Annual Financial Report - 2009
This Comprehensive Annual Financial Report is issued for the City of Gaithersburg, Maryland, for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2009. Its purpose is to provide financial information of importance to the decision-making process of the Mayor and City Council, the citizens of Gaithersburg, oversight bodies, and creditors. This report is also a vehicle for City officials to gauge the extent to which sound financial management and reporting practices are being applied to protect the public interest.
A high priority of the City is to maintain a sound financial condition. We believe that our financial results for the year ending June 30, 2009 reflect our commitment to this objective:
- The City continues to provide facilities and services to its citizens while preserving a pay-as-you-go philosophy and maintaining the same property tax rate since 1964.
- Even in these challenging economic times, the City has maintained reserves adequate to support unexpected emergencies, ensuring that we can continue to provide the highest quality of services to our constituency.
During Fiscal Year 2009, the City made progress in the eleven goal areas that make up our Strategic Plan. These are just a few highlights:
- The City’s Personnel Rules and Regulations were completely overhauled. The modifications have led to improved internal organizational efficiencies and consistencies.
- Gaithersburg’s Olde Towne area received designation as an Enterprise Zone, positioning our historic City center as a desirable location for development once the economy rebounds.
- Affordable housing has never been a more critical issue. We are proud that a Moderately Priced Dwelling Unit and Workforce Housing policy is now allowing for affordable units in several new and redeveloped properties. A housing stipend is being used by City employees, encouraging them to live in the community in which they work. And we continue to fund a foreclosure counseling service to help our most vulnerable residents retain their housing.
- The U.S. Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency awarded two Urban Area Security Initiative subgrants to the City of Gaithersburg Police Department totaling $475,400. The grants, which Gaithersburg will administer on behalf of other municipalities involved, provide for the development Continuity of Operations and Emergency Operations Plans for several jurisdictions.
- Through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, Gaithersburg received $578,000 in federal funding from the new Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant program. These funds will be used to conduct energy audits and implement energy efficiency upgrades at major City facilities.
- The City received approximately $2,200,000 in federal funds in FY09, most of which were used for the design and construction of the new Olde Towne Youth Center. Other federal funds were used for the Wells/Robertson House program, and for the installation of a new roof and gutter system on the historic B&O Railroad Station and Community Museum. State funds were awarded to the City to support numerous City initiatives, including a grant to fund façade improvements on properties in and around the Olde Towne Central Business District, and to support the City’s homeless programs, police salaries and equipment, nutrition programs for seniors, and other important human service initiatives.
We are proud to receive regional and national recognition for our efforts.
- The City was awarded its 31st Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting by the Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada (GFOA) for the Comprehensive Annual Financial Report for the fiscal year that ended June 30, 2008.
- A seventh Distinguished Budget Presentation Award from the Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada (GFOA) was received for the fiscal year that ended June 30, 2008.
- BusinessWeek magazine ranked Gaithersburg the number one place in Maryland on its annual list of "Best Places to Raise Your Kids."
- Gaithersburg earned "Banner City/Town" designation from the Maryland Municipal League (MML) for the second year in a row. The program recognizes those communities that educate their residents about the important of municipal government, and that demonstrate a commitment to MML programs and activities through the involvement of their elected and appointed officials.
- Seven members of the Gaithersburg Police Department received Public Safety Awards from the Gaithersburg-Germantown Chamber of Commerce for distinguished service and meritorious conduct.
- The City’s Cable TV staff received two awards from the National Association of Telecommunications Officers and Advisors for programming in FY 2009, one for a presentation made at the State of the City Dinner on community policing and one for a cable TV feature on the City’s participation in a statewide geocache trail.
- Three City employees received APEX Awards for Communication Excellence, two for cable TV features on community policing and Gaithersburg’s participation in Maryland’s Capital for a Day program, and one for speechwriting for the Mayor’s annual State of the City address.
- The Gaithersburg Upcounty Senior Center received a Maryland Recreation and Parks Association Service Award for its continued commitment to healthy lifestyles, and for providing innovative programming to meet the changing needs of mature adults. The Center also received a Physical Fitness Excellence Award from the Maryland State Advisory Council on Physical Fitness.
- A City magazine highlighting environmental initiatives received an ECO Merit Award for Excellence in Environmental Communications.
- Gaithersburg received Tree City USA designation from the National Arbor Day Foundation for the 20th consecutive year.
Because of conservative, prudent fiscal policies that have been in place for years, the City of Gaithersburg is in a position to weather the current economic crisis with a minimum of sacrifice. By ensuring that we focus our efforts on those items identified in our strategic plan, by building consensus within the community through the engagement of all stakeholders, and by making smart, tough decisions now and in the months to come, we are laying the groundwork for sound, municipal governance that continues to meet the needs of its citizenry
Angel L. Jones