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Jul 19, 2016 5:33 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

East Hampton Town Had $4 Million Budget Surplus in 2015

Jul 19, 2016 5:33 PM

East Hampton Town ended 2015 with a more than $4 million budget surplus, and more than $14 million in rainy day reserves on hand.

The town’s independent auditors, the Melville firm Nawrocki Smith, gave the town a healthy pat on the back for its financial management in 2015, noting that the town continues its record of strong financial management since climbing out of the depths of crisis in 2009.

“The town’s outstanding performance in 2015 … was due to conservative budgeting and close monitoring of expenses and revenue flow by the finance department staff and department heads,” the auditors wrote in their assessment.

The town ended the 2015 fiscal year with a revenue surplus of nearly $4.1 million: $2.7 million in the whole-town general fund and an additional $1.6 million in the part-town budget that is dedicated to operations that do not include East Hampton Village residents.

The town now has an unrestricted surplus of about $6.5 million in its general fund and a reserve of $6.7 million in the part-town funds. The highway fund has $1.7 million in unrestricted surpluses and $1.4 million in the refuse and garbage funds. After absorbing more than $1.3 million in legal fee costs, the East Hampton Airport ended the year with an approximately $377,000 deficit, which was deducted from the airport’s $1.6 million reserve fund. The airport still has more than $1.2 million in reserves.

The town’s bonded debt decreased by 4.5 percent, from $98.4 million to $94.1 million.

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So the town board spent ALL of the airport's revenues and 1/4 of its reserves on its own attorneys, despite the fact that kind of diversion of funds is illegal under federal law. At this rate, in 3 years there will be no more reserve fund and no money to pay for the operation of the airport. They just passed a law saying the airport cannot accept any funds from the state or federal government, so in 3 years all they have to do is say there's no more money and close the airport down. That is why ...more
By localEH (406), East Hampton on Jul 20, 16 9:52 AM
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