Lynnwood audit finds problems

LYNNWOOD — The city of Lynnwood is still struggling to produce accurate financial statements and keep tabs on its own accounts, according to a recent state audit.

An analysis of the city’s 2012 finances found a number of recurring problems and concerns, in addition to some progress made.

The preliminary audit reports were presented to the City Council on Monday night. The State Auditor’s Office expects to post the final reports Sept. 30.

City staff have been working to correct many of the problems, some of which they identified themselves before the audit, finance director Lorenzo Hines said Wednesday.

He called it “a positive movement toward addressing historical issues.”

Most of the problems noted in the audit have to do with how the city organizes its accounts, who has access to what, and what safeguards exist to prevent misuse of funds, the documents show.

The city’s golf course finances also continued to be an issue that concerns state auditors. Earlier this year, councilmembers voted to seek a contractor to run the course.

The city’s previous six audits identified similar problems with the financial statements not being accurate, timely or complete.

The city also did a poor job providing detail about all of its own assets, including value of a paved parking lot and city-owned artwork.

Unlike in previous audits, the state didn’t note any major issues with the city’s overall financial condition.

The preliminary audit reports are available on the city’s website at www.ci.lynnwood.wa.us. Look under the City Council agendas for Sept. 23.

Rikki King: 425-339-3449; rking@heraldnet.com.

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