FINANCE COMMITTEE MEETING
DECEMBER 3, 2013
Finance Committee Chair Ms. Vaughn opened the Finance Committee Meeting at 6:00 p.m. In attendance from the Committee were Ms. Vaughn, Ms. DePledge and Mr. D’Ambrosio. Also in attendance from Council were Mrs. Quinn-Hopkins, Mr. Licht, Mr. Hoefle and Council President Mr. Morley. Also in attendance was Councilman-at-Large Elect Mr. Evers.
In attendance from the Administration were Law Director Klammer, Finance Director Slocum, Police Chief Reik and Fire Chief Whittington. Mayor Andrzejewski, Service Director Semik and CBO McReynolds were absent.
Ms. Vaughn: Tonight we will do a brief budget review of the October financial statement. I have reviewed it and it looks like we are in good shape through the month of October. Does anyone have any comments?
Mr. Slocum: The only comment – and it is a fairly significant item that will hit in November is the tax refund. You will see where we had about $450,000 budgeted to collect in November – we will collect about $200,000. The positive variance we are showing there will go negative. I still think as I was quoted in the paper today I believe we will come in around the $600,000 number as it now stands. There are so many moving parts. We did process the last transfer to the bond retirement fund in November – the payment was made yesterday in the amount of $900,000. The December payments are both interest and principle.
Ms. Vaughn: But it looks like we will have sufficient money to run the City the rest of this year?
Mr. Slocum: Yes - which I am not worried about. We will have more worries next year.
Ms. Vaughn: What do you think the carry-over will be?
Mr. Slocum: Right now I would say $600,000.
Ms. Vaughn: Good, we will need every penny.
Mr. Slocum: We actually pretty much have the expenses ready to go for November. We are working on revenues and overall balance. I am hoping that even by the end of this week we may be in a position to publish. If not the end of this week then Monday and Tuesday of next week.
Ms. Vaughn: We have Council meetings the 10th and 17th of December so we are missing several weeks of preparation of budget and review of items. Any questions on October’s monthly financial reports?
Mr. Slocum: Did you receive the Expenses by Account report? Did you find it useful?
I will start doing this - this includes all funds and goes strictly by the account number. Most of the time we do not have any repeats on the account numbers but there are a couple.
Ms. Vaughn: I asked for this because I think it gives us a better overview of the entire City. We know how much we are paying for telephones. We don’t have to go to every Department and add it up.
Mr. Slocum: That is exactly what this does.
Ms. Vaughn: I think it is helpful for all of us in the decision making process. I thank you for you and your staffs’ work in preparing this. I hope everyone has had a chance to look at it. It gives us an idea of where we are at and where we are going. Although we do not know where we are going until we talk about revenues for next year.
There were no further questions or comment.
Ms. Vaughn: Mr. Slocum and I discussed that he will not be ready to discuss this until the 17th. Mr. Vuckovich will be at the December 17th meeting.
Mr. Slocum: I am really hoping that maybe by the end of this week I will know what type of re-appropriations we have. Now that we are pretty well done with the November expenses I can project out and if I have any issues I will know where I need to address them. I hope to have it in your hands by next Tuesday. If you wish we can discuss it at Council-as-a-Whole next Tuesday.
Ms. Vaughn: I have a draft copy of the original one. I looked at it but figured there would be changes because all the expenses were not in yet.
Mr. Slocum: We are pretty close and I am trying to fast track it. Hopefully, I can put it in your hands – not that you have to act on it next Tuesday. But, that would be fine.
Ms. Vaughn: We have next Tuesday or the following Tuesday. Mr. President, is it alright with you if we discuss the re-appropriations during the December 10th Council-as-a-Whole meeting?
Mr. Morley: I have no problem with it.
Mr. Slocum: I will not be at the December 17th meeting. I will be out of town. If we do not have this passed by December 10th Mr. Vuckovich will be at the December 17th meeting. He will be there anyways if you so wish.
Mr. D’Ambrosio: You think you will have it so we will have it this coming weekend?
Mr. Slocum: That is what I am pushing for. I already have it laid out – all I need to do is put in the numbers I need to change.
Ms. Vaughn: How much work is it for the Council Clerk to get it ready for the agenda and have the legislation ready?
Mr. Slocum: I already have the legislation drafted out.
There were no further questions or comments.
2014 TEMPORARY APPROPRIATIONS
Ms. Vaughn: It is my understanding that the 2014 Temporary Appropriations are for three months only. You calculated 50% of other expenses and 33% of personal services?
Mr. Slocum: As a general rule. If you look at this sheet the middle columns show the factors that I used. The first columns are the appropriations that I used today. The next two columns show how much I took for personal services and other expenses. Generally it is 33% and 50% but there are some cases where we took different –and I put in the word manual.
Mr. Licht: Is that based on when they are due?
Mr. Slocum: Some like the Municipal Court – we will get a bill from the Court in January – so, I know that is a first quarter bill. In that case I need much more than 50%. Under #240 Transfer to General Bond Retirement Fund – we will need $698,000 and we will need a number like that again next year. I only need $75,000 the first quarter because my payments come in February, August, June and December. That will cover the expenses I have in the first quarter.
Ms. Vaughn: What does Misc Government Expenses cost in the first quarter that is under a million dollars?
Mr. Slocum: A chunk of it is paying the retirees who are on year one, two and three. They get paid in January.
Ms. Vaughn: It will cost a million dollars?
Mr. Slocum: No, that is the component to $150,000. You will have the Service Director retiring as well as the other people who have retired in the last two years and will be getting their final sick pay payment.
Ms. Vaughn: I can understand that – it is the $999,000.
Mr. Slocum: If you look at the budget under #240 you will see three months plus of the hospital and dental which will run about $330,000. You have the Workman’s Comp number. Will I spend that million in the first 3 months - probably not. Since we are not passing a line item budget to start the year from my perspective we are not going to allow any new spending initiative that is not existing today without at least clearing it with you beforehand. There will be one item that will be different next year that I know of – that is dealing with the Fire Department. The firemen for the last two years have taken a 10% decrease in pay and we have picking up their 10% on their pension. That is going away.
Ms. Vaughn: That will hit – that is about $80,000.
Mr. Slocum: It will be about $25,000 in the first quarter. I will have things like the election expense. Where we got billed $3,800 this year I am expecting $25,000 - $30,000 next year because we have to cover for the primary and the last election.
Ms. Vaughn: Any other significant changes you wish to bring to our attention and then we will poll everyone to see what they want to make sure is included.
Mr. Slocum: The Public Health – I do not have the final number so I padded it a little. Taft Senior Center – we will be paying more of that salary out of the General Fund next year than what we paid this year because the money we received from the bequeathal fund is gone. I want all the money available for snow removal in the first quarter. The Municipal Motor Vehicle Fund is where we pay for the salt. If we don’t use it we will not spend it but you do not want me calling a special council meeting to increase the appropriations in the fund.
Ms. Vaughn: You still have money in here for Houston Fisher Pool and the old JFK. Can’t we just close that place down – we are not making enough money renting it out to pay $17,000 for the year.
Mr. Slocum: I think that all comes up in the budget talks. We do have a lease – you would have to take a look at the different covenants in the lease to see when we can actually walk away from it.
Chief Whittington: The Fire Department is interested in buying it and using it as a training center. That is part of my five year plan we submitted to you.
Mr. Morley: Mr. Slocum and I have had conversations about the budget. Obviously we have not sat down - since I do not take over until the first of the year – to discuss some of the things I would like to see in it. But, we want to go over it with all the Departments. I think everyone will be more involved in the budget from the Administrative side then they have been in the past. We had a couple of discussions with Chief Whittington on a few items. There are a couple of things I am going to look for. I do not have a lot I will want – just a few things. And, some of you are aware of them since the reduction in the Mayor’s salary – using that money for things I have talked about. We will look at that when the time comes. But, we have to get through these last 28 days and go from there.
Mr. Slocum: The Solid Waste Cost Center #730 – we are really not paying for garbage. If we collect money from the County – when we certify the garbage bills over and the County makes the collections and certify them to us – this is where I pay it off. Whatever number we end up with as an expense here you will find offsetting revenue in the other half of the ledger. It is actually a net zero – but, I need the appropriation to reimburse it. We did get the grant from the County on the recycling – about $33,000 – and, we will be sending that to Republic. Since the citizens are actually paying for the recycling the money will be evenly split between all our citizens – that is about a $5.00 credit.
Mr. Morley: Let us know when that happens so we are aware of it if we get phone calls.
Mr. Slocum: I have contacted Republic. I want to see something better on their bill this time then just put the credit on it. You will see that in the January bill but the April bill goes up because there is another increase in April. There are no real new spending initiatives contemplated with this temporary budget.
There were no further questions for Mr. Slocum.
Ms. Vaughn: Are there any comments from the Directors who are here tonight?
There were no comments.
There was no Miscellaneous.
RECOGNITION OF THE PUBLIC
The meeting was adjourned at approximately 6:20 p.m.