The Auditor General (AG) has given the Kouga Municipality a clean bill of health for the 2016/17 financial year by issuing an unqualified audit report.
The municipality raised R148 million in property rates for the financial year and received a further R144 million in the form of grants and subsidies from national and provincial government.
Income of R337 million was raised through the sale of electricity, water, sanitation and waste removal.
Staff costs showed a marginal decrease of R700 000 when compared to those of the previous financial year with a total cost of R228 million to the municipality.
The purchase of water and electricity cost R220 million, while R51 million was spent on operational costs. This includes items such as legal fees, chemicals, insurance, telephone and postage.
Overall the municipality ended the financial year with R84 million in the bank, up from R78 million in the previous financial year.
The newly elected DA government in Kouga aggressively reduced the contingent liabilities facing the municipality and reduced the amount from R109 million to 49 million.
Outstanding trade creditors dropped from R114 million to R91 million, while debtors showed a marginal drop from R77 million to R73 million.
Performance management was again criticised by the Auditor General, while water losses representing 38,5% of water purchased were identified.
The losses were due to leakages, tampering with meters, incorrect ratios used for bulk meters, faulty meters and illegal connections (theft of water).
“We have implemented a performance management system in the Municipality and will be able to address this finding during the next audit,” says Kouga Mayor Elza Van Lingen.
“Water losses are a serious concern and we budgeted for additional vehicles for our Infrastructure department to equip them to attend to water leaks more efficiently.
“We also spent R 23 million during the financial year on the Kruisfontein and St Francis Bay Waste Water Treatment Plants, with another R 4 million spent upgrading bulk infrastructure in Kruisfontein.
This led to the construction of 391 RDP houses in Kruisfontein.”