The City of Cobbtown held their regularly scheduled meeting on Monday evening. Mayor Buddy Collins called the meeting order with an invocation and prayer. After reviewing the minutes from the July meeting, the Mayor noted to the room that the financial statements for the council members were past due for the July 31 filing. The interim clerk asked that the council members submit their paperwork as soon as possible.
Following the housekeeping items, council moved to the most recent financial statements for the Cobbtown bank accounts. The town, which recently purchased a large 18-acre parcel of land for their soon-to-be built fire department, could be facing some financial hurdles in the coming months.
The Profit & Loss statement for the Cobbtown General Fund shows the city with a net income of -$40,276.40 for the period ranging January 2016 to July 2016.
Cobbtown collects alcohol beverage taxes, business license fees, Department of Transportation funds, franchise taxes, Intergovernmental revenue, SLOST money, Verizon leases and just over $1,000 in miscellaneous revenue for a grand total of $69,544 in total income for the first six months of the year. Alarming, however, is the $109,821.20 in expenses ranging from advertisements and maintenance expenses, to street costs, employee salaries, contract works, and utilities. The priciest expenditure outside of salaries is the $25,904.79 electricity bill. Behind that is the $17,387.99 spent on streets and highways, a huge expense for a town less than a complete square mile, totaling just 444 acres.
The balance of the general fund remains at $497,068.56, due in part to a Certificate of Deposit in the amount of $406,413.39. While the fund is still positive, continued spending at a rate exceeding $40,000 bi-annually will have the town in dire financial straights before long, as all the money in the general fund isn’t readily accessible.Only $63,890 is cash in an operating account.
The utility account also showed over $3,600 in then red for the first six months of the year. Collecting $29,514.70 in water, trash & fire billing, water deposits (which cannot be spent), and miscellaneous revenue is not enough to cover the $33,155.24 in expenses. The city spent $9,114.70 on repairs and maintenance and nearly $12,000 on contracted labor – meaning $2,000 per month in labor contracts. The Cobbtown utility account balance holds at $53,110.67 as of July 31.
The SPLOST account, which is a big asset for the City of Cobbtown showed a -$52,667.94 net income for January-July 2016. $7,925.89 in SPLOST income was awarded while $60,593.83 was spent on the fire department. Just $39,957.70 remains in the SPLOST account, though this fund is usually replenished by the county.
While Cobbtown’s bank funds are not in the negative as a whole, spending that far exceeds the income will not be sustainable forever.
Mayor Buddy Collins told the room that a private golf company out Boston, MA was considering Cobbtown for a private golf course location. Collins told members of the public the private entity would bring substantial money to the town, however, Cobbtown does not assess property taxes so it is unclear where the funds will come from outside of business licenses and water bills.