Budget concerns - Auditor expressed concern before news arrived of new €4m cut

Declan Magee

Reporter:

Declan Magee

The Local Government Auditor has expressed concern about the financial standing of Donegal County Council without taking into consideration a €4 million cut to the council’s funding from government.

The Local Government Auditor has expressed concern about the financial standing of Donegal County Council without taking into consideration a €4 million cut to the council’s funding from government.

The auditor was commenting in a report on the council’s Annual Financial Statement for 2011, which was presented to councillors at yesterday’s July meeting of the council.

The audit was presented before councillors debated the 13 per cent cut to the council’s allocation from the Local Government Fund, which is based on number of people in the county who have paid the household charge. The 13 per cent cut is based on a payment rate of 47 per cent.

The Local Government Auditor, Raymond Lavin, said in a commentary on the financial statement that he was concerned about a debt of €12.3 million, an increase of long-term loans to €156m from 2010, and €1.3m of costs on loans to fund unfunded capital projects.

His comments were made at the end of May, while the council was not informed of the cut to its funding until July 18th.

Read more in today’s Donegal Democrat/Donegal People’s Press.