FY ’16 audit: Revenue $1.5 million more than expenses

The city’s recently released audit for Fiscal Year 2016 is a detailed, 152-page document, full of graphs, balance sheets, spreadsheets and text, but Chief Administrative Officer Mike Leonard says there are a couple of facts that are especially important.

“To put it simply,” Leonard said, “city revenues for the period were $1.5 million higher than expenses, which allowed our actual cash reserves to grow. The city’s overall net position was stable, and this was reflected by the most recent Standard & Poor’s bond rating of AA-, which indicates a stable financial position.”

The annual audit, actually called the Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (or “caff-ra”), provides an accurate and complete financial position of the city, as of Sept. 30, 2016, the end of the most recent fiscal year. It’s a financial snapshot in time.

Perhaps the most important part of the CAFR is its overview, known as a Letter of Transmittal. This 10-page highlight shows 10-year trends in key municipal economic indicators: revenue from sales, gaming and property taxes; building permits and their valuations.

The CAFR is shared with credit-rating agencies, regulators and those interested in a detailed financial analysis of the city. In fact, one of those agencies, Standard & Poor’s Financial Services, in February affirmed the city’s excellent credit rating of “AA-/Stable,” based on the city’s economy, financial management and ability to pay its debt.  An AA rating is the second highest on a 10-point scale, which ranges from AAA to D, and an AA rating, S&P says, differs from the highest rating “only to a small degree.”
See the Letter of Transmittal
See the entire Comprehensive Annual Financial Report
See other financial information


Billfish news and notes

Watch out, fish: The armada of billfish boats left Point Cadet Marina this morning in a multi-million-dollar parade of boats along the Biloxi channel. To see the sight from the air, click here.

Podcasting: Larry Sablich, manager of Biloxi’s public harbors and piers, takes you inside the Mississippi Gulf Coast Billfish Classic in this week’s City Desk podcast. You can also hear the latest on the Saints weekend. To listen to the program, which was recorded this morning, click here.

More billfish: More than 2,600 people have viewed the aerial video of the billfish fleet at Point Cadet from Wednesday night.  You could be the next one. Click here.