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District in 'Very Good Financial Position,' Auditor Says

For the fifth straight year, the School District of the Chathams has received a certificate for excellence in financial reporting.

The School District of the Chathams has received the Association of School Business Officials International’s (ASBO) Certificate of Excellence for Financial Reporting for the fifth consecutive year.

Scott Clelland, of Wiss & Co. LLP, said Chatham is only one of about 20 districts statewide to receive the certificate during his presentation to the board of education Monday regarding his company’s audit for the district’s 2011-12 budget.

Clelland said the official opinion of the district’s 2012 budget is “unqualified,” the highest level of opinion that can be placed on an audit.

“This means the information provided to us was accurate and was sufficient to provide the work we need to do to give an opinion,” he said.

Clelland said the district is in very good financial position and consistent with, if not better than, He said there were no overexpended line items and that the fund balance had increased slightly from the previous year.

The auditor also mentioned that the district “prudently utilized and took advantage of” 40 percent of the funds it received from the New Jersey Schools Development Authority for construction and modernization projects.

Clelland did say that there were four minor findings from his company’s financial report reflecting ways in which the district can improve its reporting. The four minor findings were:

  • All of the summer payroll checks were printed on the same date and listed as outstanding checks until they were distributed.
  • A few amounts listed on a worksheet did not match the approved 2011-2012 Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEIA) budget.
  • It was noted in one instance within the Local Public School Contract Law that a vendor was paid in excess of the awarded bid.
  • It was noted in one instance of a professional service contract that a vendor was paid without a written agreement in place.

However, Clelland said the findings were too minor to be considered “material weaknesses or significant deficiency.”

The auditor said the district’s business office should be commended for the excellent job it does in “keeping internal controls up-to-date, current, accurate and providing us with accurate information to perform the audit.”

Business Administrator Peter Daquila explained that the auditor’s report and financial summary are public documents and that he will have them up on the district’s website by the end of the week.

kjchat December 11, 2012 at 11:53 PM
great, does this mean we can hold the line on tax increases next year??

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