Tacie Jo Bracken, an auditor with the firm Welch, Walker and Associates, presented the city’s financial audit to the City Council at its meeting Monday and said Waleska is in “great financial shape.”
“The city is in sound financial shape,” Bracken explained. “You ended in the black in all of your activities this year … All of your departments were within budget.”
Fiscal 2013 started July 1, 2012, and ended June 30, 2013, and Bracken said the firm reported the audit information to the state in January.
“We were able to report to the state that you had no departments that were materially over budget, which is a feather in your cap as far as stewardship of your finances,” Bracken said.
Bracken said the firm appreciated the city’s oversight of finances and commended Waleska for its financial management.
“In your governmental activities, which is your general fund and your SPLOST fund, you have a million dollars invested in capital assets. But, you still have net assets of around $700,000, which is really good for a city of this size — so it shows some fiscal responsibility on the part of the city,” Bracken said.
Unlike many cities, Bracken said the Waleska retirement plan is fully funded.
“Your retirement plan is in really good shape,” she said. “You’re 161 percent funded … and that’s a little unusual. You can imagine, the way the market has been, most cities aren’t standing in that kind of shape. So, you’re in really great shape with your retirement plan.”
Bracken explained “a lot of the problems from prior audits and entries we were making were simply a software setup issue.”
The firm did more than a hundred journal entries, or corrections, in the 2011 financial audit, Bracken said.
“Because of the software insanities, as I like to call it, the year before we did 145 journal entries to try to get the financial statements out,” she said. “We only did 18 this year.”
Bracken said it was a “huge commendation” to City Clerk and Manager Aimee Abernathy for working hard to get the Waleska financial records in order.
“I want to make sure I emphasize that this audit went really well; the city is in really good financial shape and your report shows that. And the finance department should definitely be commended for their hard work — they were very easy to work with,” Bracken said.