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Audit profiles Camacho Administration's expenditures

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by Sabrina Salas Matanane

Guam - As lawmakers head into the balancing act in the coming weeks, an audit released today by the Guam Office of Public Accountability provides them some insight into how the previous administration was managing the people's money. GovGuam continues to spend more than what it takes in - that's the short version.

The audit examines General Fund expenditures, collections and revenues from fiscal year 2010. Some of the notable findings include GovGuam as a whole overspending by $71 million, and here's the humdinger: the over-expenditures were funded by delaying tax refund payments.

Other findings to point out: you may have heard a lot about - the Make Work Pay Tax Credit, according to the audit $67 million was advanced to GovGuam by the U.S. Treasury. The money is supposed to provide tax relief: up to $400 per eligible working individuals and $800 for married taxpayers filing jointly in tax years 2009 and 2010. Of that, $67 million advanced to GovGuam for the tax credit program. It spent $62 million to pay for General Fund daily operations and pay some tax refunds.

According to the OPA, $11.7 million must be returned to the Treasury by January 2013 or be offset. This specific reimbursement is for the un-used balance to pay the credits for tax year 2009.

Other notables include the Department of Administration transferring or borrowing some 50-million dollars from various accounts and moving them to the General Fund for daily government operations in FY2010. Now, it turns out the General Fund won't be able to pay back a majority of those accounts.

As for the overall picture, the OPA reports the government's cumulative deficit totals $336 million. If you're looking for a bright spot: tax collections increased slightly between FY2009 and 2010 by $3.5 million dollars.

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