Audits Say Jungle Island Is Not Keeping Pledge to Government Loans


Jungle Island “is an area that has always been weak for us,” said Sarnoff, whose commission district includes the aviary attraction. “If there are more issues out there, that’s just further reason for concern.”


City auditors found the park’s financial records appeared to be “reasonably stated” overall, according to the draft of the report obtained by The Miami Herald.


But, in a separate issue, the park overstated its payroll expenses, according to the audit.


In 2010, Jungle Island said it spent $5.5 million on its employees, city auditors found. Strategic Outsourcing Inc., the company that handles payroll for Jungle Island, said the expenses were closer to $4.7 million.


Jungle Island explained the discrepancy by saying it had paid separate vendors for parking personnel and performers.


That did little to satisfy the auditors, who chided park officials for improperly reporting expenses.


“As of this date, we were not provided with an explanation by Jungle Island for including vendor payroll costs in their payroll expenses,” they wrote. “Including vendor payroll expenses with those of Jungle Island overstates Jungle Island’s payroll expenses and may mislead financial statement users.”


El Nuevo Herald staff writer Melissa Sanchez contributed to this report.



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It wasn’t that long ago that one of Kevin Antle’s tigers broke free of his cage there and chased an escaped monkey across the zoo during visiting hours.

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