Clanton receives favorable audit

Published 1:34 pm Tuesday, January 24, 2017

By JOYANNA LOVE/ Senior Staff Writer

CLANTON — The city of Clanton received a favorable audit for the fiscal year ending Sept. 30, 2016.

The Clanton City Council received a report on the audit during its Jan. 23 meeting.

Janice Hull of Hull and Russell presented the report.

“Everything looks good,” Hull said.

Hull said the city cooperated fully with the process and there were no issues of noncompliance.

“Your numbers look really good,” Hull said.

The audit states that the city of Clanton’s investments in general obligation warrants is rated AA- by Standard and Poor’s and A2 by Moody’s. The estimated value of the city’s brokerage account was $1.6 million.

“During the year, you did borrow the money to pay off that pledge to the Jeff State, when you did that we removed some land … then when we removed the pledge payable that left a prior period adjustment of about $364,000,” Hull said.

Under the budgeted versus actual comparison, the audit states “Revenues of the city exceeded budget amounts by $900,510. Expenditures were over budget by $1,470,203.”

The contribution to Jeff State and transfers from the fund balance resulted in a negative in the fund balance of $1,704,755.

Hull said $1 million of this had been transferred from the fund balance to pay on debt and get a lower interest rate.

Revenues from water and sewer were up over the previous year.

A letter accompanying the audit stated the auditors “identified no material weakness or significant deficiencies in internal control.” However, the auditors recommended that “separation of duties in the cash area could be improved.”

The suggestion centered on when someone is out of the office.

“On days when someone is out, our recommendation is to find a way to separate accounting duties from cash and collections. This is not unusual in organizations of your size, and there is no cost-effective way to overcome that problem,” the auditors stated.

Mayor Billy Joe Driver said there is a division of duties in the handling of cash.

“We have a pretty good check and balance here,” Driver said.

Driver said the only way to further divide the duties would be to hire additional employees.

Submitting financial statements to the Electronic Municipal Market Access with six months was also recommended.