OPA: General fund posts surplus but net deficit remains

(PNC file photo)

The Office of Public Accountability has released the Government of Guam’s financial statements for fiscal year 2019, showing a surplus in the general fund but a continued net deficit for GovGuam.

According to OPA, GovGuam’s general fund ended FY 2019 with a surplus of $35.6 million compared to the previous year’s deficit of $10.4 million. The general fund’s net deficit remains but the FY 2019 surplus improved the general fund’s net position from a deficit of $83.4 million to a deficit of $47.8 million.

Historically, over the last ten years, the general fund has been in deficit except for FY 2012 and FY 2013. It reached its lowest mark in FY 2010 at $321.3 million but has steadily been improving over the years.

In FY 2015, it reached a new high of $119 million. According to OPA, the deficit was due to some factors such as debt service costs relating to the closure of the Ordot landfill facility and in support of the Guam Department of Education, unanticipated expenditures, and revenue shortfalls.

Independent auditors Deloitte & Touche, LLP, issued an unmodified “clean” opinion on the GovGuam’s financial statements.

However, OPA said the issuance of the GovGuam audited financial statements due on June 30th has been significantly delayed because of the Guam Housing and Urban Renewal Authority’s lack of timely completion of its audited financial statements.

“Failure to include GHURA in GovGuam’s financial statements may result in an adverse opinion on GovGuam’s financial statements. This in turn impacts the ability of GovGuam to timely report to its stakeholders, including bondholders, [Guam legislators], and the federal government,” OPA stated.