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Port Receives Another Clean Audit

Burlington – For the sixteenth consecutive year, the state Auditor’s Office has given the Port of Skagit a clean bill of health for its operations during fiscal year 2009.

The Auditor’s Office issued no recommendations and no findings in its report. The port’s annual audits, which examine financial information and compliance with state, federal and local laws, have been free of findings since 1995, the Auditor’s Office reported.

“As our record shows, we are diligent in providing transparency in the operations of the port,” said Kristin M. Garcia, CPA, director of finance. “The whole staff is conscientious about making sure we’re in compliance with the law.”

The Auditor’s Office also included highlights from the port‘s financial statements.

The report found that the port’s total assets exceeded its liabilities at Dec. 31, 2009, by $32.1 million. Of this amount, $29.7 million is invested in capital assets, net of related debt, $1.9 million is restricted and $436,175 is unrestricted.

Port operating revenues for the year ended Dec. 31, 2009, totaled $4.3 million, compared to 2008 operating revenues of $4.5 million, a decrease of 5 percent, the report stated. Skagit Regional Airport revenues increased 17 percent, mostly attributed to the construction of two T-hangar facilities located on Crosswinds Drive that provided 20 additional hangars to lease. Bayview Business Park revenues decreased 6 percent and the La Conner Marina decreased 9 percent, both attributed to factors in the economy.

Total operating expenses decreased $491,993, which was 7 percent lower than 2008. The decrease between 2008 and 2009 was due to austerity measures taken early 2009, which resulted in a reduction in staff and cutting other expenses such as supplies, travel, and training.

According to the audit report, the port had $41.6 million (net of accumulative depreciation) in capital assets as of Dec. 31, 2009. The port’s capital assets include land, buildings, improvements, machinery, equipment and construction in progress. Capital assets (net of accumulative depreciation) at Dec. 31, 2008, totaled $41.1 million so 2009 net capital assets increased $521,111. The increase is primarily attributed to the installation of fiber optics on Peterson Road throughout the port’s business park and along Airport Higgins Way.

“In the areas we examined, the port’s internal controls were adequate to safeguard public assets. The port also complied with state laws and regulations and its own policies and procedures in the areas we examined,” the audit report concluded.

If you are a reporter seeking information about the Port of Skagit, please call Andrew Entrikin, community outreach administrator, at 360-757-0011 or email andrew@portofskagit.com