Norwalk Economic Opportunity Now announced Wednesday that it will retain the services of the accounting firm CohnReznick to complete the anti-poverty agency's 2011 financial audit.
Norma Brown, NEON Inc.'s chief financial officer, said that NEON will place the firm Hope & Hernandez PC, which had conducted previous audits for the agency, on retainer to provide assistance in producing documents they may have on file, thereby reducing the time needed to complete the audit.
Patricia Wilson Pheanious, NEON's interim CEO/president, explained that NEON's merger with Stamford's anti-poverty agency CTE, finalized last October, was outside of the audit now being conducted by CohnReznick, and that NEON is now simultaneously conducting a final audit of CTE's pre-merger financial records, which is being conducted by the BlumShapiro accounting firm.
Chiquita Stephenson, NEON's chief operating officer said, "The agency's board and staff are working diligently to proceed through documentation that supports a complex merger. The agency is proceeding with caution as we seek to produce accurate and transparent fiscal management records, while also preparing for our 2012 audit and the consolidation of books between the newly merged agencies, NEON and CTE."
The NEON board had considered these issues at its last board of directors meeting on Dec. 27, when members voted to give CohnReznick until Jan. 7 to negotiate a plan with NEON's accounting department staff to expedite the completion of the 2011 audit. The audit is expected to be completed by the end of January.