Auditor: City should cease deficit spending

Audit quote
Graphic by Brian Hughes
Published: Tuesday, July 15, 2014 at 12:14 PM.

CRESTVIEW — The city’s auditors are cautioning officials about deficit spending that has been propped up by utilities revenues.

Alan Jowers of Carr, Riggs and Ingram says the city’s unassigned fund balance has steadily declined.

"We're seeing annual deficits for the last four years," he said during the city council's Monday meeting. "What that means is the city is spending more than it's bringing in.

"Continued deficit spending and continued transfers from utility funds can lead to problems."

The city is nowhere near the financial straits that have led state and federal officials to threaten to take over other cities’ finances, Jowers said.

Jowers' report should be a wake-up call against fiscal irresponsibility, Councilwoman Robyn Helt said.

“What I heard you say in no uncertain terms is you have detected a trend that is not sustainable for our city to continue to operate along, and that is overspending,” Helt said.

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