FARMINGTON — Sales tax revenue rose and debt decreased during the 2011-12 fiscal year, a recently released audit of city finances shows.
The ongoing development of Station Park, a $250 million project in the heart of this city, translated into a surge in sales tax revenue, the audit said. Sales tax revenue was up more than 20 percent, from $1.97 million in 2010-11 to $2.38 million for the fiscal year, which ended June 30. During the same time frame, the city’s total debt decreased by $2.1 million. The city’s total debt is currently $7.2 million.
“Overall, it was a very good audit,” said Mike Ulrich, of Ulrich & Associates PC, of Ogden, regarding the 122-page review of city finances and practices.
There were minor findings as part of the audit. Those findings pointed out the city showed deficit fund balances for the Station Park Redevelopment Agency and Building GO bond funds, which is a violation of state law.
City officials anticipate the deficit for the Station Park fund will disappear in March, when city officials will begin collecting tax increment money. Keith Johnson, director of city finances, said the Building GO bond will be funded by a transfer from the general fund during the current fiscal year.
The audit also showed the city ended the fiscal year with a fund balance of $1.047 million, which represents
14.9 percent of budgeted revenue. State law allows a maximum fund balance of 18 percent. Of the fund balance, approximately $959,559 is unassigned.
Other highlights include:
• City assets exceeded liabilities at the end of the fiscal year by $84.4 million. That represents an increase in assets of $4.3 million from the previous year.
• Besides an increase in sales tax, city revenues from property tax, building permits and engineering fees all went up. Overall city revenues were up $772,041 for the fiscal year.
• The city’s ambulance and recreation funds operated at a deficit. City officials have used general fund revenues to subsidize the recreation department for years, particularly the city pool. The good news from the report, Johnson said, is that the pool broke even during the past year.
City officials attributed the deficit in the ambulance fund to reimbursements. The ambulance fund showed a loss of $32,637 for the year while the recreation fund showed a deficit of $288,464.
• The city’s water fund has been stabilized, thanks to recent changes in water rates. The fund showed a positive balance of $83,089 at the end of the fiscal year.
“We’re real proud of that water number. It’s taken a few years,” City Manager Dave Millheim said of the audit finding.
The water fund showed a deficit at the end of the 2009-10 fiscal year.
City officials approved a 40 percent water rate increase at the beginning of the 2010-11 fiscal year to attempt to correct the problem.