|Public Release Date: October 23, 1998||No. 98-60|
Ridgewater Community & Technical College was created on July 1, 1996, when the Hutchinson-Willmar Regional Technical College merged with the Willmar Community College. The individual colleges merged with other state universities, community colleges, and technical colleges on July 1, 1995, to form the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities System (MnSCU). Dr. Mary Retterer was college president from July 1996 through August 1998. The MnSCU Board of Trustees appointed Ms. Colleen Thompson as interim president of Ridgewater Community & Technical College effective August 1998.
Our audit scope included a review of college financial management, tuition and fees, payroll, operating expenditures, federal grants, and bookstore operations for the period July 1, 1995, through June 30, 1997. We also audited the administration of the federal student financial aid program for fiscal year 1998.
Our audit found that Ridgewater Community & Technical College operated within its available resources and had an effective process to monitor revenue and expenditure budgets. However, certain financial activities were not recorded accurately or timely, bank account differences were not resolved, childcare center losses were incurred, and security access to its computerized accounting and payroll systems required improvement.
Several findings were identified concerning tuition, fees, bookstore, and other revenues. Findings relating to safeguarding and depositing controls over tuition and bookstore cash collections are presented. In addition, the college did not prepare complete financial statements to effectively monitor bookstore activities.
The college designed and implemented controls to provide reasonable assurance over the accuracy and proper recording of payroll, administrative, and financial aid expenditures. However, the college needs to reconcile its financial aid and student receivable system, resolve differences in Perkins loan balances, and coordinate foundation scholarships. We also noted that controls over safeguarding and recording equipment and verification of payroll hours required improvement.
In its response to the report, Ridgewater Community & Technical College agreed with the audit findings and suggested recommendations. The college is pursuing or has initiated corrective action to resolve all findings.