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Brookhaven Town audit reports strong financial position

Brookhaven Town Hall is pictured in an undated

Brookhaven Town Hall is pictured in an undated photo. Photo Credit: Newsday / Bill Davis

Brookhaven officials reported the town’s annual audit shows a strong financial position as its total fund balance increased more than $13 million in the past year.

Brookhaven collected $311.9 million in total revenue during 2016, with the funds coming from revenue programs and revenue generators such as mortgage taxes, landfill fees, cable franchise fees, and building fees and fines, town officials said.

The town has $142.4 million in reserve funds, the audit reported.

“We have a huge surplus,” Brookhaven Town Supervisor Edward P. Romaine said. “We had a very good report.”

The audit, prepared by Hauppauge-based auditing firm Albrecht, Viggiano, Zureck & Co., P.C., covered the period from Jan. 1, 2016, to Dec. 31.

Commissioner of Finance Tamara Wright plans to release a detailed version of the audit to board members at Thursday’s town meeting.

Brookhaven has $56.9 million in its general fund, according to the report. Capital project spending decreased $3 million from $68 million the previous year. The unassigned general fund balance improved $5.5 million to $45.5 million, town officials said.

Standard & Poor’s ratings agency in April reaffirmed Brookhaven’s AAA credit rating — the highest designation the agency issues — citing the town’s strong fiscal position.

A high municipal credit rating allows it to get a better interest rate when borrowing. S&P in April noted Brookhaven’s strong budgetary flexibility, liquidity, management and ability to improve budgetary performance, and reported the agency doesn’t expect the rating to change over the next two years.

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