The City of Chillicothe has restored its financial health after spending six years in a state of fiscal caution, Auditor of State Dave Yost announced Thursday.
The Ross County city of 21,901 people received the fiscal distress status on Oct. 23, 2012, because of deficit fund balances, along with a failure to perform basic bank reconciliations.
“The citizens and leaders of Chillicothe deserve credit for reversing the city’s financial downslide,” Auditor Yost said. “Today their hard work is rewarded with a fresh start.”
Deficits in the city’s Police Pension and Fire Pension special revenue funds totaled $157,368 and $193,130, respectively, as of Dec. 31, 2011.
The city also had not reconciled its account journals and ledgers with the bank since May 2012, and a review of the city’s 2011 audited financial statements showed no evidence that the city performed year-end or periodic bank reconciliations throughout 2011.
But a recent review of Chillicothe’s 2017 audited financial statements shows the city has eliminated all fund deficits. Additionally, the city is up to date on its bank reconciliations, which are now performed on a monthly basis.
Auditor Yost worked with the General Assembly in 2011 to add the fiscal caution designation to Ohio’s fiscal distress system. He argued that cities, counties, villages and townships should not be faced with sudden declarations of fiscal watch and fiscal emergency. Under fiscal caution, the subdivision is given earlier notice of financial concerns and an opportunity to make adjustments to avoid further difficulty.
A full copy of the fiscal caution termination is available online.