Charles City Community School District receives clean report from independent auditor
To The Press
An independent financial audit of the Charles City Community Schools determined that the district maintains a high level of compliance with state and federal regulations and provides clean accountability in the use of government funds.
The audit, conducted by Nolte, Cornman & Johnson P.C., found that the district qualifies as a low-risk auditee. There are no noted material weaknesses in the internal control over financial reports or major programs. The district remains in compliance with financial procedures of Uniform Guidance. The clean audit report also means that no findings must be reported to state or federal entities due to compliance issues.
“In our opinion, the financial statements referred to above present fairly, in all material respects, the respective financial position of the governmental activities, business type activities, each major fund, and the aggregate remaining fund information of the Charles City Community School District as of June 30, 2021, and the respective changes in financial position and, where applicable, cash flows thereof for the year then ended in accordance with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles,” said Nancy Janssen, president of Nolte, Cornman & Johnson P.C.
“The results of this audit verify that Charles City Community Schools continues to have proper checks and balances for all tax-payer funds and uses them in a legal, ethical, and wise manner for the benefit of all students,” said Pat Rottinghaus, board president. “The return of ‘low-risk auditee’ is the highest level an organization can receive.”
Over the past fiscal year, which ended June 30, 2021, the district’s general fund revenue increased by $2.27 million, from $18.579 million in fiscal year 2020, to $20.849 million in the last fiscal year. The general fund is also healthy, with a $900,000 ending balance increase in the last fiscal year.
Last year, district revenues were at $25.325 million and expenses at $25.614 million. The increase in expenditures were attributed to one-time investments covered by the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) Fund, which provided COVID-19 pandemic relief to schools nationwide. Operating grants, contributions and restricted interest increased $1,837,518 contributing to the increase in revenues.
Charles City Community Schools’ total long-term debt also declined by $1.9 million, representing an 18.83 percent decrease from the previous year.
Nolte, Cornman & Johnson P.C. made three comments regarding required reporting:
• Certified Budget – “Expenditures for the year ended June 30, 2021, exceeded the certified budget amounts in the support services and other expenditures functions and in total. Recommendation – The certified budget should have been amended in accordance with Chapter 24.9 of the Code of Iowa before expenditures were allowed to exceed the budget.”
District response – “Internal controls have been put in place to provide checks and balances of expenses and the budget so amendments can be made when necessary, these will consistently be reviewed and adapted to become better with new staff and leadership.” Conclusion – Response accepted.
• Board Minutes – “We noted the June 30, 2021 balance of deposits on hand at one approved depository exceeded the maximum amount specified. Recommendation – The District should review the procedures in place and make necessary adjustments to comply with Chapter 12C.2 of the Code of Iowa.”
District response – “Internal controls have been put in place to monitor maximum depository fund amounts to comply with Chapter 12C.2 of the Code of Iowa and depository amounts did increase to be compliant.” Conclusion – Response accepted.
• Certified Enrollment – “We noted the basic enrollment data certified to the Iowa Department of Education was overstated by 11.3 students. Recommendation – The Iowa Department of Education and the Iowa Department of Management should be contacted to resolve this matter.
District response – “The District’s auditor will contact the Iowa Department of Education and Iowa Department of Management to resolve this matter.” Conclusion – Response accepted.
The financial audit is an annual process required by Board of Education policy and the state of Iowa. This year’s audit report was delayed several months due to the illness of an audit partner.
The entire 74-page independent auditor’s report is available online under reports on https://www.charlescityschools.org/ or on the Auditor of State’s website at https://auditor.iowa.gov/audit-reports.