The cash balance sheet reveals just $758,615 in the city's general fund. I reviewed this with a financial expert, who tells me that is "not very much cash at this time of the year. How are they going to make it through the year with that kind of money? This raises more questions than it answers. You've got to have more cash in there somewhere or they're in deep trouble." In the 2009 budget, nearly $35 million is set aside for payroll. My anonymous finance maven wonders whether the city will be able to make payroll with so little cash in hand.
In the face of these dire financial straights, Allentown's Budget and Finance Committee met last night tro rearrange the deck chairs on the sinking ship known as Allentown. Guess who chairs it? That's right, none other than Michael "Muzzles" Donovan. He has his own report right here, in which he incidentally gives himself a B- for his performance as a "councilor."
So what does Muzzles propose? Cuts? Furloughs? Reducing the salaries of city councilors? Nah. Let's just borrow our way out of this jam! That's right, the city is going to borrow money, but it's for "fire trucks, firefighter radios, critical information technology infrastructure improvements, street repairs, and the possibility of moving and expanding police patrol headquarters."
Everyone loves firetrucks.
Muzzles promises this is no scam. No siree. The city would never borrow money for capital projects and then use it for operating expenses. Except when it did. It floated a bond a few years ago to end Allentown's financial nightmare. It was very controversial. Many people were killed. But that was then.
As Muzzles explains, "I'll stress that the funds do not sit in the General Fund. They sit in the Capital Fund until appropriated for use by the Council."
This is a promise from a "Councilor" who refuses to follow his own Home Rule Charter, so I don't think it will be long before some or most of that borrowed money finds its way into the general fund. Call it a hunch. After all, Councilors must be paid.
Allentown Cash Balance Sheet
General Fund: $1,809,636 less $1,051,021 from Trexler Fund = $758,615
2006 Loan Fund: $5,184.995
Capital Fund: $1,623,110
Water Fund: $1,212,399
Sewer Fund: $4,754,898
Debt Service: 0 -
Equipment Fund: $214.570
EIT Escrow: $12,107,533
Solid Waste: $1,076,785
Golf Fund: $297,043
Total available: $28,280,969 less $1,051,021 = $27,229.948
Risk Management: $5,211,039
Workers Comp Trust: $972,001
Escrow Lancaster 0 -
Trexler Park ($1,051,021)
PA Motor Holding Accounts: $597,426
SRE : $75,378
SRE Interim: $3,534
Per Capita: $39,148
Water/Sewer Collection: $399,912
Payroll Withholding: $637,930
Total Excluded Cash: $ 7,915,388 less$ 1,051.021 = $8,966,409
Total Cash $ 36,196.357
Above Includes receipts to 3/17/09 and expenditures to 3/23/09
NOTE: Temporary borrowing is for this schedule only. Funds were not transferred- To cover negative cash the Trexlar Fund borrowed from the General Fund
The total of the 4th quarter 2008 distribution for the City is $1,982,850.84.