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Course Title
Local Government Finance


This course is a basic overview of local government finance in North Carolina. It is not a debit and credit accounting course nor does it assume you have formal accounting education or experience. You will learn the basic job functions that are typically housed in the finance department, with attention to those found in smaller governments. This course will also link those functions to the requirements for all local governments found in the NC General Statutes, primarily the Local Government and Fiscal Control Act (G. S. 159 Article 3).


At the completion of this course the student will have:

  1. Identified the key components of the Local Government Budget and Fiscal Control Act and the impact of those component on your day-to-day work.
  2. Discussed the importance of adhering to properly adopted local government budget that is legally binding.
  3. Discussed the importance of internal controls that are integrated into daily workflow to help maintain the integrity of the accounting records and protect staff.
  4. Identified best practices for major areas of workflow and discussed how you might implement those in your day-to-day work.
  5. Identified the multiple sources of authoritative information available to you.


  1. Introduction to local government finance
  2. Overview of structure of local government
  3. Overview of governmental accounting and reporting
  4. Annual audit- from the governments perspective
  5. Practical review of role of finance officer
  6. Chart of accounts and file structure
  7. Budget development, adoption and amendment process
  8. Cash and investment basics/ Receipts and disbursements
  9. Basic purchasing and contracting
  10. Utility financial management
  11. Capital assets - overview
  12.  Issuing debt - overview 
  13. Basic system management 
  14. Utilizing what you have learned



Method of Instruction

Classroom Lecture

Online Blackboard Component

Homework Assignments


Successful completion will be measured by attendance and completion of 80% of the course assignments. Attendance requirement is also 80%.