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3 golden objects Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Legislative Auditor - Financial Audit Division

Report Summary

Management Letter

State Agricultural Society

For the Year Ended October 31, 2000

Key Findings and Recommendations:

  • The State Agricultural Society has not adequately documented its computerized accounting systems. It does not have formal, written documentation to show how its computer programs relate to each other and how data flows through and between the various programs. The Society also does not adequately document changes made to its computer programs. We first reported these issues in our 1999 audit. During fiscal year 2000, the Society partially implemented the finding and recommendations by outsourcing its grandstand ticket sales function for the state fair. In January 2001, the Society also implemented a new system to process its payroll. The Society should continue to create documentation for its computer systems, including detailed descriptions of processes and data flows. (Finding 1, page 5)
  • The Society's internal controls over fair time payroll need to be improved. The Society did not have proper documentation for certain payroll payments and did not always follow its regular payroll processing requirements during fair time. The Society should ensure that all employment and payroll documents relating to fair time payroll are properly signed and approved. It should enforce the same approval process over fair time payroll check runs as it uses for regular payroll processing. (Finding 2, page 6)
  • The Society did not ensure that it received the entire amount due from the sale of Pronto Pass tickets. The Pronto Pass combined a gate ticket to the fair with a pass to ride any Metro Transit bus to and from the fair. The Society should develop internal controls to adequately account for all Pronto Pass tickets, either sold or unsold. (Finding 3, page 6)

The State Agricultural Society operates Minnesota's annual state fair and maintains the state fairgrounds. The Society earned about $26.5 million in operating revenues during fiscal year 2000 and had total assets of over $29 million on October 31, 2000.

The primary objective of our audit was to issue an opinion on the financial statements of the State Agricultural Society for the year ended October 31, 2000. The Society's Annual Report for fiscal year 2000 includes our opinion thereon dated February 22, 2001. This management letter addresses internal control weaknesses we found during our audit.

Office of the Legislative Auditor, Room 140, 658 Cedar St., St. Paul, MN 55155 : or 651‑296‑4708