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News Release


Independent Reviewers Applaud Office’s Efforts to Educate Public About Tax Dollars

WEST PALM BEACH, FL (November 12, 2009) –  It’s like the Academy Awards of government finance. The Palm Beach County Clerk & Comptroller’s office has received two top awards for financial reporting from the Government Finance Officers Association, or GFOA. For the third straight year since its inception, the Clerk’s easy-to-read citizen’s report, Checks & Balances: Your Guide to County Finances, has received the GFOA’s “Outstanding Achievement in Popular Annual Financial Reporting.” Its sister publication, the Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, or CAFR, was also recognized for excellence by the GFOA.  For an impressive 20th year in a row, the CAFR for Fiscal Year 2008 has earned the “Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting.”

The annual Checks & Balances guide for FY2008 contains user-friendly information about how Palm Beach County tax dollars are managed, the impact of a down economy on government revenue, and the effects of tax reform. The condensed and simplified information is drawn mostly from the office’s more detailed CAFR. Both reports are produced at the end of each fiscal year and are available, along with other financial information, here on the Clerk’s Web site.

“With these unprecedented financial times, it is more important than ever that our elected leaders make fiscally responsible decisions while using our tax dollars,” said Clerk Sharon Bock. “It’s equally as important for the public to understand how their tax dollars are managed and spent. Our financial publications help them do that.” Look for the FY2009 edition of Checks & Balances and the CAFR this spring.

The GFOA is a nonprofit professional association which offers benchmarking and independent analysis of public accounting practices and financial reporting.  As the elected, independent Chief Financial Officer of the County, the Clerk & Comptroller’s office provides a check and balance as the accountant, treasurer and auditor—handling finances, investments and County financial reporting.

The Florida Constitution established the independent office of the Clerk & Comptroller as a public trustee, responsible for safeguarding public records and public funds. Clerk Sharon Bock is directly elected by and accountable to Palm Beach County residents. In addition to the roles of Clerk of the Circuit Court, County Recorder and Clerk of the Board of County Commissioners, the Clerk & Comptroller is the Chief Financial Officer, Treasurer and Auditor for Palm Beach County.

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