Washington Evening Journal
111 North Marion Avenue
Washington, IA 52353
The state auditor’s office published its annual audit of the Washington school district for the school year ending in 2020.
The report highlighted six budgetary issues in the district, but Business Manager Jeff Dieleman said the findings should be taken with a grain of salt.
“The district is in a really great financial position,” he said. “We’re right on our budget every year even with low support from the state, we aren’t eating into any of our reserves … There’s no red flags in the audit that I’m super concerned about.”
Two of the issues identified by the audit were flagged in 2019: spending above the certified budget and a lack of spending oversight, technically called “segregation of duties.”
Dieleman said the two were unavoidable, though the district was taking steps to minimize harms.
“We spent more than we had in our budget, but that was because we had a bunch more income than budgeted,” he said. “Every school district in Iowa gets that (segregation of duties) comment every year. We try and work on it, and then there’s something else. It’s just impossible to get the duties segregated enough to make an auditor happy.”
The report highlighted several other minor issues, including an error in school board minutes, a miscalculation of certificate deposit interest rates, a funding category adjustment and a few inactive student activity funds. Dieleman said the total effect of these errors was no more than a few hundred dollars, all of which could be easily recovered.
The auditor’s office accepted all district proposals to address concerns outlined in the report.