Church Hill leaders hear glowing audit report for 2005-06

Jeff Bobo • Jan 16, 2007 at 11:03 AM

CHURCH HILL - The Church Hill Board of Mayor and Aldermen heard a glowing 2005-06 audit report Tuesday evening in what has become an annual tradition for Hawkins County's largest city.

Auditor R. Brian Price told the board its revenue was up, its expenditures were down, and the the general fund increased by $91,124 over the previous year with an ending balance of $493,085.

That was an improvement over 2004-05, when the fund balance decreased by $200,350, which Price attributed to capital outlay projects including the new fire substation and the skateboard park.

"Just like any other city, depending on what you budget and what capital outlays you've got, you have years where your fund balances increase or decrease," Price said. "The key is that you have a fund balance to do that, and your tax rate has remained steady for a number of years."

Church Hill has not increased its property tax rate since 2001.

On the revenue side, overall general fund revenues increased by $135,721 over the previous year, with the primary source of that increase being in sales tax.

The city's assets exceeded its liabilities by $10.04 million, which was an increase over the previous year of $474,884. The biggest liability was its loan debt of $2.2 million, and the bulk of that is paying off the city's new sewer treatment plant.

"This past year the city had only one new debt issue, which was a capital outlay note for $100,000 relating to the purchase of equipment and police vehicles," Price said.

The sewer system increased its net assets by $365,880, which relates mainly to sewer system improvements made with a Community Development Block Grant that was awarded in 2004 and utilized in 2005. Price said the sewer fund had a net operating loss of $93,447, as overall revenues were down in the industrial customer billings thanks partly to the closure of the Quebecor World plant.

Church Hill's public swimming pool operated at a $1,300 loss in 2005-06.

The BMA voted unanimously to approve the 2005-06 audit.

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