41-1279.07. Uniform expenditure reporting system; reports by counties, community college districts, cities and towns; certification and attestation; assistance by auditor general; attorney general investigation; violation; classification

A. The auditor general shall prescribe a uniform expenditure reporting system for all political subdivisions subject to the constitutional expenditure limitations prescribed by article IX, sections 20 and 21, Constitution of Arizona. The system shall include:

1. For counties:

(a) An annual expenditure limitation report that includes at least the following information:

(i) The expenditure limitation established for the reporting fiscal year by the economic estimates commission.

(ii) Total expenditures, by fund, for the reporting fiscal year.

(iii) Total exclusions from local revenues, as defined by article IX, section 20, Constitution of Arizona, by fund, for the reporting fiscal year.

(iv) Total amounts, by fund, of expenditures subject to the expenditure limitation for the reporting fiscal year.

(b) Annual financial statements prepared in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles.

(c) A reconciliation of the total expenditures reported within the financial statements to the total expenditures stated within the expenditure limitation report.

2. For community college districts:

(a) An annual budgeted expenditure limitation report that includes at least the following information:

(i) The expenditure limitation established for the reporting fiscal year by the economic estimates commission.

(ii) Total budgeted expenditures, by fund, for the reporting fiscal year.

(iii) Total exclusions from local revenues, as defined by article IX, section 21, Constitution of Arizona, by fund, for the reporting fiscal year.

(iv) Total amounts, by fund, of budgeted expenditures subject to the expenditure limitation for the reporting fiscal year.

(b) Annual financial statements prepared in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles.

(c) A reconciliation of the total expenditures reported within the financial statements to the total expenditures reported within the expenditure limitation report.

3. For cities and towns:

(a) An annual expenditure limitation report that includes at least the following information:

(i) The expenditure limitation established for the reporting fiscal year by the economic estimates commission and, if applicable, the voter approved alternative expenditure limitation.

(ii) Total expenditures, by fund, for the reporting fiscal year.

(iii) Total exclusions from local revenues, as defined by article IX, section 20, Constitution of Arizona, by fund, for the reporting fiscal year or, if applicable, the total exclusions from the voter approved alternative expenditure limitation.

(iv) Total amounts, by fund, of expenditures subject to the expenditure limitation for the reporting fiscal year.

(b) Financial statements prepared in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles.

(c) A reconciliation of the total expenditures reported within the financial statements to the total expenditures reported within the expenditure limitation report.

B. The auditor general shall provide detailed instructions for completion and submission of the reports described in subsection A of this section. The auditor general shall prescribe definitions for terms used in and the form of the reports described in subsection A of this section. The reports described in subsection A of this section are required of counties and community college districts beginning with fiscal year 1981-1982. The reports described in subsection A of this section are required of cities and towns beginning with the fiscal year the political subdivision is subject to the expenditure limitation. The annual reporting requirements also apply to political subdivisions subject to an alternative expenditure limitation enacted pursuant to article IX, section 20, subsection (9), Constitution of Arizona.

C. The reports described in subsection A of this section must be filed with the auditor general within nine months after the close of each fiscal year. 

D. The auditor general or a certified public accountant performing the annual audit required pursuant to sections 41-1279.21 and 9-481 shall attest to the expenditure limitation reports and financial statements for counties, community college districts and cities. The certified public accountant performing the annual or biennial audit required pursuant to section 9-481 shall attest to the expenditure limitation reports and financial statements for towns.

E. The governing body of each political subdivision shall provide to the auditor general by July 31 each year the name of the chief fiscal officer designated by the governing body of the political subdivision to officially submit the current fiscal year's expenditure limitation report on behalf of the governing body. The governing body of the political subdivision shall notify the auditor general of any changes of individuals designated to file the required reports. The designated chief fiscal officer shall certify to the accuracy of the annual expenditure limitation report.

F. The auditor general shall prescribe forms for the uniform reporting system and may provide assistance to individuals, certified public accountants or public accountants responsible for attesting to the expenditure limitation reports and financial statements.

G. Each political subdivision, subject to the expenditure limitations prescribed by article IX, sections 20 and 21, Constitution of Arizona, shall comply with the uniform expenditure reporting system, instructions and forms prescribed by the auditor general. The auditor general may notify the committee and the attorney general if any political subdivision does not comply with the uniform expenditure reporting system, instructions or forms prescribed by the auditor general. The attorney general may file a petition for special action in any court of competent jurisdiction to compel any political subdivision to comply with this section. The attorney general may apply for injunctive relief in any court of competent jurisdiction to enjoin any political subdivision from violating this section. Injunctive and special action proceedings are in addition to all other penalties and other remedies prescribed by law.

H. A chief fiscal officer, designated pursuant to subsection E of this section, who subsequent to July 1, 1983 refuses to file the reports required by this section within the prescribed time periods or who intentionally files erroneous reports is guilty of a class 1 misdemeanor.  A city or town exceeding the expenditure limitation prescribed or authorized pursuant to article IX, section 20, Constitution of Arizona, for any fiscal year, without authorization pursuant to such section, shall have the amount specified in subsection I of this section of its allocations of the state income tax, distributed pursuant to section 43-206, withheld and redistributed to other cities and towns in the same manner as determined pursuant to that section, except that the population of the city or town exceeding the expenditure limitation shall not be included in the computation, and the city or town exceeding the expenditure limitation shall not be entitled to share in the redistribution.  A community college district exceeding the expenditure limitation prescribed pursuant to article IX, section 21, Constitution of Arizona, for any fiscal year, without authorization pursuant to such section or section 15-1471, shall have the amount specified in subsection I of this section of its allocations of state aid, distributed pursuant to section 15-1466, withheld.

I. The auditor general shall hold a hearing to determine if any political subdivision has exceeded the expenditure limitations prescribed pursuant to article IX, sections 20 and 21, Constitution of Arizona. If a county has exceeded the expenditure limitations prescribed pursuant to article IX, section 20, Constitution of Arizona, without authorization pursuant to that section, the auditor general shall notify the board of supervisors of the county to reduce the allowable levy of primary property taxes of the county pursuant to section 42-17051, subsection C. If any political subdivision other than a county has exceeded the expenditure limitations prescribed pursuant to article IX, sections 20 and 21, Constitution of Arizona, without authorization, the auditor general shall notify the state treasurer to withhold a portion of the political subdivision's allocations of the revenues described in subsection H of this section for the fiscal year subsequent to the auditor general's hearing as follows:

1. If the excess expenditures are less than five percent of the limitation, an amount equal to the excess expenditures.

2. If the excess expenditures are equal to or greater than five percent but less than ten percent of the limitation, or are less than five percent of the limitation but it is at least the second consecutive instance of excess expenditures, an amount equal to triple the excess expenditures.

3. If the excess expenditures are equal to or greater than ten percent of the limitation, an amount equal to five times the excess expenditures or one-third of the allocation of the revenues described in subsection H of this section, whichever is less.

J. A county, city or town is not deemed to have exceeded the expenditure limitation if the county, city or town makes expenditures for capital improvements from utility revenues pursuant to title 9, chapter 5, article 3 or from excise taxes levied by the county, city or town for a specific purpose and the county, city or town repays the expenditure from the proceeds of bonds or other lawful long-term obligations before the hearing required by subsection I of this section.