Category Archives: BMS Products

Utilities Are Vulnerable to Cyber Security Breaches, Too!

Data Breach Unsecured Warning Sign ConceptIf you are one of the 56 million people who have suffered a breach to their credit records, credit card number, debit records, tax returns or other types of identity theft, then the idea of a data security breach is not very foreign to you. All sorts of data—not just retailer and tax data—is subject to cyber security hacks and breaches. Vulnerabilities to other lesser-considered systems that store delicate information (social security numbers and payment accounting information) such as utilities are becoming the new victims of data breaches.

In fact, these information breaches are happening all over the US: by a dishonest employee at a water sewer department in Southern California, from the stolen laptop of a utility worker at a North Carolina water department and by a contractor working at a Massachusetts water and sewer commission who lost a company hard drive. Read more >

Posted in Best Practices, BMS Products, BMS Tech Tips, City Clerk Cafe, Cloud Computing, Office Efficiency, Small Cities, Technology, Utility Billing | Comments Off on Utilities Are Vulnerable to Cyber Security Breaches, Too!

Tax Forms and More for Happier Clients

Signed, Sealed, Delivered—Easier, More Convenient and Faster.

F2014-10-03O-Naorms, forms everywhere! There’s 1099’s, W2’s, 1095’s, and utility bills to boot! And now, you can get them all and much more from one reliable, trusted supplier.

Our most recent and successful business partnership is with Rocky Mountain Print Solutions (RMPS). They produce and deliver BMS-formatted forms that integrate perfectly with Black Mountain Software to ensure your form printing is accurate and improves your mailing success.

And, do you make yet another supplier call for printer ink? Now you don’t have to. If your printer ink is running dry from printing all those required forms, consider consolidating your form and printer supply needs with RMPS. Read more >

Posted in Accounting Basics, Best Practices, BMS Partners, BMS Products, Government Accounting Standards, Office Efficiency, School Software, Small Cities, Utility Billing | Comments Off on Tax Forms and More for Happier Clients

City of Lava Hot Springs Switches from DOS to BMS

From D-O-S to B-M-S

We are excited to feature one of our newest clients, Lava Hot Springs, Idaho, in our small town stories this month. This is possibly one of the most unique places we have ever featured.

About Lava Hot Springs, Idaho

Lava Hot Springs, located in Bannock County, has a few things that make it unique. Besides the fact that it has 102-degree water surrounding the 455-acre town, it also claims to be an “odor-free” natural hot spring! Just imagine, soaking in warm, mineral-rich water as you take in the surrounding beauty with a deep, detoxifying breath that smells of…nothing! Read more >

Posted in BMS Products, City Clerk Cafe, Customer Spotlight, Small Cities, Technology, Utility Billing | Tagged | Comments Off on City of Lava Hot Springs Switches from DOS to BMS

How a Good Audit Trail Can Save You!

T2014-10-03O-Nahere’s only one word scarier than “tax prep”: Audit. Regardless of how scary this word sounds, there are tools and processes available that can save you
from a truly nasty predicament. Those processes include a thorough and comprehensive audit trail.

Despite use of the word “trail”—which insinuates a long and lengthy process—the idea of an audit trail is actually very simplistic and feasible. Creating an
audit trail is as simple as:

1. Utilizing software that allows you to make notes on entries and changed accounting records

2. Logging the details of the change or record for future reference

3. Including in the audit trail details of who did what, when, how, and for how much, and

4. Read more >

Posted in Best Practices, BMS Products, Government Accounting Standards, Office Efficiency | Comments Off on How a Good Audit Trail Can Save You!

8 Things Every City Clerk Should Understand and Know About in 2016


T2014-10-03O-Nahe job of being a City Clerk requires wearing many hats: software user, recorder, reporter, coworker, conference-goer, accountant, social media expert, customer service provider, budgeter…there is no end to the many roles and tasks completed by city clerks on the daily. In honor of a new year that promotes continued learning and self-improvement, we’ve compiled a list of what we believe are the eight things every city clerk should know and understand for 2016.

What the Cloud is?
With so many agencies going to “The Cloud,” it is important to know exactly what this dreamy concept is and how it affects data computing and storage. Read more >

Posted in Accounting Basics, Best Practices, BMS Products, Cloud Computing, Government Accounting Standards, Office Efficiency, Technology | Tagged , , , , , , , | Comments Off on 8 Things Every City Clerk Should Understand and Know About in 2016

EOY Financial Statements

Common Mistakes on EOY Financial Statements

A2014-10-03O-Nas if the beginning of the new year—with all its accruals, deferred assets, and budget comparisons—wasn’t a big enough bugger, those in charge of end-of- year financial statements have one more obstacle in their year-end reporting: examining the financial reports for accuracy.

Thoroughly reviewing end-of-year reports to ensure accuracy and accountability is vital. With so many items and numbers to look at, that can be an overwhelming task, so we’ve compiled a list of the most common mistakes found on financial statements.

Common Mistakes on End-of-Year Financial Statements and Reports

Overlooking Expense Line Items. Read more >

Posted in Accounting Basics, Best Practices, BMS Products, Government Accounting Standards, Office Efficiency, School Software, Technology, Utility Billing | Tagged , , , , , , , | Comments Off on EOY Financial Statements

What is Cloud, in Five Letters

cloud-computing-626252_640 copy

How can five letters leave you so confused, like your head’s in the clouds? Well, when you’re talking about something that you can’t see, is indeterminable in size, and exists “in the clouds,” it’s understandable why people are confused by it. So, we’ve broken down the cloud in five letters:
C, L, O, U, D.

An Explanation of the Cloud in Five Letters (CLOUD)

C – Computing. Cloud, or more formally known as “cloud computing,” is the practice of using a network of remote servers, “the cloud,” to store, manage, and/or process data rather than on a local network server or a personal computer’s hard drive. Read more >

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Dealing with Change: Tips for a Seamless Software Conversion

7K0A0190How many times have you heard the words, “that’s the way we’ve always done it” from a co-worker’s mouth? Most likely, a lot! So when it comes time to make a change—in assigned roles, vendors, software, or processes—it can be difficult! Especially when we’ve grown so accustomed to a certain way of doing things.

In the wise words of Socrates, “The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new.”

At Black Mountain Software, we understand what it means to ask a county, municipality, school or utility to change. Read more >

Posted in Best Practices, BMS Products, BMS Staff, Cloud Computing, Office Efficiency, School Software, Small Cities, Technology, Utility Billing | Tagged , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Dealing with Change: Tips for a Seamless Software Conversion

New IRS Resource helps Employers Understand the Health Care Law

by: The United States Internal Revenue Service

The following article can be posted on your websites and used in other communication vehicles to help employers get the facts about the new IRS web page for applicable large employers.

The new ACA Information Center for Applicable Large Employers page on IRS.gov features information and resources for employers of all sizes on how the health care law may affect them if they fit the definition of an applicable large employer.

The web page includes the following sections:

  • What’s Trending for ALEs,
  • How to Determine if You are an ALE,
  • Resources for Applicable Large Employers, and
  • Outreach Materials.
Read more >
Posted in Accounting Basics, BMS Products, City Clerk Cafe, Government Accounting Standards, Office Efficiency, School Software, Small Cities | Tagged , , , | Comments Off on New IRS Resource helps Employers Understand the Health Care Law

Ease the Pain of ACA Reporting Requirements

The_Affordable_Care_Act

It’s every agency’s nightmare: more, new or changing federal reporting requirements. The Affordable Care Act, or ACA, reporting requirements are in effect, and we have until the beginning of next year to determine how to effectively and accurately report a variety of health care and employee information or face penalties and excise taxes.

In order to successfully fulfill the ACA reporting requirements, it is important to understand what ACA reporting is, when it is required, what it involves, and what your software vendor is doing to assist with an easy transition. This most certainly will affect your administrative process, and the software tools and support to comply will be more important than ever. Read more >

Posted in Best Practices, BMS Products, City Clerk Cafe, Government Accounting Standards | Tagged , , , , , , | Comments Off on Ease the Pain of ACA Reporting Requirements

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