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Park district shows positive financial steps in audit

PRINCETON — The Princeton Park District has done a good job in bringing in more money than it spent during the 2011-12 fiscal year.

At Monday’s park board meeting, district executive director Elaine Russell reviewed the 2011-12 audit, saying her goal for the year had been to increase cash and to stop “spending down”. The audit shows the district has done a good job of that, she said.

All 11 funds in the park district’s budget have ended the year with positive balances, having an increase in cash over the previous year, Russell said.

In giving examples, Russell said the recreation fund had a deficiency of a negative $52,291 in 2011, but had an excess of revenues over expenditures of $83,517 in 2012. Also, the corporate/general fund had a deficiency of a negative $134,175 in 2011, but had an excess of revenues over expenditures of $32,517 in 2012. The combined statement of revenues and expenditures in all 11 funds was up $168,656 over the 2011 year, she said.

Explaining the better numbers, Russell said she and the staff created a budget based on the needs of the district and stayed true to those figures. Also, the staff worked diligently throughout the year on decreasing expenditures and increasing revenues, she said.

In response to the executive director’s report, district attorney Bob Russell said he wanted to note the significance of the positive numbers presented. The increase in revenue is the result of efficiencies by the district staff and not because of an increase in taxes, he said.

The board will approve the 2011-12 audit at its December meeting.

In other business at Monday’s meeting, the park board has awarded the district’s $810,000 in general obligation bonds to Centrue Bank of Princeton.

Bob Russell said the district received two bids for the bonds, though letters were sent to four area banks. Centrue Bank’s low bid was at a 1.3 percent interest rate, with all fees included. The second bid came from Midland States Bank, with a bid of 1.89 percent. Both bids were excellent, he said.

As reported earlier, the park board typically issues about $800,000 in general obligation bonds each fall to handle operating expenses before taxes and other revenue sources are received.

In still other business at Monday’s meeting, the board went into closed session to discuss, among other items, the selection of a person to fill a board vacancy created last month by the resignation of Carl Pacunas. The board came back into open session and announced the appointment of Andy Marti to fill the vacancy.

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