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No findings reported in 2017 audit

ELIZABETHTON (Dec 19, 2017) - Stability and proactivity continues to be a trend for the City of Elizabethton’s finances.
City officials received an early Christmas gift this week with the release of the 2017 adults for the city government and Elizabethton Electric. The audit, performed by Blackburn, Childers & Steagall, showcased no findings for the city or electric system.
It has been a continued trend for the City of Elizabethton, which hasn’t received an audit finding since 2014. The announcement also marks the third year in a row the electric system remained finding free for finances.
“In our opinion, based on our audit and the report of the auditors, the financial statements referred to above present fairly, in all material respects, the respective position of the governmental activities …” the report read.
City Finance Director Deborah Kessler said the news is a result of each department coming together to have the right policies in place and being fiscally responsible.
“The city is in sound financial shape,” Kessler said.
Financial highlights noted in the report include:

  • The City’s total net position increased by $2,754,195.
  • The City’s fund balance at the end of the fiscal year for the general fund was $10,159,148, an increase from the 2016 total – $7,364,956
  • The City’s governmental funds reported combined ending fund balances of $10,933,174, an increase from the 2016 total – $7,951,983

According to information provided in the audit, the unemployment rate for the metropolitan statistical area is currently at 3 percent, a decrease of 1.4 percent from 2016. Another positive note for the city is that local sales tax collections are expected to increase around 3 percent in 2018 “as a continuation of the current trend towards moderate improvement of the economy,” according to the report.
Kessler added that the goal moving forward is to monitor expenditures and revenue and that positive trend of economic growth looks to continue according to information gathered from financial statements. One reason finances have been in good shape, according to Kessler, is the ability to be conservative with spending.
Elizabethton Electric saw a near $2 million change in total expenses in 2017 ($52,604,065 compared to 2016’s $50,934,601). Total revenues rose to $54,745,244 in 2017, an increase from last year’s $52,988,094.
Elizabethton City Schools also noted no findings for their 2017 audit.

Read the article from the Elizabethton Star here.