|Public Release Date: April 15, 1999||No. 99-22|
The State Agricultural Society was legally organized as a self-governing, public corporation in 1860. The Society operates under Minn. Stat. Chapter 37. The Minnesota State Agricultural Society Board of Managers operates the annual state fair exposition and maintains the state fairgrounds. The 10-member board is comprised of one representative from each of the Society's nine regional districts and a president. Mr. Jerry Hammer serves as the executive vice president of the Society.
The State Agricultural Society is financially self-sufficient. The society reported net income of $1,987,740 for the year ended October 31, 1998, and $3,038,160 for the year ended October 31, 1997. The Society generated $22,618,708 in revenues during fiscal year 1998, including both fair-time and non-fair event revenues. The Society's primary sources of revenue are fair-time ticket sales and commercial space licenses. Significant expense classifications include activities and support, plant maintenance, plant operations, administrative, and depreciation charges. The Society had total assets of $26,028,051 as of October 31, 1998.
The audit objectives were to:
We issued an unqualified opinion, dated February 19, 1999, on the State Agricultural Society's financial statements for the year ended October 31, 1998. The Society's annual report, which includes its audited financial statements, is available from the Society's offices.
We found that the Society's board of managers did not approve a rate decrease for one of the Society's attractions, as required by the Society's governing rules. In addition, the Society did not have current signed contracts on file for certain of its vendors.
The Society agreed with our recommendations and are taking actions to resolve the issues.