County, gopher district finances audited

Certified Public Account Kurt Folke of Quest CPAs reviews Payette County’s 2020 audited financial statements with the Payette County Board of Commissioners Monday. No major issues were found in this audit, or that of the Payette County Gopher District.

PAYETTE — As Payette County officials work to keep their proverbial ducks in a row, as well as plug any gopher holes which may pop up, public accountants from Quest CPAs have been working in the background to ensure that they’ve done things right, if but from a financial standpoint. Certified Public Accountants Kurt Folke and Dan Coleman presented the organization’s audits of Payette County’s financial statements and those of its Gopher Extermination District at the County Board of Commissioners’ regular meeting on Monday.

The county audit, dated Feb. 9, covered financial statements of governmental and business-type activities, component units, each major fund and the aggregate remaining fund reports, with the gopher district’s audit, dated Nov. 9, covering its income, expenditures and savings. The statements account for the fiscal year ended Sept. 30.

Following are samples of information provided in the audit.

As far as saving money for a rainy day, Folke said the county had done a good job doing so this time around.

“We’re sitting there … a little more than 10-month operating reserve; We’re in good shape right there,” said Folke.

He specifically noted that the county’s justice fund was particularly buoyant, with a seven-month operating reserve in place. He recommends at least six months’ reserve.

On that note, Folke recognized the county wasn’t spending as much in court costs due to pandemic restrictions on courtroom operations.

Folke affirmed that the county received reimbursements it was owed in the wake of COVID-19 pandemic spending.

As far as governmental activities, he gave the county a ‘qualified’ opinion, indicating information was limited in scope, based on officials electing not to adapt provisions of the Governmental Accounting Standards Board’s GASB 75, ‘Accounting and Financial Reporting for Post-employment Benefits Other Than Pensions.’

“The amount by which the departure would affect net position, assets, liabilities, deferred outflows of resources, deferred inflows of resources, expenses, note disclosures, and required supplementary information has not been determined,” the report read. 

An adverse opinion was given based on a lack of financial data for the Payette County Ambulance District.

“The financial statements do not include financial data for the Payette County Ambulance District, the County’s third legally separate component unit which would normally be reported as discretely presented,” according to the report. “Accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America require financial data for the County’s legally separate component units to be reported with the financial data of the County’s primary government. However, current audited financial statements for the component unit are unavailable.”

In an email Thursday, County Clerk Lindsey Bratcher indicated that ambulance district finances are accounted for under the city of Fruitland’s financial statements.

Otherwise, Folke indicated that available statements did fairly reflect the financial position of the Payette County Abatement District and the Payette County Fair, each major fund and the remaining fund data for the county.

“In our opinion, the combining and individual non-major fund financial statements are fairly stated in all material respects in relation to the basic financial statements as a whole.”

County finances

Net positions

Total current assets

• Governmental activities: $12,079,026

• Business-type activities: $6,099,657

• Total primary government: $18,178,683

• Component units: $744,896

Total assets and deferred outflows of resources

• Governmental activities: $17,187,185 

• Business-type activities: $10,054,336 

• Total primary government: $27,241,521 

• Component units: $1,107,645 

Total liabilities

• Governmental activities: $4,885,893 

• Business-type activities: $2,656,914 

• Total primary government: $7,542,807  

• Component units: $32,931 

Program revenues

Total governmental activities

• Expenses: $11,597,151

• Charges for services: $2,577,944

• Operating grants and contributions: $182,548

• Capital grants and contributions: $0

• Net (expense) revenue: ($8,836,659)

Changes in net position

Beginning

• Governmental activities: $10,963,363

• Business-type activities: $6,708,200

• Total primary government: $17,761,563

• Component units: $817,240

Ending

• Governmental activities: $12,201,576

• Business-type activities: $7,378,503

• Total primary government: $19,580,079

• Component units: $1,074,714

Total fund balances

• General (current expense) Fund: $2,605,076

• Road and bridge fund: $1,177,937

• District court fund: $331,319

• Justice fund: $2,880,061

• Indigent and charity fund: $494,691

• Court facility fund: $821,927

• Other governmental funds: $2,615,184

• Total governmental funds: $10,926,195

The audits “went well” for the county, according to Folke. 

Gopher Extermination District

Coleman relayed the company’s report on the Gopher Extermination District statements to the board.

He noted that while a significant levy increase had occurred within the district, nothing in its statements indicated anything misleading and the district received an unmodified opinion.

“No findings with this audit, we’re in good shape,” said Coleman.

Following are samples of information taken from the district’s audit.

Statement of net position

Total liabilities and net position: $222,492

• Expenses: $115,879

• Charges for service: $15,192

• Operating/Capital grants and contributions: $0

• Governmental activities: ($100,687)

Total fund balances: $212,409

• Total liabilities and deferred inflows of resources and fund balances: $216,265

Net position of governmental activities: $222,492

Total revenues: $149,184

• Tax revenue: $132,542

• Gopher control fees: $15,192

• Interest: $1,450

Total expenditures: $114,881

Fund balances

• Beginning: $178,106

• Ending: $212,409

“The District’s basic financial statements include both government-wide (reporting the District as a whole) and fund financial statements (reporting the District’s major funds),” according to the report. “Both government-wide and fund financial statements categorize primary activities as either governmental or business type. Currently, all the District’s activities are categorized as governmental activities.”

Coleman noted that the district is attempting to save money towards a new building to house its offices, possibly through levy dollars over the next four years. 

“I think they anticipate the building costing $650,000,” said Coleman.

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