Politics & Government

Lakewood applauded by state Auditor’s Office for improving financial practices

Six months after listing Lakewood as one of 57 municipalities that have shown signs of declining financial health, the State Auditor’s Office says the city is turning things around.

In a report issued Feb. 3, the auditor’s office held up Lakewood as an example of a city that responded quickly to the warnings.

The original findings issued in August cited Lakewood’s declining or negative fund balance in 2011 and 2012. The auditor also noted the city’s use of money from other funds to balance its general fund in 2011. And the city’s general fund expenditures exceeded revenues in 2012, according to the report.

Some of the changes made by the city since then include establishing a six-year financial forecast; producing quarterly financial reports for City Council review; and maintaining a minimum cash balance equal to two months of operating expenses.