In an effort to improve transparency with the use of taxpayers’ money, Pismo Beach officials last week asked the Pismo Beach Chamber of Commerce to provide the city its audited 2009 financial statements.
The city provides funding to about 20 nonprofit groups, including the chamber, Five Cities Meals on Wheels, the American Red Cross, Central Coast Spay Shuttle and several programs provided through the Community Action Partnership of San Luis Obispo County.
The city spends about $170,000 a year on these groups, according to Administrative Services Director George Edes — about 1 percent of city expenses.
The chamber — which promotes the interests of local business and tourism to Pismo Beach — receives about two-thirds of the city money that’s given to nonprofit groups. This fiscal year, it will receive $116,504.
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The city three years ago started asking organizations that sought contributions and support from the city to provide copies of audited financial statements for the most recent fiscal year.
Edes said that two of the 21 organizations receiving money from the city did not provide financial statements during a mid-cycle review of the city’s budget in August, including the county’s General Services Agency for airport services and the county’s Homeless Services Oversight Council.
The chamber was not on the budget review agenda, and it’s unknown whether chamber officials were asked to submit a financial statement, Edes said.
Seven organizations provided audited statements; 10 others provided statements that were not audited. Edes was not sure whether two other organizations had provided statements.
The City Council voted 4-0 on Oct. 5 to request the chamber provide the financial statements by Nov. 5.