By Brian Brock
For many years now, the Town of Franklin has annually violated New York Town Law by the board not auditing the town books (Section 62) and by the supervisor not releasing the end-of-year accounting (Section 29(10)). How could their malfeasance bring trouble down on our town? Possibilities include ineligibility for state assistance and lowered credit ratings.
Economic stresses on local governments and school districts are estimated by the Office of the State Comptroller. By stress, the OSC means the ability of an organization to raise enough money to pay its budgetary obligations, now or in the future.
Estimates of current fiscal stress are based on numbers in the annual financial reports (Annual Update Documents or AUD), which are used to calculate component factors such as fund balance, operating deficit, cash position, short-term debt, personnel costs, and debt service. Estimates of future susceptibility to stress are based on trends in population, age distribution, poverty rates, property values, employment base, state/federal aid, tax limits, and sales tax. Both rate the stress on a scale from zero to one hundred, with zero being the least stress. Continue reading…