After a loss last year of almost $41,000, the Cadiz-Trigg County Tourist and Convention Commission has bounced back in 2021, experiencing a net income of around $131,000 as of the end of June.
“This was good,” noted Debbie Fuller, a partner with Calhoun and Co., the certified public accounting firm that conducted the audit for the local tourism agency.
Fuller spoke to the commission during its regular meeting.
She noted that slight increases in revenue and a decrease in some expenses contributed to the improvements. She said, for example, that television advertising was down in 2021 as was advertising out of town in places such as Paducah and Evansville, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Additionally, events were down quite a bit, and that was a big reason expenses were down, according to Fuller. She also noted that the abatement to Harper House, a local restaurant, was down.
The commission had total revenues of $637,000 as of June 30, with $506,000 incurred in expenses.
Fuller said 73% of that revenue came from the restaurant tax, with another 25% from transient room taxes. Around 1% was due to matching funds, interest income and receipts.
The majority of the commission’s expenses, 36%, was due to advertising, while another 22% represented what the agency pays to the Trigg County Parks and Recreation Department. Salary and benefits were 21% of expenses, 5% went to the Harper House tax abatement and 3% to maintenance.
The remaining 13% fell into different areas, according to Fuller.
She said her firm found that the commission’s financial statements were presented fairly.
“That’s what you want so that’s a clean opinion on the financial statements,” Fuller noted.
She said Calhoun and Co. did have one internal control finding, with some of the invoices in cash disbursements not signed off as being approved; if it isn’t signed, then it can’t be assumed that the invoice was approved, Fuller explained. She noted that, in the future, a board member will approve the invoices and sign the checks in order to address the need for a segregation of duties.
Fuller said she would also like for a board member to review the commission’s bank statements, initial and date the invoices, noting that gives proof that the board member has seen the invoices.
Yet another suggestion from the auditing firm is for the commission to adopt a capitalization policy, meaning that the agency will keep up with its purchases on a balance sheet.
Commission Executive Director Bill Stevens said he was interested in the policy which, among other things, could help the agency keep abreast of its plans and expenses related to the possible purchase of a vehicle.
Fuller also suggested that the commission include its Christmas bonuses on payroll.
“That’s how that should be handled,” she said.
In other business:
- Stevens said the commission is “still averaging pretty good on the mail out information,” with more than 900 pieces of information about the local community sent in October and to date this month.
- The commission approved minutes from its September meeting, along with financial reports for September and October.
- According to the commission’s financial reports, the agency had total liabilities and equity of $443,378.46 as of Sept. 30 and total liabilities and equity of $466,728.14 as of Oct. 31.
- The director noted that upcoming activities in the community include the Mingle and Jingle open house on Saturday, Shop Small Saturday encouraging people to shop local on Nov. 27 and a Fine Arts and Crafts Show from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Dec. 4 at the Lake Barkley State Resort Park convention center.
Additionally, Dec. 4 will feature “Magical Characters on Main Street” from 4 to 5 p.m., with youth invited to meet the likes of Olaf from “Frozen” or various Disney princesses. The annual “Festival of Trees” will take place at the Janice Mason Art Museum, and the Cadiz Christmas Parade is at 6 p.m.
Stevens said the commission gave organizers a thousand Halloween eggs to hand out during the community’s recent Halloween Safe Night.
Reach Tonya S. Grace at 270-887-3240 or firstname.lastname@example.org.