Financial audits give Sound Transit clean bills of health

Sound Transit has received three clean opinions on its financial health following rigorous state, federal and financial audits of the agency.

“I can’t stress how unusual it is to audit programs of this scale and complexity and not have any findings,” Deloitte & Touche auditor Laurie Tish told members of the Sound Transit Audit and Reporting Subcommittee.

The three audits included one by the Washington State Auditor for the year 2001 and two of Sound Transit’s management of federal grants and other public funds during 2002, conducted by Deloitte & Touche.

All of the audits were clean, with no findings of problems with the agency’s financial management systems.

The Washington State Auditor’s probe marked the agency’s fifth consecutive state audit without findings.

The annual audits are among numerous accountability and oversight measures at Sound Transit.

Additional practices and structures for ensuring effective management of the public’s resources are summarized at:

The Deloitte & Touche audits satisfied extensive legal requirements for receiving federal funding, with particular focus on financial reporting and in-progress construction projects.

During the audits, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Office of the Inspector General conducted its own separate audit of Deloitte & Touche’s work that was above and beyond the normal process, issuing a clean report.

The state audit addressed Sound Transit’s accountability for public resources, including purchases of goods and services, accounts receivable, payroll, cash receipting and travel.

Also addressed was compliance with legal requirements including contracting and adherence to laws related to debt limitations, bond covenants, interlocal agreements and other issues.

The state audit also found no problems with Sound Transit’s adherence to subarea equity, the agency’s operating framework that requires revenues generated in each of five geographic subareas to be used for the benefit of that subarea.

Deloitte & Touche is working on a separate report on subarea equity compliance, scheduled to be completed next month.