The Woodward News

Local News

December 22, 2012

City receives favorable audit report

(Continued)

Woodward, Okla. — REPORT ON INTERNAL CONTROLS

Moving on to discuss the report on internal controls, Meacham explained that auditors evaluated "are there controls in place so that we can know the numbers that you are reporting are correct?"

Once again, he said he was able to issue a positive opinion that there were "no material deficiencies" in the city's internal control process.

"You have good controls in place that are sufficient to make for accurate financial reporting," Meacham said.

REPORT ON FEDERAL FUNDS

Meacham explained that the report on federal funds reviews how the city handled the federal grant and loan money that it received.

He said that the auditing process for federal funds is somewhat complex because each grant has to be evaluated "based on the criteria established by the granting agencies," with each department having different requirements.

"We look at your grant awards and expenditures and then look at the administration of those funds to see if they were handled according to the proper criteria," he said.

In the review of the city's FY2012 federal grant administration, Meacham said, "again we have a clean opinion."

RESPONSE FROM CITY LEADERS

Mayor Roscoe Hill said he was impressed with the positive audit, especially considering the sheer volume of financial data and money involved.

"A few years ago our assets were around $40 million and now they're at $88 million," Hill said.  "And it just surprises me that with all that the audit finds nothing.  It pleases me, but it also surprises me because that's an awful lot of assets."

Meacham agreed that "it is a lot of assets and a lot of transactions going on in the city day in and day out."

He said it just goes to speak to the city's financial staff and the job they do that when those transactions are reviewed, no problems are found.

"It's your people that make that happen," Meacham said of the clean audit opinions.

City Manager Alan Riffel also said that the good audit can be attributed back to "good staff."

Especially since the Meacham auditing firm "looked at everything in a closer fashion because it was their first year," he said.  RS Meacham was hired by city commissioners earlier this year to replace CPA Derrel S. White, who had served as the city's auditor for the past several years.

"They (Meacham) had a higher number of staff here for a longer amount of time, pulling more documents in order to familiarize themselves with our operations.  So the fact that that level of scrutiny came out with the same outcome, speaks to what our staff works hard to do every day.  And that's to be mindful in our stewardship of public dollars," Riffel said.

The city manager also expressed satisfaction that this latest audit continues the city's trend of earning positive audit reports.

"We've received an unqualified opinion for many years now, so having a new firm issue a similar finding on an even higher level of activity than we've had in the past is certainly reassuring that what we're working hard to accomplish is being achieved," Riffel said.

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