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City receives second clean audit report

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No major problems found

By Martin Salazar

For the second year in a row, the city of Las Vegas has received a clean audit on its financial statements and for the first time in about seven years, the audit was submitted on time.

The city received an unqualified opinion on both its financial statements and on its federal awards program. An unqualified opinion is the best opinion an entity can receive. It means that based on the test work done by auditors, the city’s financial statements appear to be accurate.

An unqualified opinion is also a significant improvement from the disclaimer opinion received by the city on its 2010 financial statements. A disclaimer opinion is about the worst opinion a public entity can receive.

The 2012 audit was conducted by the independent accounting firm of Moss-Adams LLP, and was approved by the City Council at its Wednesday meeting.

Mayor Alfonso Ortiz noted that the findings have decreased significantly from 2009. A document developed by the city shows that the city had more than 25 audit findings for the fiscal year 2009 audit. There were eight findings for the 2012 fiscal year audit, but none were considered material weaknesses. The only repeat finding was that the city bank reconciliations for three city accounts weren’t done on a timely basis. That’s of concern to auditors because it increases the risk that errors or fraud could go undetected for some time.

The city is discussing hiring an additional employee to help reconcile its accounts.

“There’s significant progress,” Ortiz said of the audit report, calling the progress on city audits impressive. The audit was discussed in detail during the Council’s work session on Feb. 6.

City Finance Director Pamela Marrujo said her staff worked hard to get the audit in on time.

Among the findings:

• The Housing and Urban Development Section 3 Annual Summary Report for the 2011 fiscal year was submitted a year late.

• The city’s quarterly progress reports under the CDBG grant were filed from seven to 128 days late.

• One fuel card transaction  had a mileage log that wasn’t completed accurately.