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Azavar Government Solutions Delivers $1 million+ Revenue Enhancement to the Village of Woodridge

Incorporated in 1959 with just 109 homes and fewer than 500 residents, the Village of Woodridge has grown to become an important regional center for commerce, technology, and food production, with a population of over 33,000. In 2007, Woodridge was listed in Money Magazine's Best 100 Places to Live.

Today, Woodridge enjoys a reputation as a strong, resilient community that takes charge of its future by placing the highest priority on fiscal responsibility, accountability, and good governance. From 1981 until his retirement in 2013, the municipality was led by Mayor William F. Murphy, who is also a past President of the Illinois Municipal League and the DuPage Mayors and Managers Conference.

In his 2011 State of the Village Address, Mayor Murphy drew attention to the Village's AAA credit rating from Fitch Ratings and AA1 rating from Moody's Investors Service – testament to Woodridge's sound financial management and determination to enhance its municipal revenues as it continues to develop as a vibrant commercial and residential community.

Woodridge Embarks on a Long-Standing Relationship With Azavar Government Solutions

In common with many other communities in Illinois, Woodridge had been aware that revenue vulnerabilities were making its financial planning difficult. In 2004, it began experiencing unsatisfactory standards of compliance, service, and communication from some of its major utility providers. The Village wanted to monitor their relationships with those companies and, in particular, ensure that taxes were collected accurately and equitably across the board.

"The Village of Woodridge has seen massive growth since its beginnings as a bedroom community over 50 years ago. We long suspected that the utility provider was not keeping up with changes to our corporate boundaries."

Mayor William F. Murphy, Village of Woodridge

Woodridge came to Azavar Government Solutions because of our high level of professionalism, our technological expertise, and our strength in working successfully with local governments to enhance their revenues – down to the last penny. Azavar Government Solutions embarked on a municipal audit program, supporting the efforts of Village staff to improve accountability of utility companies in their use of its municipal rights of way.

"This was the start of a long-standing relationship with Azavar Government Solutions – one that has made a significant difference to our financial health, helping Woodridge to maintain its services without having to impose higher taxes on our residents."

Mayor William F. Murphy, Village of Woodridge

 Woodridge Collects Missed Electric Utility Tax Revenues

Azavar Government Solutions professionals conducted a municipal revenue audit of Woodridge's utility taxes, including those remitted by Exelon / Commonwealth Edison. Using proprietary software technology to audit premises in Woodridge's address database, Azavar was able to identify errors within the utility provider's database that had not been apparent to either Village officials or the utility franchisee – some going back many decades – and returned an increase of approximately $50,000 per year, independent of gains occurring naturally due to factors such as weather, economic growth, or new building development.

Azavar Government Solutions Recovers Lost Cable and Natural Gas Tax Income

Azavar Government Solutions staff went on to launch a cable franchise fee and contract compliance audit for the Village of Woodridge. The audit included compliance analysis of their current franchise agreements with cable and natural gas companies serving the community.

Using cutting-edge geographic information systems and our proprietary data mining technology, we conducted a comprehensive analysis of addresses in Woodridge receiving cable service and returned deficient income amounting to $40,000. Our team then went on to audit tax receipts and addresses from Woodridge's natural gas provider, and our findings from this analysis enhance Village income by $275,000 annually, according to recent estimates.

Working with Woodridge and utility officials to expedite these audit processes, Azavar Government Solutions staff have not only collected past due monies but also ensured that the Village will continue to gain advantage from these corrected errors in its future income. Woodridge also benefits from the expertise of our network of specialist consultants, freeing their staff to focus on delivering the high level of services that Woodridge residents have come to expect.

"The benefits didn't just stop with additional revenues. The Village also experienced increased compliance and improved cooperation from the utility provider: our residents receive more responsive support when they experience a service interruption, and Village staff find it easier to work with the utility provider when extending or improving infrastructure."

Mayor William F. Murphy, Village of Woodridge

 Azavar Helps Woodridge Move Forward Towards a Strong Future

Thanks to Azavar's tireless efforts to track down every penny of missing tax revenue due to the Village, Woodridge is able to set its own course towards a healthy future based on prudent financial management. Our findings have added more than $1 million to their municipal rolls, helping Woodridge to achieve excellent rankings for the quality of their services while collecting fewer taxes than many other communities in their area.

"I wholeheartedly recommend that every community seeking to protect and enhance its revenue sources engage Azavar Government Solutions to conduct a municipal audit program."

Mayor William F. Murphy, Village of Woodridge

On Enhancing Future As Well As Past Revenues

“Our community will continue to benefit in the years to come from the ongoing revenues that were uncovered by Azavar Government Solutions' investigation.” 
— John Thorson, City of Rock Island
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