M’boro Council hears audit report

Published 1:15 pm Saturday, June 13, 2009

MURFREESBORO – The Town of Murfreesboro has been given “an unqualified opinion for June 30, 2008,” auditor Jim Winston with the Winston, Williams, Creech Evans and Co., Certified Public Accountants, firm of Oxford told the town council Tuesday.

“That’s what we want…,” he continued. “Everything was fine.”

But the auditor also sounded a warning.

“I hope when we come to June 30, 2009 we’re in as good shape as we were at June 30, 2008,” he said, adding that he expects sales tax receipts to be down “because everything is tanking – some places worse than others.”

He qualified that, though, saying, “It may not impact you as much as some others because you’re not a big retail center.”

Winston said “the only negative thing” he saw in the audit was that “the tax levy and collections declined. But,” he added, “I can tell you that (because of the economy) you’re not the Lone Ranger.

“I would remind you,” he said, “that you cannot budget higher than your previous year’s tax collections.”

In conclusion, Winston told the council, “You had a pretty good year, I thought.”

In other action Tuesday, the council, having conducted a brief public hearing before convening in regular council session, formally adopted the Town’s 2009-2010 budget on a motion by Sarah Wallace and a second by Lloyd Hill.

The budget’s adoption followed two 4-hour workshop sessions last month and other consideration in regular council sessions.

The budget ordinance sets the Town’s tax rate at 0.68 cents per $100 valuation.

General Fund total revenues are budgeted at $1,846,442; Water and Sewer Fund revenues at $1,263,500; and E-911 Fund revenue at $33,000.

Approved at the meeting was a special event permit for the North Carolina Watermelon Festival July 29-Aug. 1.

According to the application, the event is expected to attract some 30,000 people, as many as 7,500 at one time.