Citizens For A Better Norwood

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Finally, Norwood’s fiscal watch may be drawing to a close

On October 7, 2004 the Auditor of State declared Norwood to be in a state of fiscal watch. Today’s Enquirer says that because the City recently submitted financial documents to the AOS the state may lift the designation within the next few months. It may very well be that one of these documents is the long overdue 2006 GAP (General Accepted Principles) report we blogged about here on 6/3/07:

According to our AOS source, the state needs only two more documents from the City before our collective financial nightmare is over : 1.) Auditor Jones must submit a 2006 GAP (General Accepted Principles) report to the AOS, and then 2.) the City must formally request an analysis. With regard to the former, Mr. Thompson (AOS official) told council that as of a month ago, Mr. Jones was looking at how he would accomplish the GAP report, and our source told us a representative from Mr. Jones’ office met recently with an AOS official to discuss the matter.

It appears current City Auditor Jim Stith (and perhaps other City officials, too) has accomplished what former Auditor Donnie Jones did not accomplish prior to his resignation last year, that is, submit documents necessary for the state to consider removing the City from fiscal watch. Another positive for the state to consider is Mr. Stith’s five-year financial forecast showing Norwood maintaining a positive balance through 2014. He told the Enquirer, "There are some years in the future where we can see our expenditures exceeding our revenues. But we have money in the bank to carry over to compensate for that."

So far, our City Auditor seems be a pretty good forecaster. He told the Enquirer this past December, “If revenue projections hold true, the city could be taken off the state's fiscal watch list next year." And now that our elected officials have brought us back from the brink, it would nice if the Enquirer’s Peter Bronson would revisit and update what he wrote in August, 2006 about our city being mismanaged. Unfortunately, mismanaged seems to better describe the current state of the City of Cincinnati's finances.