The trustee acts as the general banker for the county, serving three primary functions. First, the trustee sends out statements for property taxes, one of the county’s most important revenue sources, and then collects these taxes and issues receipts. Second, the trustee receives and disburses county funds, keeping accurate records for each transaction. It is recommended that all county funds received by the trustee’s office be deposited daily; however, state law requires all funds to be deposited within three days. Revenues are identified by use of a uniform chart of accounts authorized by the comptroller’s office and administered by the county audit division. Disbursements of county funds are made on official county warrants which are recorded in a warrant register book, or through a checking system if the county has elected to convert from a warrant system.

The trustee files monthly and annual financial reports. For performing these duties, the trustee receives commissions, which are generally outlined in Tennessee Code Annotated ยง 8_11_110. A third important function of the county trustee is managing the cash flow of the county and, in some cases, investing idle cash funds. The trustee should work with the county finance committee to ensure that investments are made according to state law and produce the maximum yield of earnings with the highest degree of safety.

Other Matters. Since office management is an important responsibility, trustees should have knowledge of personnel procedures as well as relevant state and federal laws. Also, the trustee should have a basic understanding of potential liability, including both personal and county, and of the Tennessee Governmental Tort Liability Act. All county officials should be familiar with the conflict of interest and disclosure laws applicable to their offices.