by Colin Smith
According to the numbers, Morinville’s finances are in good shape.
That’s the word from Curtis Friesen of Metrix Group LLP who presented the 2019 audited financial statements to Town Council at its regular meeting Tuesday.
In his remarks on the financial statements, Friesen noted that both increased revenue and increased spending in 2019 was in line with that year’s budget.
He pointed out that much of the increased spending was related to the newly opened Morinville Leisure Centre.
Revenues rose last year to $22,217,934 from $20,369,483 in 2018, an increase of about 8%.
The largest source of revenue is taxation, which brought in $9,948,305 in 2019 compared to $9,248,052 the previous year.
Water fees brought in $2,856, 483 and wastewater and storm fees $2,149,342.
In 2019 expenses totalled $28,504,206, rising 15% from $24,641,344 in 2018.
Parks and recreation saw the biggest rise in expenditure, going from $2,917,051 to $4,976,172. The cost of protective services rose by some $365,000 to $3,372,159.
Public works were the most expensive item at $6,029, 292, with general administration coming at $5,406,595.
In 2019 expenses exceeded revenue to produce an annual deficit of $6,286,272.
Other items – contributed tangible capital assets and government transfers for capital – brought in an additional $1,361,612, cutting the annual deficit to $4,924,660.
Government grants still to come are expected to reduce the deficit still further.
The previous year saw a surplus of $8,417,555.
At the beginning of 2019, Morinville had an accumulated surplus of $141,742,561, which represents the book value of all the Town’s assets. That dropped to $136,817,901 by the end of the year.
Morinville’s net debt at the close of 2019 was $12,888,913, up from $6,378,639 the previous year, but less than the budgeted $13,996,356.
Each year Municipalities are required to have the municipal auditor to report to Council on the audited financial statements for the previous year.
The auditor must report to Council any improper or unauthorized circumstances or non-compliance noted during the course of the audit.
The Metrix Group report indicated that no irregularities were found in the audit.