Not only is a good accounting system necessary to comply with state law, but it also is imperative for creating credibility with voters, taxpayers and government officials.

A uniform, double entry, encumbrance, budgetary accounting system should be the goal of each local government. With today’s affordable computers, the accounting system should be maintained on a current basis with monthly reporting provided to each member of the legislative body and department heads. Reports should be reviewed by various officials monthly since they serve as a deterrent to poor record keeping, dishonest acts, and inaccurate information.

County governments should encumber purchase orders and contracts against the budget upon the issuing of such documents. By posting purchase orders to the accounting system, a person could determine the budget balance at any time. This information becomes useful when one wants to charge new obligations upon the account.