RUMFORD — The town’s auditor said his inspection of finances for fiscal year 2018 showed a healthy surplus, no cash flow issues and no evidence of misappropriation of money or abuse of policies and procedures.

Accountant Ronald Smith of RHR Smith & Co. of Buxton reviews Rumford’s audit for fiscal year 2018 at a Board of Selectmen meeting Thursday. Rumford Falls Times photo by Bruce Farrin

Accountant Ronald Smith of RHR Smith & Co. of Buxton gave his review of Rumford’s fiscal 2018 audit at Thursday’s meeting of the Board of Selectmen.

He said the town had a fund balance of $3.7 million, which is close to what it has been the past three years.

“That’s a good sweet spot for the town of Rumford,” he said.

“I was asked about cash-flow issues for the town,” Smith said. “Are there any? We don’t see them.”

He said the audit did show symptoms of some problems, “with a couple of the projects that you had, with The Island (water and sewer line construction) and financing, and reimbursing yourself back some cash flow, but it really hasn’t been to the point where your cash flow has deteriorated significantly enough to say that you have cash-flow problems.”

Smith said, “I think you’re just as healthy as you’ve ever been,” and improved compared to 2017.

He said his office received calls from concerned residents, not town officials, about misappropriation of funds and policies and procedures going ignored.

“We actually spent some time looking at some of those matters, and we just didn’t see it,” Smith said. “We were so concerned in January and February when these phone calls were coming in we actually delayed the issuance of your product until we had a chance to do some due diligence.”

Board Chairman Chris Brennick asked for Smith’s assessment of town debt.

“Statutorily, you’re capped on what you can have for debt anyway,” Smith said. “You’re nowhere close to that.

“You’ve got a lot going on in this town and I think the expectation is that there is only so much money you have of your own to be able to do things. I always tell people, ‘Long-term projects refund long-term money.'”

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