Despite delivery, funds handled well


I attended the meeting that started the whole controversy of “stealing funds from the City of Sweet Home budget.”

I was even allowed to ask a question of the city finance director at that meeting. It quickly became apparent to me that the whole truth was – the funds had been misstated in the accounting process for quite some time.

The new finance director discovered the fact and it needed to be corrected. However, the way it was presented was lacking in grace.

If you are using a printout of your monthly budget and you do not review it as your income and outgo change, you will find yourself moving money around to keep up with the change.

After time passes you find yourself taking money from one line to another to keep the balance. However, you do not change the actual amount originally stated, then you are “taking” your money from yourself to cover the change.

A levy is another part of the City of Sweet Home’s income. A neglect of changing the cost of handling the business of operations was overlooked for a long time. The money needed to correct it was already there, it just was not “stolen” from another operation, it was corrected for the purpose of presenting clarity to the public. That is transparency.

The issue was not gracefully presented; without levy funds a severe shortage of operating funds will cause many operations to be so curtailed you the citizens are wounded. Overlook the graceless way you were told of a necessary adjustment and support your city.

People do need to be aware of what is being done with their tax money, however sometimes it needs to be seen through new eyes, that is all the finance director did, he just did not present it wisely in view of our community ideals and concerns.

Thank you for listening.


Bonnie J. Neal