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City 'finds' $134,000 in missed payments

— City officials have discovered that a telecommunications company wasn't billed for fees owed the city for more than seven years.

City officials told the commission Tuesday that Alltel Communications has been subject to right-of-way fees for years, and has paid most of them.

But, according to Finance Director Kris Newton, her predecessor stopped collecting them from the company in 2005 for an unknown reason.

(City Treasury Manager) Ava's (O'Neal) is reviewing and updating the revenue manual so that she can make sure we're not missing anyone else. At some point back in 2005 the treasury manager stopped billing. It just got lost and no one remembered," Newton said.

Newton became finance director in 2007.

Alltel's lines, which were subsequently sold to Verizon who is now in talks with Windstream, are buried or posted in the city right-of-way, which means they pay about a dollar per linear foot to the city each year.

O'Neal noticed, after reviewing records going back to 2005, that they hadn't paid.

"I received a call from Windstream in reference to checking on the payment that needed to be made on that account, so I had to do some background information on the payment," O'Neal said. "When I started researching, based on the old agreement, I saw the last payment we received was in 2004."

Finance officials did the math and realized that Alltel still owed more than $134,000 to the city.

Comments

hayward2 2 years, 3 months ago

good luck getting that back...only in "Agony" Ga.!!!

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KaosinAlbany 2 years, 3 months ago

The City has let too many slide in the past so it's time to tighten up because the taxpayers are tired of footing the bill and having nothing to show for it.

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jglass 2 years, 3 months ago

WOW!!! I just wonder how many others are not paying or are not paying their fair share. Geez!!!

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VietVet1 2 years, 3 months ago

"Finance Director Kris Newton, her predecessor" - but yet you didn't know till 5 years later when Windstream brought it up? Do people have qualifications to run departments or what?

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dingleberry 2 years, 3 months ago

So, if Alltel owed $134K before it sold to Verizon in an unspecified year, does Verizon owe anything or have they been paying all along? If Verizon started paying as soon as it took over, shouldn't that have caused someone to say "Gee, what was Alltel doing before Verizon?". Thank goodness for Windstream doing our work for us.

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whattheheck 2 years, 3 months ago

If we can get a buck a foot for buried lines. we need to find more companies to bury them. Of course all that depends on someone actually collecting the buck rather than passing it!

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Outtahere 2 years, 3 months ago

This is exactly what I have been talking about - City employees who are either incompentent or in a posistion they are not qualified for. This statement stuck out to me the most: At some point back in 2005 the treasury manager stopped billing. It just got lost and no one remembered," Newton said.

Okay, first of all - IT IS YOUR JOB TO REMEMBER!!!!! AS A DIRECTOR, IT TOOK YOU YEARS TO CATCH A MISTAKE ON THE TREASURY??? WHAT HAVE YOU BEEN DOING WITH YOUR TIME???

This article, I'm assuming, is suppose to be positive. "Oh, here's some money to help the deficit." I look at this as EXTREMELY NEGATIVE!!! This shows that City employees are NOT doing their jobs competently and thoroughly. And what is so shameful, is that this a DIRECTOR admitting that they just couldn't remember! REALLY?? If I told my boss I didn't follow up on an account because I "just couldn't remember", I probably wouldn't have a job anymore!!

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J.D._Sumner 2 years, 3 months ago

The story isn't written to be positive or negative, it's just written to let you taxpayers know what's going on with your government.

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Outtahere 2 years, 3 months ago

J.D., That wasn't directed toward you, even though it might have sounded like it. Very happy that you keep us informed! (Pretty cool that you responded to my post!!)

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Cartman 2 years, 3 months ago

You can't have unqualified friends and relatives handling this much money. I once heard that there is not one CPA on the City of Albany's payroll. Does anyone know if this is true?

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KaosinAlbany 2 years, 3 months ago

That's a good question and I would also like to know the answer to it.

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Justice4Moma 2 years, 3 months ago

And what about the Hilton Inn,now i saw where if they default,then Albany will have to make up 5.5 million.Something is bad wrong with the people running this City.They keep buying,and we keep paying.We need a new set of Officals all the way around.And how about some honest ones,that dont go in to make friends,but to do a job for ALL Taxpayers. You can tell by all the others that Owe The City,that the City will just let taxpayers eat it.It s time for them to eat what they feed us.

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