Front of the district office building

District's solid financial health detailed in new audits

December 15, 2017 | San Diego Community College District

The San Diego Community College District’s streak of spotless financial reviews remains intact, with independent auditors finding for the sixth straight year that the district is in strong financial health, employs solid internal controls to ensure that revenue and spending remain in order, and is in compliance with laws, regulations, contracts, and grants applicable to all federal and state regulations programs. 

District Chancellor Constance Carroll believes that board and districtwide leadership are responsible for this outcome. “From the foresight of the Board of Trustees in establishing a special reserve fund for the increased cost of the state’s retirement programs, to the care and focus of the executive vice chancellor and campus vice presidents of administration, to the thorough work of the Citizens’ Oversight Committee for the bond measures, the district’s large and sprawling budget is effectively managed at all levels. This hard, collaborative, and forward-looking work shows in the unmodified audit.”

Five separate “unmodified” audits without any findings of faults or recommendations were presented to the SDCCD’s Board of Trustees at its December 14 meeting. The reports were prepared by external auditors and examined the district’s overall financial statements and operations, business practices and internal controls, the Propositions S and N bond building funds, the SDCCD’s Social Security Alternative Plan, and the SDCCD’s Auxiliary Organization.

The SDCCD nonprofit Auxiliary Organization promotes and supports the SDCCD. The Social Security Alternative Plan enables the SDCCD to invest in employee retirement accounts instead of paying into the Social Security system. Propositions S and N are voter-approved measures that allowed for $1.55 billion in bond sales that have funded dozens of projects that have transformed San Diego City, Mesa, and Miramar colleges and seven Continuing Education campuses.

The district’s combined balance sheet of all funds totaled $503 million as of June 30, 2017, the fiscal year end for the district. 

SDCCD Executive Vice Chancellor, Bonnie Ann Dowd says the audit findings reflect the district’s strong leadership and oversight.

“As evidenced by the independent auditors issuing “unmodified” opinions with no findings, recommendations, questionable costs, weaknesses of internal controls, or lack of compliance with federal and state laws and regulations demonstrates the excellent stewardship by the SDCCD Board of Trustees and chancellor of local and state taxpayers’ investment in the San Diego Community College District, said Dowd.”

San Diego-based accounting firm of Christy White Associates prepared all five audits. In accounting parlance, the audits were “unmodified,” meaning they found the district to be in accordance with all applicable financial reporting requirements.  Even more noteworthy is that none of the five audits resulted in any recommendations or negative findings.

Besides earning the clean bill of fiscal health from Christy White Associates, the SDCCD has been awarded Moody’s highest bond performance rating of Aaa and is consistently awarded Standard and Poor’s top bond performance rating of AA+ for a state-funding-reliant organization for Propositions S and N.

The SDCCD audit report can be accessed online at: SDCCD Annual Audit 2016 - 2017.

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