By Billy Davis
Crenshaw public officials, meeting on the first day of a new fiscal year, received a positive financial report that shows town government was solvent when the previous year ended.
After revenue and expenses, Crenshaw ended the 2008-2009 fiscal year with $37,785 in the bank, according to figures prepared by financial consultant Lygunnah Bean.
The improved outlook came after town revenue exceeded its forecasted amount by 106 percent while expenses were six percent under budget.
“There’s not as much fat this year,” Bean said, referring to overdue due bills that had plagued town hall but have been whittled down.
As the mayor and aldermen reviewed the figures, Town Clerk Renee Ward explained that new accounting software in use at town hall has helped keep track of city finances.
The computer program was purchased and installed earlier in the year at Bean’s request.
“This is the first full year with the new program and the first year with an accurate account,” said Ward.
Referring to the overdue bills, Ward further explained that payment to Panola County Solid Waste was improved when town government learned it was being overcharged for garbage containers.
A recount of Solid Waste containers, also performed earlier in the year, has led to a smaller payment.
Bean and town officials also discussed misdemeanor fines, disclosing that about $20,000 in police fines have gone uncollected. But fine collections have also increased in recent months, Bean noted.
“Yes sir,” agreed Police Chief Eddie Matthews.
Bean also pointed out that the improved finances occurred under two administrations. New town mayor, Oscar Barlow, took office in July.
In other town business, aldermen set a date to hold the first hearings for town properties that are being targeted for cleanup.
The hearings will be held Thursday, October 29 at 5 p.m. at the public library.
The residents affected by the hearing must receive a certified letter from town government two weeks before the hearing date, advised town attorney Tommy Shuler.