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Audit Shows Growth In Binghamton Reserve Fund

Bob Joseph/WNBF News

Binghamton Mayor Matthew Ryan says the city’s fund balances have risen to a “healthy level.”

The mayor today discussed portions of an audit that have been made public. The independent review of the city’s finances indicated the general fund reserve increased from about $219,000 at the end of 2005 to more than $6.1 million six years later.

Speaking on WNBF Radio’s Binghamton Now program, Ryan said his administration has “dramatically turned around city finances.”

The mayor said the improvements occurred despite a national recession and costs to the city as a result of two major floods.

Ryan said a portion of the audit was not ready to be released. He said he expected the remainder of the report to be made public within the next few days.

Moody’s Investors Service downgraded Binghamton’s credit rating last January, blasting the city for “consistently late financial statements.”

Ryan had conceded Binghamton had not provided the information Moody’s sought on time. He said one of the reasons for the delay was the hiring of a new firm to do auditing for the city.

The mayor said he hopes Moody’s will restore Binghamton’s credit rating after a review of the audit information.

Ryan acknowledged that despite progress over the last few years, the city continues to face some big challenges, including its high child poverty rate and its older housing stock. He said more work will be needed to address those and other issues that affect Binghamton’s overall financial health.

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