By MARINA WATERS
The Town of Jonesborough is starting off its new year in good financial health.
At the Town of Jonesborough Board of Mayor and Aldermen monthly meeting held on Monday, Jan. 11, the board accepted its audit report from Blackburn, Childers & Steagall that showed a clean audit with no findings.
“Overall the audit went really well as expected and anticipated,” BCS auditor Kevin Peters said at the Monday night meeting. “The opinion we issued on the financial statement is a clean, or unmodified, opinion. That’s the best opinion an auditor can give in presenting an audit.”
The town started the last fiscal year with a fund balance of $2,021,308, and ended with a fund balance of $2,112,383, a positive change in fund balance of $91,075. As for taxes, the town budgeted $1,890,500 in local sales tax and received $1,996,863, which was a specific praise in the town’s report on the audit.
“Despite these unprecedented times with COVID-19,” the report stated, “the town had a historic year in local sales tax collections. With all taxes … we budgeted $4,373,864 and received $4,479,795.”
Peters added BCS also checked the grant funds used for the town, which totaled more than $750,000. No issues were found. Those funds also included rural development funds and requirements in relation to the Jonesborough K-8 school project.
“This year, because of grant funding that was in excess to $750,000, there was some additional compliance testing we’re required to do,” Peters said. “We looked at those programs and the rural development funds. We had a clean opinion on that with no findings.”
Adam Dickson, who filled in to lead the meeting for Jonesborough Chuck Vest whom Dickson said was feeling unwell, said he felt the report was a good sign for the town’s finances.
“I’m grateful to hear everything turned out well,” Dickson said. “I think it’s a very positive sign for the financial health of the town.
Finances aren’t the only focus for the town in 2021.
Town Administrator Glenn Rosenoff’s report indicated that work on the Jackson Theatre is underway and residents can expect to see the new marquee outside of the theatre soon. According to the report, brick has been ordered to complete the exterior wall and concrete work should also begin in the coming weeks.
As for the dog park, which was discussed at last month’s BMA meeting, Rosenoff’s report said contact had been made with a representative of the Boyd Foundation and Randy Boyd would be visiting Jonesborough this month “to look at the locations for the dog park to determine whether the Foundation would continue to fund us for a park if the Board approved an alternative location.”
At last month’s BMA meeting, aldermen discussed the best site for the park. A workshop is expected to be scheduled to further discuss the different site possibilities.
The town also recently closed on the property for the new Jonesborough school site on North Cherokee Street. The design plan was unanimously approved by the design committee during its last meeting on Dec. 9. Now, the project is in the design development phase.
For more information on Jonesborough’s BMA or to catch up on the livestream, go to https://jonesborough.com/jonesboroughtn-2/.