November 1, 2023

Honor commends organization’s excellence in handling and reporting all funding, including the Richland County Penny

(November 1, 2023) Columbia, SC – Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada (GFOA) has awarded the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting to Central Midlands Regional Transit Authority (The COMET) for its Annual Comprehensive Financial Report (ACFR) for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2022. The COMET financial team, which includes Crystal Willis and Amaris Ray-Pope is led by Rosalyn Andrews, Chief Financial Officer. The public transit organization first won the award in its fiscal year of 2018. This is the fifth consecutive year of The COMET earning this award – and the 6th overall-- for demonstrating excellence in handling and reporting all funding, which includes the Richland County Penny.

The Certificate of Achievement is the highest form of recognition in governmental accounting and financial reporting, and its attainment represents a significant accomplishment by a government and its management. It represents a significant achievement by the entity, reflecting the commitment of the governing body and staff to meeting the highest principles of governmental budgeting. In order to receive the budget award, the entity had to satisfy nationally recognized guidelines for effective budget presentation.

There are over 1,600 participants in the Budget Awards Program. The most recent Budget Award recipients, along with their corresponding budget documents, are posted quarterly on GFOA's website. Award recipients have pioneered efforts to improve the quality of budgeting and provide an excellent example for other governments throughout North America.

“We are excited and grateful that our diligence in being good stewards of the Richland Penny and our other funding streams has been recognized with this prestigious honor,” said LeRoy DesChamps, Interim Executive Director/CEO of The COMET. “We take the public trust to heart and make every effort to be meticulous in handling our funding responsibly and with transparency. We’re delighted that our commitment to excellence, fiscal responsibility and transparency at The COMET has been recognized.”

The report was judged by an impartial panel to meet the high standards of the program, which includes demonstrating a constructive "spirit of full disclosure" to clearly communicate its financial story and motivate potential users and user groups to read the report.

Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA) advances excellence in government finance by providing best practices, professional development, resources, and practical research for more than 21,000 members and the communities they serve.