Camano Island Fire and Rescue passes two state audits with flying colors – March 20, 2017

 

The Washington State Auditor’s office released two separate audits of Camano Island Fire and Rescue, one focused on finances and a second audit on accountability. The audits covered fiscal years 2014 and 2015 and found no problems or issues with the department.

“These audits are an independent check that show we are good stewards of public resources,” said Chief Michael Schick. “The state auditors are professionals who make sure we’re transparent and accountable to our taxpayers.”

Having a history of clean audits and strong financial safeguards also helps the fire district earn an AA rating with Standard and Poor’s, Schick said. That rating helps lower borrowing costs when the fire department needs to finance large capital purchases such as fire engines or build facilities.

State Auditor Pat McCarthy explained the role of these audits in her introduction letter to the fire district, writing, “The State Auditor’s Office takes seriously our role of providing state and local governments with assurance and accountability as the independent auditor of public accounts. In this way, we strive to help government work better, cost less, deliver higher value and earn greater public trust.”

Here’s some basic information from the audit report about the fire district:

  • The fire district has 22 career firefighters and paramedic firefighters, six part-time firefighters, about 20 volunteer firefighters and eight administrative employees.
  • The fire district operates under a balanced budget. For the fiscal years of 2014, the district’s budget was $5,676,524. During the 2015 fiscal year, the budget was $5,772,802.
  • A five-member Board of Commissioners, elected by the voters, governs the fire district and appoints the fire chief.

To read the full reports, visit the Washington State Auditor’s website at http://portal.sao.wa.gov/reportsearch.