Annual Comprehensive Financial Report (“ACFR”) Delivered to the People of Nassau County, the County Legislature and County Administration
The Nassau County Comptroller’s Office recently released the County’s Annual Comprehensive Financial Report (ACFR) for the fiscal year ended on December 31, 2021. This report, the first annual report issued under the administration of Comptroller Elaine Phillips , was issued in accordance with the Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA)’s requirements and is presented in accordance with Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) for governments, as promulgated by the Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB).
The County’s fiscal year 2021 ended with a surplus of $480 million in the Governmental Funds. This net increase is primarily attributed to higher sales tax revenues and savings related to lower debt service.
In anticipation of better than projected sales tax revenue in 2021, the Nassau County Legislature unanimously approved the creation of an Excess Sales Tax Fund proposed by Presiding Officer Legislator Richard J. Nicolello in December 2020. The fund was designed to ensure the additional revenue was allocated responsibly to pay down liabilities and improve the County’s financial stability. At the end of 2021, the fund had a balance of $362 million, which was subsequently allocated as follows: $208 million for tax certiorari payments, $84 million for general litigation, $50 million for contractually required longevity payments, and $20 million for Police District litigation.
The ACFR details this and more in its thorough description of the County’s financial position and the results of the County’s operations as measured by the financial activity of its various funds. It includes extensive detail that will provide the reader with an understanding of the County’s financial affairs. The independent accounting firm of Mayer Hoffman McCann CPAs performed the financial audit and issued an unmodified (“clean”) opinion on Nassau County’s financial statements for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2021.
In addition, today the Comptroller’s Office released the Popular Annual Financial Report (PAFR), which provides a summary of the ACFR. The PAFR provides a “user-friendly” review of the County’s finances, operations, and economy, to inform taxpayers and residents of the financial condition of the County and how its resources are being used to serve the constituents.
Nassau County remains in a control period under the Nassau County Interim Finance Authority (NIFA), which was created by New York State in 2000, administered by State-appointed directors, in response to the County’s financial distress in the 1990s. In the past few years, despite the economic stress created by the COVID-19 pandemic, the County’s finances have improved dramatically, to the extent that the County no longer meets the conditions that would warrant a control period. For additional details about NIFA’s authority and the Control Period Calculation, see the Oversight Authority section on page 7 of the Annual Comprehensive Financial Report, Control Period Calculation and Exhibits E-1 and E-2, accessible online at https://www.nassaucountyny.gov/4517/Financial-Reports.