County reviews audit

Published 2:43 pm Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Taylor Stover

Members of the Lunenburg County Board of Supervisors listened to a presentation by Robinson, Farmer, Cox Associates, representative Taylor Stover concerning the county’s annual audit and financial report.

Stover estimated that the audit document was 25 percent thicker than in previous years due to new regulations, which include recording certain benefit amounts into the audit. This resulted in eight additional exhibits and 26 additional pages of notes.

Stover said Robinson, Farmer, Cox Associates issued three opinions for the county, that include opinions on the county’s financial statements, internal control and federal awards. He said the organization determined that those items were unmodified opinions, which Stover said is “the highest rating you can get in your report.” He noted items from pages 11-12 of the audit, which demonstrate the county’s governmental activities. Stover said the total net positions for county, the total primary came to approximately $13.6 million. The school board, Stover said, had a deficit of approximately $11.2 million.

He said this was due to the school board having approximately $12 million in net pension liabilities.

Addressing the county’s unassigned fund balance, Stover said it’s recommended that most counties have 15-20 percent of its budget as unassigned fund balance. The unassigned general fund balance for Lunenburg, according to the audit, comes to $7,792,036. The unassigned fund balance are unaccounted funds that do not have a specific spending designation.

Stover said the county’s unassigned fund balance comes to roughly 28.5 percent of the general fund balance, above what is recommended. Stover said the funds “give you a little bit of cushion there if any major expenditures come up or if any obligations do arise.”

County Administrator Tracy Gee asked if the 28.5 percent accounts for the entire budget, or strictly the general fund balance.

Stover said the unassigned fund balance account for 28.5 percent of the FY19 budget. Stover said this budget includes the school board and general fund. It does not include special revenue funds.

On Page 15 of the audit, Stover demonstrated the net change for the general fund, which experienced an increase by approximately $1.2 million.

Stover said this occurred due to the differences between the expenses or revenues that was budgeted versus what was actually spent.

Stover also addressed tax collection on page 143 of the audit. The audit cited that the percent of levy collected in 2018 was 98.33 percent. He said the work done by the county treasurer demonstrates due dilligence in tax collection.

He said that a management letter was issued to Lunenburg Department of Social Services. The department, according to Stover, had an issue with a 941 form. One is expected to be filed each quarter detailing wages and taxes paid.

He said that changes in staffing for the office manager position resulted in the 941 form being filed late. Due to this, he said the office would need to pay a penalty.

For the audit, Stover praised the ease of working with the Social Services office, the Commissioner of the Revenue office and Administration office.