City of Portsmouth to close 2016 books

By Frank Lewis

The city of Portsmouth is preparing to close its books for 2016. At the next Portsmouth City Council meeting, members will most likely suspend the rules requiring an ordinance be read on three separate occasions, and authorize City Auditor Trent Williams to amend appropriations to reflect actual revenues an expenditures in order to balance and close the city’s books for fiscal year 2016.

“That is an annual ordinance that authorizes me to amend the appropriations where needed to end the year with our appropriations in line,” Williams told The Community Common. “It is needed to increase some of the appropriations very slightly and decrease others just to bring everything into balance.”

The city’s Finance Department prepares reports that reflect the city’s revenues, appropriations and expenditures throughout the year. The annual budget and supplemental appropriations through the year serve as a guide for projected revenue and spenging obligations for the year.

Williams said, when actual revenues or expenditure obligations deviate significantly from projected figures, it becomes necessary for City Council to adjust appropriations to maintain a balanced budget. Those figures will fluctuate as they continue to collect revenues and make expenditures in the next few weeks.

Under-appropriated funds and accounts should be increased as necessary to cover year-end expenses, Williams said. He said, over-appropriated funds and accounts necessary to decrease appropriations cannot be fully known at this time, as they are still being received, but he said they should b e authorized wherever necessary to be reduced at year-end to reflect actual revenue correlating with the city’s final amended certificate to be filed with the Scioto County Budget Commission.

The proposed ordinance will be requested to authorize and direct the preparation of legislation as a consent agenda item to authorize the City Auditor to amend appropriations in order to balance and close the city’s books for fiscal year 2016.

A consent agenda item usually means someone will move to suspend the rule requiring an ordinance be read on three separate occasions. After that is done, the ordinance is voted on.

Reach Frank Lewis at 740-353-3101, ext. 1928, or on Twitter @franklewis.