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Pension administrator David Wescoe said today that he expects the retirement system’s audit for the 2004 fiscal year to be completed “hopefully by the end of October, if not sooner.”

Wescoe said that outside auditor Brown Armstrong has received drafts of the San Diego City Employees’ Retirement System’s overdue audits for the 2004 fiscal year. If the firm approves the audits, Wescoe and possibly other members of the SDCERS staff might have to sign off on the accuracy of the numbers before the firm makes its it final certification, he said.

The city is currently in the midst of wrapping up its long-overdue 2003 audit, at which point it will move toward finishing the 2004 and 2005 audits. The pension system’s financial report will be included in the 2004 audit. The massive audit backlog has led to a

consultant pretzel.

Less than two months ago, SDCERS trustees said they were considering firing the firm because of the delays, but the system’s staff vowed to press on just days later.

Mayor Jerry Sanders predicted that the city will receive its audits from KPMG by Oct. 27, despite the myriad criticisms that the City Council made yesterday toward the draft report that Sanders’ staff has prepared.

Sanders said the city is on track to begin borrowing from the public markets for much-needed infrastructure improvements by June. Completing the overdue audits is the key step to returning to Wall Street’s good graces.

EVAN McLAUGHLIN

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