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Polk County Enterprise - Local News

Copyright 2012 - Polk County Publishing Company

 

Appraisal District gets favorable audit

 

BY VALERIE REDDELL
Editor
polknews@gmail.com

LIVINGSTON — The Polk Central Appraisal District got a favorable audit report during Monday’s monthly meeting of the board of directors. Darla Dear of Belt Harris Pechacek LLLP presented the report and presented an “unqualified” opinion of the financial reports reviewed and found no material misstatements. Dear said auditors found a positive variance when comparing the budget to actual expenditures, showing the district did not exceed the budget set by the board. The audit report did include a few management recommendations and those will be covered when a complete copy of the audit report is delivered to the taxing entities and the newspaper in the next few days, Chief Appraiser Chad Hill said. The district also moved to adopt a fund balance policy, which states that the CAD will notify the taxing entities of any excess funds available at the end of the budget year and will provide written notification of how those funds will be handled — either distributed back to the taxing entities or used for a capital expenditure that would require a future investment by participating entities. Board member Mike Nettles pointed out that although Livingston ISD did get $20,000 back last year from a remaining fund balance, the school district was far more concerned about the $2 million in revenue they lost because the comptroller determined the appraisals were out of compliance. Hill is confident that he can get long-standing problem with the property value study resolved. “I want to know how (the entities) feel and what they want us to do with their money,” Hill said. “I think it’s our place to look out for the interest of the entities we represent and it’s nice to get a little bit back, but not when we’re losing $2 million,” Nettles said. The board did agree with a suggestion by Hill that they open a separate checking account with a debit card to be used to purchase office supplies and for training expenses. Previously, an employee or a credit card that had been issued in Hill’s predecessor’s name was used when employees attended mandatory training or continuing education courses. They also paid for fuel and meals and were reimbursed after they returned and provided receipts. The board unanimously approved a suggestion by Hill that employees be advanced $50 per day for meals up to $150 and given seven days after their return to submit receipts justifying those expenses. If the employee did not provide receipts or return the difference in any unspent advanced expense money, it would be deducted from their next paycheck. Hill said he has already met with a supervisor from the Comptroller’s office that will be conducting the Property Value Study triggered since values in Livingston ISD and Onalaska were out of confidence in the last property value study. Hill said he has already pulled the information and stratified sales and the numbers “look way better,” but they pull a random sample — so we’ll cross that bridge when they come to it.”

 

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