Pattye Benson

Community Matters

Maillie LLP

In Advance of Election Day – Audit Letter Related to TESD $1.2 Million Accounting Error Arrives

At the T/E School Board meeting last night, there were a number of questions from residents about the District’s finances, budget process, etc. including a question that I asked about the status of the $1.2 million accounting error. If you recall four months ago, on June 11, the school board voted 6-3 for the District to take responsibility for the error and to correct the District audits and AFRs (annual financial reports) for 2016/17 and 2017/18.

It is now over 4 months since the school board voted to direct the District to correct the audit and AFRs but neither the board nor the administration has provided an update on this important accounting issue. Although the business manager bristled at my use of “accounting error” (what else should you call it?) after some back and fro between the school board president and the business manager, the upshot was that it should be completed by November 15 – 5 months since the vote took place.

Facing a lengthy agenda, I left the meeting about 9 PM. However at the end of the meeting, there was school board discussion about a letter from Maillie LLP, the District’s auditing firm. It was agreed that the letter would be made available to the public. So … today at least two residents reported they went to the Administration Building and were told that the letter would be released on Friday. It was impossible for me to understand WHY it should take four additional days for the letter to be released – was it because the contents of the letter needed to be slow-rolled in advance of Election Day on Nov. 5?

As luck would have it, we don’t have to wait until Friday – I have a copy of the October 16 letter written by Edward Furman, CPA from Maillie. From my vantage point, it looks like the District business manager has a lot of explaining to do about the $1.2 million accounting error and the timeline – some of his stories are not lining up! Furman’s letter contains extremely important financial information related to the $1.2 million accounting error but I leave the specifics of what it all means to our “financial experts”.

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