Harrison city audit past due

Harrison residents expressed concern that the city audit is past due. According to City Treasurer Kara Henderson (not pictured) the delay is the result of staff changes at city hall. Ms. Henderson took over the job of treasurer in April. Ms. Henderson said the city expects independent auditors to complete their work by the end of August.

The city of Harrison has yet to complete an annual audit of the city budget for fiscal year 2018.

According to Idaho Code, municipalities are required to submit a completed audit to the Legislative Service Offices within nine months of the fiscal year.

The city of Harrison ends it fiscal year September 30. The audit was due June 30.

Sources who spoke anonymously allege that the city failed to complete the previous year’s audit on time and expressed concern that the city was not operating transparently.

“As of yet, the 2018 audit has not been completed, but only due to staff changes,” City Treasurer Kara Henderson said.

Asked about the previous year’s audit, Ms. Henderson said, “I can’t tell you about last year since I wasn’t here.”

Mayor Kayleen Walker was unavailable for comment in time for this publication. She is aiding a family member recovering from a medical procedure.

An employee of the Legislative Services Office audit department said the city submitted its audit for the fiscal year 2017 and completed its registry for fiscal year 2018 by the Dec. 1, deadline.

There is no penalty for missing the June 30, audit submission deadline.

If a municipality fails to meet the December 1, deadline for registry and remains out of compliance until Sept. 1 of the following year, when the LSO makes its final noncompliance report, it may be penalized.

Penalties include the withholding of tax revenue by the State Tax Commission and denied requests for budget increases by the county.

The city of Harrison is not under threat of penalty. And would only be subject to penalty if it failed to meet the Dec. 1, 2019 registry deadline and remained out of compliance until Sept. 2020.

The audit itself is not conducted by the city. It is conducted by independent auditors to provide transparency and avoid conflicts of interest.

However, changes in staff delayed information being exchanged between the city and auditors according to Ms. Henderson.

“I’ve been working diligently to get everything up and running,” Ms. Henderson said.

According to Ms. Henderson the city expects the audit to be complete by the end of August.

“It should be by the end of August, but it’s really on the auditor’s timeline,” Ms. Henderson said.

Ms. Henderson, an accountant, took on the role of interim city treasurer at the end of April. She has since been appointed to the position permanently.

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