Ken wrote:To be honest I think that this is making a mountain out of a molehill. The accounts are presented in a manner normal for much larger entities than the Canoe Union. The disclosures are actually quite detailed. Likewise the mistakes that were made were relatively small. From the auditors perspective at least if they were to investigate every small suspected misstatement the additional cost of doing so would massively outweigh the benefit of having a slightly different number on the Financial Statements.
Clerical errors could be something like typing the wrong thing into a computer. It happens all the time.
Given that the other issue regarding the CEO's remuneration had the cooperation of both the CEO and a former president it's hard to see how any additional disclosures could have noticed this. It's very difficult to discover such things, particularly when they relate to salaries, tighter internal controls or a different audit approach may have made a difference, but it's impossible to know.
Sorry Ken but we have to disagree on this. I showed the accounts to two independent chartered accountants. Their opinion was that the accounts weren't up to scratch. Sure they are presented in a manner normal for much larger entities than the Canoe Union, they look like other accounts, following the outline of proper accounts, but they lacked significant detail in areas, and were wholly incorrect in places. Look at the appendix they have supplied in recent years, its filled with junk numbers, meaningless tables of numbers that dont correspond with anything in the main accounts, adding no value only the appearance of completeness and detail. I'd be happy if the accounts were 5 pages shorter in future, but the have to be done correctly.
I'm not out to spot every typo in the accounts and bust peoples balls about it, there are plenty of simple errors in the accounts that are not worth bringing attention to. Yes the "mistakes" I raised were relatively small, about €9,000 out on the PRSI front. This of its self is minor, €9,000 when you are talking about accounts that cover nearly €1 Million surely seems to be nit picking, especially seeing as they corrected it, right?
Wrong. The question is how did they make the €9,000 error in the first place? If the accounts are truly audited this type of mistake is impossible to make. Impossible. A simple clerical error would be simple to explain but it would seem the only way to make this kind of an error is by balancing the books rather than auditing them. Thats why the explanation of how they made this error is so important, and the explanation just doesn't add up. The explanation is a word jumble. I'd love if someone could explain it to me.
Ken wrote: From the auditors perspective at least if they were to investigate every small suspected misstatement the additional cost of doing so would massively outweigh the benefit of having a slightly different number on the Financial Statements.
As for the costs involved with doing a detailed proper annual audit. For a company the size of the ICU, with the ICU's turn over, the ICU was already spending top dollar on the audit. For the year in question the fee was €9,115, which is massive, simply massive. There's no excuse.
If the accounts were done correctly the VHI Plan E insurance would be in a separate bracket to the ICU's general insurance. And a retirement package worth €30,000 for one person would be as plain as day. This entire debacle wouldn't have happened. But its clear that the ICU board trusted the CEO Mick Scanlon to oversee the audit, and they suffered as a result. Even the auditor deferred to Mick when asked about the discrepancies at the first part of the AGM.
I'm sure there's more to come out of this fiasco other than a persons employment contract, this is only chapter one and yes proper book keeping and transparency would have stopped that also.
PS. The accounts of the ICU used to be extremely well done prior to around 2000. I mean top class stuff, the auditor from back really did a good job.