Audit report: Atlas Township fund balance steady

By David Fleet
Atlas Twp. — On Monday night at the board of trustees meeting, Wesley Messing, a CPA, principal and audit partner for King & King, presented the annual financial statements and auditor’s report for the township’s fiscal year ending March 31, 2022.
According to the audit, for the fiscal year 2021-22 the general fund balance for the township was about $2.4 million.
“Everything went well,” said Messing. “Over the last few years the fund balance has been maintained and in general it’s been going up. They did add to the balance this year.”
The township’s governmental activities net position increased by $644,881. This compares to a net increase of $825, 410 for the 2022-23 fiscal year. The hike was due to an increase in revenues for State Shared Revenues, property taxes and grants. Expenses also increased by a larger margin than revenues. The township realized increases among all programs.
The township’s primary source of revenue is from property taxes and state shared revenues, which represent 86% of total revenue.
“I don’t really see any alarming issues for the township,” he said. “The general fund is very healthy for a township your size. We still are holding ARPA money. You have until Dec. 31, 2024 to commit those funds and another two years to spend them.”
The Michigan Townships Association and the State of Michigan both would say a healthy fund balance is defined as 25 percent of your current year revenue, according to King & King.
The fund balance represents the surplus that the township may have. It is the excess of the township assets above its liabilities (what the district owns minus what it owes). While cash is an asset, it’s only one of many of an institution’s assets. Others include: accounts receivable, prepaid expenses, supplies, equipment and buildings.
The increase in general fund balance comes after the first decrease since 2017. Over that time the fund balance had grown from $1,164,467 in 2016 to about $2,400,00 in 2023.

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