Office of Auditor

The auditor, one of the state’s seven constitutional offices, serves as the general accountant for the State of Arkansas. The auditor oversees the balance sheets of state agencies and disburses funds on behalf of the State, as well as disbursing select federal funds, keeping “all public accounts, books, vouchers, documents, and all papers relating to the contracts of the state and its debts, revenue, and fiscal affairs which are not required by law to be placed in some other office or kept by some other person,” according to the Arkansas Code.

The office of auditor has been in existence since Arkansas was made a territory of the United States in 1819, and very little has changed regarding the auditor’s duties since that time. Act 29 of 1877 made it a duty of the auditor to publish receipts and expenditures of public money, in addition to the biennial report delivered to the governor at the beginning of each term of the Arkansas General Assembly. Act 17 of 1883 required the auditor to report the total amount of warrants (checks) still outstanding as well as the balance unexpended regarding any appropriation. Act 334 of 1953 required that the auditor keep a register of all checks drawn upon state agency funds in his or her office. The auditor is responsible for keeping an account between the state and the state treasurer as well as between the state and the United States. Other duties include directing prosecutions regarding official delinquencies “in relation to the assessment, collection, and payment of the revenue against all persons who by any means become possessed of public money or property and fail to pay over and deliver it and to direct prosecutions against all debtors of the state”; procuring “an abstract and description of all taxable lands within the state”; and annually furnishing “the proper officer in each county in the month of January a descriptive list of all taxable lands in the county not previously furnished.”

The office of the auditor encompasses five divisions: Administration; the Data Processing Division, which physically prints warrants issued by the state; the Warrant Division, which processes said checks; the Accounting Division; and the Unclaimed Property Division. A project of the last division is the annual Great Arkansas Treasure Hunt, initiated by Julia Hughes Jones during her term in office to advertise assets declared abandoned.

AUDITOR NAME PARTY BEGAN ENDED
Elias N. Conway 1836 1841
A. Boileau May 1841 July 1841
Elias N. Conway 1841 1849
C. C. Danley 1849 1854
William Read Miller 1854 1855
A. S. Huey 1855 1857
William Read Miller 1857 1860
H. C. Lowe 1860 1861
William Read Miller 1861 1864
J. R. Berry Rep 1864 1866
William Read Miller Rep (Lib) 1866 1868
J. R. Berry Rep (Brin) 1868 1873
Stephen Wheeler Rep (Min) 1873 1874
William Read Miller Dem 1874 1877
John Crawford Dem 1877 1883
A. W. Files Dem 1883 1887
William Read Miller Dem 1887 1887
W. S. Dunlop Dem 1887 1893
C. B. Mills Dem 1893 1897
Clay Sloan Dem 1897 1901
T. C. Monroe Dem 1901 1905
Avery E. Moore Dem 1905 1909
John R. Jobe Dem 1909 1913
John M. Oathout Dem 1913 1913
L. L. Coffman Dem 1913 1915
M. F. Dickinson 1915 1917
Hogan Oliver Dem 1917 1921
James Guy Tucker Dem 1921 1925
J. Carrol Cone Dem 1925 1929
J. Oscar Humphrey Dem 1929 1935
Charles E. Parker Dem 1935 1937
J. Oscar Humphrey Dem 1937 1956
F. Nolan Humphrey 1956 1956
Jimmie “Red” Jones Dem 1957 1979
Jimmie Lou Fisher Dem 1979 1981
Julia Hughes Jones Dem 1981 1995
Gus Wingfield Dem 1995 2003
Jim Wood Dem 2003 2011
Charlie Daniels Dem 2011 2015
Andrea Lea Rep 2015

Note: Auditors were appointed by the state legislature until 1864. No party is listed for those appointed, including M. F. Dickenson and F. Nolan Humphrey, to complete terms.


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Julia Hughes Jones switched to the Republican Party in 1993.

For additional information:
Auditor of State. http://www.arkansas.gov/auditor/ (accessed April 6, 2018).

Historical Report of the Secretary of State. Little Rock: Arkansas Secretary of State’s Office, 2008.

Staff of the Encyclopedia of Arkansas History & Culture

Last Updated: 04/06/2018