Sunshine Coast Council has received a 13th consecutive commendable report from the Queensland Audit Office (QAO).
The QAO undertakes an annual audit of Queensland’s 77 local government entities (councils) to assess that councils are providing reliable financial statements that comply with relevant laws and accounting standards.
Finance Portfolio Councillor Ted Hungerford said an independent audit carried out by the QAO found that council’s key financial reporting and audit deliverables had been met.
“This is the 13th consecutive unmodified audit opinion Sunshine Coast Council has received from the QAO following its review of our 2020/21 draft financial statements, internal control framework and financial sustainability ratios,” Cr Hungerford said.
The QAO audit was conducted at several points throughout the year, starting with planning in November 2020, interim testing of controls during March and June 2021, culminating with the final financial statements and asset valuation audit in September 2021.
While council’s overall Operating Result for 2020/21 was a deficit of $28 million, during the 2020/21 financial year council refinanced its existing loan portfolio to take advantage of lower interest rates and free up cashflow through lower repayments.
This resulted in one-off early repayment costs of $34 million. Restatement of the Operating Result to exclude all one-off accounting adjustments delivers a positive Operating Result of $10 million. That’s despite council’s operating result being adversely impacted by approximately $9 million due to COVID-19.