MIAMI – An independent auditor told the Miami City Council the City of Miami had come a long way and there were no issues in their findings.
Andy Cromer, with Arledge & Associates presented the Fiscal Year 2015/2016 Audited Annual Financial Statements and Independent Auditor's Report through June 30, 2016. This is the first year the Edmond auditing firm has completed the City of Miami's financial audit.
“Nothing struck me that had to be pointed out,” Cromer said. “The utility authority looks very good. It's profitable. It's got sufficient reserves. The General Fund, it's probably on the minimum side that's acceptable as far as reserves.”
Cromer said he is aware the City is working toward building reserves, something the audit firm believes is important to accomplish. He said it's typical and advised for a city to have six months of revenue and the City of Miami holds about three months of revenue in reserve.
“Really beyond that as far as numbers nothing struck me that I thought I needed to point out,” Cromer said.“Nothing negative, nothing needs to be corrected.”
Cromer said the City of Miami's utility revenues are doing very well.
The audit found no findings with controls or compliance that needed to be addressed, according to Cromer.
The financial audit has been submitted to the state.
Financial highlight's included an increase in the City's net position by $2,111,734 or 5.8 percent from the prior year. In the City’s business-type activities, such as utilities, program revenues exceeded expenses by $5.4 million. At June 30, 2016, the General Fund reported an unassigned fund balance of $43,293.
For budgetary reporting purposes, the General Fund reported revenues under estimates of $162,885 or 2.1 percent, while expenditures were under the final appropriations by $881,451 or 8.3 percent.
For the year ended June 30, 2016, total expenses for governmental activities amounted to approximately $12.2 million which was a decrease from the prior year of 4 percent.
Total business-type activities reported net revenues of $5,388,721 for the year ended June 30, 2016. This includes revenues from water, wastewater, sanitation, electric and the airport's business. The Miami Regional Airport's operational costs exceeded revenues due to the completion of capital grants for airport construction
At the end of June 30, 2016, the City had $45.8 million invested in capital assets, net of depreciation, including police and fire equipment, buildings, park facilities, electrical infrastructure, water lines and sewer lines. This represents a net increase of $.3 million or .4% from last year. The most significant capital asset additions were $489,960 for sewer projects, $2,515,074 for street projects, and $2,815,298 for airport improvement projects.
At year-end, the City had $17.7 million in long-term debt outstanding which represents a $2.0 million decrease, or 10.3 percent, from the prior year.
The auditor commended Crawford & Associates who conducts internal auditing and the City of Miami staff for their work.
“We were here six, seven, eight years ago and it's come a long way since then as far as improving,” Cromer said. “ So, I'm delighted as I can be to see how much better it's gotten.”
Mayor Rudy Schultz thanked the staff and City Manager Dean Kruithof for keeping the City in good financial shape.
In other business, the City Council repealed parts of City Ordinance 1379 and approved Ordinance 2017-01 establishing and implementing a program to charge non-Miami Special Utility Authority non-subscription customers mitigation rates for Miami Fire and First Responder services.
The new ordinance goes into effect in 30 days. Informational letters will be sent to all affected customers in the near future. A service subscription fee of $65 per year is offered to those customers to cover any fire or first responder emergency service costs.
Council members heard from Miami Fire Chief Robert Wright about a proposal to change the Miami Fire Department's boundary. Wright has had discussions with the Wyandotte Fire Department about moving the boundary east of Miami on 590 Road to 600 Road. Miami's Fire District would expand to include the approximately 80 residences in the area and provide an even better ISO score, and emergency services closer in proximity.
“We're about five miles away, and they're about 10, so that would benefit them,” Wright said. “I think they're a 5 to 7 (ISO) and if they are within file miles they can get our 3 (ISO) rating.”
Ottawa County Commissioners would first have to approve the boundary change.
Approval of proposed City of Miami Charter changes was pushed back to the next regular city council to clarify some language in the final draft.
Scott Miller was recognized for completion of certification by the Oklahoma Code Enforcement Association. He is the fifth officer certified for the City of Miami.
Mayor Schultz announced he would be filing for reelection to office in February.
Melinda Stotts is the associate editor of the Miami News-Record. She can be emailed at email@example.com. or followed on Twitter @MelindaStotts1