LOS ANGELES — Hawaii officials are so proud of their financial comeback that they held a press conference on Monday to release the state's comprehensive annual financial report.
It wasn't just the $844 million surplus that gave the state reason to be jubilant about releasing its CAFR for fiscal 2013 on Jan. 27.
The Aloha state gained national notoriety in 2009 for releasing its CAFR 400 days late.
"Our improving trajectory is a reflection of positive trends in our local economy and responsible management of fiscal affairs, which now includes recognized improvements in meeting our obligations for timely reporting," Gov. Neil Abercrombie said in a statement Feb. 3.
For each of the last three years, the CAFR has been delivered in a more timely manner, compared to the state's delivery prior, said Comptroller Dean Seki.
State officials already had made a comeback on the tardiness issue, however. They received a certificate for excellence in financial reporting from the Government Finance Officers Association for the state's 2012 CAFR.
The report shows the state's net position (assets less liabilities) for primary governmental activities increased for the first time since 2006, to $4.8 billion from $4.5 billion.
"The report measures the state's net worth and overall fiscal health, which clearly shows strong positive fiscal growth over fiscal year 2012," Abercrombie said.
The administration's six-year financial plan projects continued surpluses ranging from 5% to 13% of the total general fund, ending with a $1.08 billion carryover balance in 2019.
As of June 30, 2013, the state had bond debt totaling $7.3 billion.
"Investors and credit agencies expect year-end financial reports be available as soon as possible after the closing of the fiscal years so that the information is not outdated," said Kalbert Young, the state's finance director. "We believe the state can continue to improve delivery of future reports."
Abercrombie is running for reelection in November.