OpEd: Financial Emergency.
From the pages of the 2011 Financial Statements (finally presented in July 2012):
Note that L Lakes now meet two conditions for state of financial emergency- 90 days late in payment and multiple deficit balances in net assets.
Earlier in 2011, the City had to notify the State for financial emergency three times and Broward County tried to turn them in also. First BSO turned them in for late, non-payment of contract. Then City filed a weak notice saying nothing was wrong. Then Broward County forced the City again to declare with State as a condition of the $9.2m loan agreement. And finally BC filed on its own to try and get the State involved.
Now some 9 months later with the audited financial statements, we see there is more- deficit fund balances of $8.9m.
Gets worser and worser?
Shows five significant deficiencies in internal controls
Shows deficit unassigned fund balance of $8.9m ($4.9m to General Fund)
Shows prior findings from 2010 carried over to 2011 (now repeated)
And our favorite as MAOS has reported on this many times. Not balancing pooled cash.
- The infamous Aug 18, 2011 letter from the clueless FD ME saying they were not balancing cash, did not know what cash belonged to what fund, could not pay bills (including BSO), etc.
- The Sep 2011 Resolution approved authorizing to use any cash from any source to pay bills.
- The infamous Resolution to delay payment of $428k to Wmgt so as to have cash to pay bills. In turn W Mgt gets a free ride next contract time- no bid.
- Mysteriously increasing the BSO contract debt from $8.1m to .2m on Sep 30, 2011 prior to slipping it to BC.
- The confusing 2011 financial statements that somehow shows $4.6m in cash yet we know the City only had $1.4m cash in hand on Sep 30, 2011.
- All financial reports prepared for 2012 (including those submitted to BC) had different beginning cash amounts brought forward from 2011. We keep saying that can’t happen- that is a fixed amount but apparently with L Lakes FD ME and JA’s math, that is appropriate. Trust me, this is the right thing to do…
Which brings us to the real point.
Has City notified the State of the new condition adding big time to the financial emergency? We have not seen it. Maybe the dynamic trio of JA, EH and City Atty JB did not report because this was damaging information. That has been the rationale for withholding information on many public record requests and EH on record “branding traitors” for releasing damaging information (although public info we might add).
Getting better you say…