School Board President Kevin Honnell
The Los Alamos Public Schools Board of Education received a bit of good news during its regular meeting Tuesday – the recent audit gave the district an unqualified opinion, which is the best rating that could be received.
Vice President Dawn Venhaus
“The audit went very well this year,” said J.J. Griego of Griego Professional Services, which performed the audit.
He added there were no new findings. “That’s an incredible feat.”
Board Secretary Melanie McKinley
Still, Board President Kevin Honnell pointed out that comparing findings from this year to last year, the district seems to be making the same ones.
Chief Financial Officer John Wolfe told the Los Alamos Daily Post there were four re-occurring findings. These included one stale-date check, or a check that had not been cashed. The amount was about $78.
Board Member David Foster
Griego said the findings were significantly less than in the past and the district staff worked diligently to do estimates.
Wolfe agreed; he credited the very positive audit report to his staff’s efforts. “They try to be as accurate as possible,” he said, adding that a positive audit is important. “It benefits us in so many different ways.”
Board Member Judy Bjarke-McKenzie
For instance, the audit reveals the district is responsible and helps out with bond purchases by keeping interest rates low because the report drives an excellent bond rating.
School Board candidate Jim Hall cautioned the board that perfect audits come with a cost and urged the administration to return to the board with a suggested process that would lead to zero findings.
Superintendent Gene Schmidt suggested that the board consider having one of its members serve on the district’s finance committee.