City of Powell River's annual audit reports no concerns

Auditor makes report to finance committee

City of Powell River has been presented with a clean audit for 2019.

At the July 23 finance committee meeting, members heard from Mario Piroddi, from BDO Canada, which conducted an audit of the city’s finances.

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In the BDO report to council, it stated that the objective of the audit was to obtain reasonable, not absolute, assurance about whether the financial statements are free from material misstatement.

The audit focused on management override of internal controls, revenue recognition, tangible capital assets and accumulated amortization, employee future benefits, staff salaries and impact of COVID-19.

The audit report stated there were no misstatements detected as a result of BDO’s audit procedures that were either corrected or remain uncorrected.

The report further stated that through BDO’s planning process, and current and prior years’ audits, the firm has developed an understanding of the city’s oversight processes. Auditors stated that they were not currently aware of any fraud affecting the city.

In all of the significant audit matters, BDO stated that all audit testing was executed as planned and no issues were noted.

Regarding COVID-19, the auditors discussed the matter with management and reviewed management’s assessment of the impact of COVID-19 on the city.

Regarding internal control matters, BDO stated it is required to report to the city, in writing, significant deficiencies in internal control that have been identified during the audit.

“We did not note any significant matters requiring your attention in the current year,” stated BDO in its report.

In the independent auditor’s report, it stated that the consolidated financial statements present fairly, in all material respects, the finance position of the city as of December 31, 2019, and its consolidated results of operations, its consolidated change in net financial assets and its consolidated cash flows for the year in accordance with Canadian public sector accounting standards.

City acting manager of accounting services Ryan Youngman said the city is pleased to receive the opinion of a clean audit from independent auditors. Youngman said the auditing process is extensive for the auditor and for the city’s finance department.

“They review our processes and our documentation to make sure everything is in line with the Canadian public sector accounting standards,” said Youngman. “It went pretty smoothly this year.”

This year’s audit procedure was slightly different due to COVID-19; the auditors performed some of their tasks at city hall and did part of their review remotely. Typically, they would do the review at city hall solely.

The city has had consistently good audits and the practices of the City of Powell River are good, according to Youngman.

“We are definitely very pleased that it went smoothly,” said Youngman.

He added that the financial statements are not finalized. The BDO presentation was to the city’s finance committee, which has sent the report to the city council meeting on August 20, where it will be voted upon.

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