May 10, 2017
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
City of Kingston’s favorable 2016 financial performance yields $823,613 increase in unassigned fund balance
KINGSTON, N.Y. Mayor Steve Noble is pleased to announce that the City of Kingston’s General Fund unassigned fund balance increased by $823,613 in 2016 to a total of $5,519,836. This amount is 13.3% of the City's 2017 General Fund budgeted expenditures and now in excess of the City's adopted fund balance policy, which calls for a fund balance level of 10-13%.
“We have worked diligently with each department to implement and maintain responsible spending practices that have resulted in this excellent increase in our unassigned fund balance,” stated Mayor Noble. “I appreciate the efforts of all of my staff who have heeded my administration’s call to do more with less.”
The City’s Comptroller, John Tuey, has recommended that the Common Council use $441,440 of fund balance to pay off a portion of the City’s short term debt. This action would provide recurring interest savings, as well as future budgetary flexibility that Tuey recommends to be used to fund vehicle and other short life capital expenditures in order to reduce the need to bond for such assets. A reduction of $441,440 from the City’s fund balance would bring the City's unassigned fund balance calculation to l2.2% of budgeted expenditures, which is still in the upper range of the City’s targeted fund balance levels.
“This move will reduce interest costs and will be returned to the City over the next three years in $441,440 of budgetary savings,” said Tuey.
Included with Tuey’s recommendations was a letter from the City's debt fiscal advisor, Noah Nadelson, Chief Executive Officer of Munistat Services, Inc., which stated:
“…the City has been able to improve its financial position (and credit rating) through prudent fiscal management. The City has maintained an aggressive amortization with its borrowings, and the General Fund debt profile is strong. Paying off some of the outstanding notes is another example of thoughtful financial planning…”
The matter will be discussed and considered by the Common Council in the coming month.