Financial audit presented to South Jacksonville trustees

By Ryne Turke on January 7, 2016 at 9:38pm

Suzanne Steckel making the audit presentation at Village Hall

There were positives and negatives that came out of South Jacksonville’s latest financial audit on Thursday night.

During the monthly village meeting, Suzanne Steckel presented the audit, ranging from May 2014 to April 2015, on behalf of Zumbahelen, Eyth, Surratt, Foote & Flynn.

South Jacksonville ended the fiscal year with $3.5 million in the fund balance. Nearly $2 million of that cash was restricted for specific purposes like the TIF Fund and public safety.

WLDS/WEAI News spoke with Steckel after the meeting to break down South Jacksonville’s governmental funds.

“So if you look at the current year revenue, versus the current year expenses, the village was negative by $240-thousand. But $566-thousand of that went towards new roads. If you add that back in they had a profit of about $300-thousand.”

Steckel complimented the village for “breaking even”, because many communities aren’t able to stay in the positive.

Steckel felt the village should be placing more importance on several material weaknesses.

“The village has plenty of cash reserve, but they still need to work on credit card statements and the security deposit reconciliation.”

Steckel also suggested improving the speed at which the village’s E-Pay and water bill accounts are processed and making a list of disbursements that trustees approve.

Steckel added that these are areas the village has needed to address for years.

Documents obtained by Mike Woodyard of the Morgan County Watchdogs Group, and reported by WLDS/WEAI in December, showed about $186-thousand unaccounted from the village water-sewer saving account, during the time focused on the ISP investigation.

Steckel says there were no problems in the latest water-sewer audit, except that the security deposits in this fund need to be reconciled.

Nearly one year ago, South Jacksonville officials agreed to increase the sewer rates in the village. Steckel said that action increased the village’s overall revenue by $45-thousand over a four month period.

South Jacksonville officials plan to post the financial audit on the village website as soon as possible.