Casual Chris Caldwell, the county's finance director, met today with the Knox County Commission during its monthly luncheon to talk numbers.
As you might recall, the county got about $24.2 million in extra tax revenues - it was announced in September - so everyone kind of faked surprise or outrage (depending on the elected office) and stomped their feet, and the Knox County Commission then demanded that the administration start providing quarterly reports, detailing revenue projections.
It's worth noting that the county's finance department used to give commissioners printed, detailed reports on its bank accounts. No one bothered to read these things. (I know most of mine are still collecting dust in a desk drawer.) Then, the commissioners – I think it was a few summers ago – asked that the administration put them online instead. You know, to save money on trees.
So, now we're back to where we were because no one bothered to read the online stuff, and Casual Chris now has to read it aloud to the commission.
Anyhoo, the county's sharpest dressed finance director today told the commission that the general fund is down about $3 million. He also noted that expenditures leaving the general fund are up about $1.6 million.
Yeah, not good. Heh.
In addition, though, revenues for the school system are up about $2.4 million, according to the casual one. But, expenditures are up a whopping $16.7 million.
That, however, could be a “timing thing,” Caldwell noted. In other words, this could be the time of year when school officials make purchases, etc.
Overall, Caldwell said, it's “way too early to start panicking,” adding that “at the end of December we'll get a better explanation of where we are.”