Overall, the still unpublished report, which leaked through the Montgomery County Council, found no "material weakness" in the county government's internal auditing system. But the auditors, Touche Ross & Co., targeted several departments and agencies, saying management changes could achieve "increased efficiency or improved controls."
The strongest criticism in the report was aimed at the department that administers all liquor, beer and wine wholesaling in the county. The auditors recommended that customers placing special orders be required to pay in advance to "alleviate the accumulation of special orders inventory and the need to control them."
Liquor Department finance chief Paul A. DeNenna said the audit, which covered the fiscal year that ended in June, 1982, contained no new problems that the department has not already addressed. "It is rather old news," he said. "We feel that we have the situation well in hand."
The auditors also criticized improper counting of returnable beer bottles, a recurring problem that the auditors said had not been addressed. The report said the department has poor accounting for broken beer bottles in its warehouse inventories.
In addition, the report said, "The volume of returned checks received from customers increased significantly in the fiscal year 1982. The costs and benefits of implementing a returned check prevention control system should be evaluated."
DeNenna said the liquor department has alleviated the bad check problem by now requiring customers to give a driver's license number when paying for merchandise by check at county liquor stores.
The auditors said they have raised all their criticisms and suggestions with liquor department managers, who recently reorganized the department administration.
The liquor department's management, and the philosophy behind a government monopoly on alcohol wholesaling, has been a source of continuing controversy. Manny Cebollero, who owns Belby's Discount Beer Store on Rockville Pike, is suing the county for sending him broken bottles or bottles without labels, and refusing to take them back after delivery.
The report said there could be improvements in several other departments and agencies as well.
In the Division of Accounting, part of the Finance Department, the draft report concludes that understaffing has led to needless delays in closing out last year's budget. And the report found that a number of invoices had been delayed, leaving vendors unpaid for long periods and leaving agencies with outdated price lists.
That conclusion backed a criticism made by the council's former lobbyist in Annapolis, who left that job last month, partly because she had not received a paycheck since last year.
The report suggested tighter controls over cash coming into the Department of Recreation and criticized the department's officials for often failing to deposit checks for class registration fees until the classes are full.
The report found that the county's pension funding method, while acceptable by accounting standards, could leave the county shortchanged in the long term. The report advocated a system of more "rapid funding" to "prevent future funding difficulties."