The County of Dukes County
Statement regarding the County's General Fund Balance
Dukes_County_ma_seal.gif County of Dukes County
County Administration Building
P.O. Box 190, Edgartown, MA 02539
508-696-3840, FAX 508-696-3841

April 8, 2013

Memorandum to the Island Boards of Selectmen
Regarding the County General Fund Balance

The County Commissioners and the County Advisory Board have previously agreed that the County should have at least $100,000 in the unreserved general fund balance as a reserve for unforeseen expenses.

Since FY08 when General Fund - Fund Balance (G/F F/B) was a negative $197. The   County has worked to build the reserves. The FY09 budget was already approved when the audit report was received, so there was not much that could have been done that year.

The fund balance at the end of FY09 was $4,312. FY10’s budget was very conservative with the goal of increasing reserves. At the end of FY10 the audit showed the revenues exceeded the projections by $72,443 and the departments did not expend their total budgeted amounts by about $39,000. The total G/F F/B was $165,354 at that point. For FY11 the same approach was taken when budgeting and at the end of the year the G/F F/B was increased by another $106,882 for a total of $272,236.

In FY10 & FY11 there were some one time revenue additions that were unforeseen and not budgeted, such as $10K from a State grant, $15K Medical Part D reimbursement, $22K additional rental income etc.

In September of 2012 when the FY11 exit conference was held with the auditors, they recognized that we had nearly $300,000 in G/F F/B and recommended that we start to fund the unfunded Other Post-Employment Benefits (OPEB).  There was also discussion at that time about moving some of the funds into a capital reserve fund for future use on projects.

The County recently received preliminary results from the FY12 audit showing another substantial increase in the G/F F/B by $300,490 raising the fund balance to $572,726. This was due to several factors, the majority of which were the result of one-time unanticipated circumstances. Below I have highlighted the main contributing categories:

$209,300 in additional revenues
$68,760 was one time, unbudgeted and therefore unexpected revenues:
  • Medicare Part B reimbursement from the Cape Cod Municipal Health Group of $22,265. (All island towns received this reimbursement in FY11 & FY12.)
  • The final accounting of the Sheriff’s Department’s transfer to the state resulted in an increase of $52,142 for the G/F F/B.
  • Insurance refunds $5,193
  • Income realized from new county projects $9,684
$140,540 were revenues in excess of projections
  • Registry of Dees fees $19,085
  • County alarm fees $14,644
  • Cape and Island License Plates $10,295
  • Airport allocation of overhead of $42,002
  • Deeds Excise by $20,933
  • Retiree health reimbursement $5,385
$91,461 – since departments did not spend to budgeted limits
  • The Sheriff’s Maintenance of Effort in FY2012 was allocated at $456,870 instead of the projected $501,703 leaving a budget balance of $33,878
  • Savings on the Courthouse and Administration Building budgets due to some projects not being implemented - $24,177
  • Savings at the County Commissioners Dept. due to the departure of the County Manager $7,015
  • Retiree benefits cost was $5,570 lower than budgeted
  • Savings in the Veteran’s Department $7,713
Since the County had achieved savings in the amount of $572,726 the County Commissioners and the County Advisory Board agreed to distribute $150,000 to the towns from the G/F F/B. The allocation was based on the county tax assessment formula (equalized valuation percentage). The checks were distributed to the towns last week. See below the breakdown.

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Martina Thornton
County Manager
County of Dukes County
P.O. Box 190
Edgartown, MA 02539

tel.   508-696-3840
fax  508-696-3841