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Friday, April 18, 2014

OPA asked to audit Tinian FY’12 municipal finances

Tinian Mayor Ramon M. Dela Cruz renewed last week his January 2010 request to the Office of the Public Auditor to conduct an audit of the Tinian municipality’s finances, and offer suggestions on how to improve the island’s financial recordkeeping system. His renewed request, however, seeks to focus on Tinian’s fiscal year 2012 finances.

“I understand the repercussions of an audit, being that there will be discoveries and recommendations that will result. However, my administration is prepared to work its way through the critical review process in order to achieve the larger goal of being able to apply for federal grants,” Dela Cruz told public auditor Michael Pai in a Dec. 3 letter.

Pai has yet to respond to media inquiry whether OPA will conduct the audit.

The Tinian mayor said his office’s goal is for the audit results and accompanying improvement action items to “enable us to become a legally chartered municipality.”

Dela Cruz said Tinian is looking at applying for a grant that is due in April 2013 “so we would like to have this done within the next month or so.”

On Jan. 20, 2010, when Dela Cruz first came into office, he requested OPA to conduct an internal control and compliance audit “as soon as possible on the Tinian Municipal Treasury to ensure that proper accounting, procurement, and internal controls were followed in the procurement of goods and services during the previous administration.”

Almost three years later, Tinian has yet to see such an audit. The mayor revived his audit request to OPA, but this time focusing on fiscal year 2012.

“I would like to renew this request as we would like to improve our financial management system in hopes of successfully applying for federal grants. In addition, since the [OPA] has been receiving funds from our various local agencies for the purpose of performing audits, your office is likely now in a better position to conduct such an audit,” Dela Cruz told Pai.

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