FSMSSA Board of Trustees meets for 2nd regular meeting
The FSMSSA Board of Trustees held 2nd Regular Meeting in Chuuk on May 22-23, 2019. Every of these board meetings are held quarterly in and around the four states, as there may be a need to follow on pending appeal cases. With such matter, every quarter a Board meeting is called and inclusive of a special meeting when necessary. In attendance to this meeting were Chairman Harris, Vice-Chairman Tafileluw, members Sana, Nena, Falcam, Administrator Narruhn as Ex-Officio member, Deputy Administrator Ilai and FSMSSA Internal Auditor Win Thomas.
The Board were updated on FSMSSA division reports, mainly Financial and Tax Reports. The financial report specifies its net assets standing at $53.2 million as of March 31, 2019. Of this amount $48.6 million is accounted for the investment market value. The remaining $4.6 million represents cash, accounts receivables, travel advances, fixed assets and other assets. Liabilities of $148,031 include accounts payable to vendors, payroll liabilities for unremitted taxes, and payable to beneficiaries. Revenue grew by 5.7% to $5.0 million compared to $4.70 million in the same period last year. The increase is attributed mainly to the timing of Government bi-weekly payment in particular the Pohnpei State and Yap State which paid most of their 4th quarter 2018 taxes due January 2019. Benefits grew by 1.7% to $5.5 million compared to %5.4 million in the same period last year. The increase benefit is attributable to new claims and from retirees’ eligibility back to 100% of benefits. Administrative expenses amounted to $264,556 which represents 20% of the approved budget of $1.31 million. In March 2019, $1.0 million has been withdrawn from the investment portfolio to supplement benefit payments. Cash flow shows the actual sources and uses of cash. Collections were not enough to pay benefits and administrative expense, hence a cash deficit of $764,494. The cash deficit was funded by withdrawal of $1.0 million from investment trust fund.
Tax collection remains a challenge the program tackled with every day following its regulations on tax collection. As of 1st quarter 2019, FSMSSA’s total tax receivables was $5.2 million, which is 4% lower than the same period of last year. The major cause of this decrease has to do with lump sum payment of $254,228.83 to some companies in CY2018. The program’s tax collections struggles with out of the overall delinquent employers, $3.3 million are either closed or inactive employers. About 64% of the total delinquent tax goes to these doubtful accounts and $1.9 million goes to businesses that are still operating and are currently able to pay off or make allotments to their delinquent balance. Still partial collections had been made up to 6% as of 1st quarter 2019 and FSMSSA Tax Division continues to push for more effort in collecting from refereed accounts.
FSMSSA Board of Trustees also had taken care of old or unfinished businesses along with new businesses and had received knowledge of recent communications and incidental report from Administrator Narruhn, inclusive of Social Security Amendments, results of public hearings and pending matters needed of Boards’ attention.
Finally, pending appeal cases were deferred to its special meeting in Kosrae, June 2019.