published Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

Kimball finances earn clean bill of health from auditors

Ryan Lewis, Correspondent

KIMBALL, Tenn. — City administrators received welcome news when they found out Kimball is doing much better financially than most municipalities across the state.

Last week, Paul Johnson with auditors Johnson, Murphy & Wright, said Kimball received a “clean audit opinion” for the last fiscal year.

Kimball has $4.7 million in total assets, Johnson said, but only $165,000 in debt.

“Any company out there would love to have a ratio like that,” he said. “You can hardly beat that. There’s very little debt in the town of Kimball right now. Most towns are covered up with debt, so it’s really fortunate and looks really good.”

Johnson said Kimball’s audit included some other “really impressive numbers.”

“It’s good to hear,” Kimball Mayor David Jackson said. “The whole board and city staff should be proud because they’ve worked hard to get this good report.”

One negative in the report, which was no surprise to the board, was the city’s sewer fund, which has struggled for years trying to make a profit.

Johnson said the sewer fund had a change in net assets of $462,000 “to the good” in 2010, but in 2011 the fund lost almost $46,000 because of depreciation expenses that occur in years when the city doesn’t have grant money to use.

“That’s because in 2010 we had this huge revenue coming in with grant money. That’s why it made so much money,” he said. “The sewer fund is the biggest problem I see for the town right now.”

The board also learned that, for the second year in a row, there are no claims or pending litigation against the city.

Kimball Attorney Billy Gouger said that was a sign of good oversight by the board and a credit to the department managers who do a good job.

“It’s unusual, in all honesty, for a local government not to have any of that,” he said.

Ryan Lewis is based in Marion County. Contact him at ryanlewis34@gmail.com.

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