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County Board Still Doesn’t Know Meaning of Fiscal Sustainability

The Arlington County Board was presented the audited financial statements for Fiscal Year 2007 (ended June 30, 2007) at its December 18, 2007 recessed meeting. It’s unfortunate, however, that neither the Manager nor the CPA firm responsible for the audit spend any time discussing some of the numbers contained in the financial statements, which bear the official name of Consolidated Audited Financial Report (CAFR).

Generally, the first number this watchdog looks at is year-to-year total spending for general government expenditures, which is on page 170 this year. It shows the County Board increased spending by 9.49% in FY2007. Since inflation, as measured by the Department of Labor’s CPI, was just 2.4% during the period, it’s hard to understand how county spending is fiscally sustainable.

We’d be happy to hear from any member of the County Board who wants to justify such fiscal shenanigans. We’ll have a more indepth look at the CAFR in the next Watchdog newsletter. 


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