Village of Mantua
Finance Committee Meeting
November 11, 2010
Call to Order- 6:31 P.M.
Roll Call: Ben Prescott, Linda Clark, Roger Hawkins all here.
Others: Clerk-Treasurer Jenny August, Mayor Donna Hawkins, Police Chief Harry Buchert.
Citizens: Patsi Gast
Motion to approve the Minutes from the October meeting by Linda, seconded by Ben. Both voted yes.
Jenny gave the Financial reports. The Fund status at the end of October was $433,021 slightly higher than it was a year ago. Revenues were $135,382. Expenses including payroll totaled $94,341. There were no fund adjustments. Water and Sewer reconciled exactly, as did Income Tax. The bank reconciliation went through with no adjusting factors. Jenny also mentioned that we made the Sterling & cruiser payments this month. Jenny said we are on target for quarterly withholdings, but about $40,000 short on the final return payments.
Motion to move Financial reports to Council by Roger, seconded by Linda. All voted yes.
2010-16 American Legion contract for Park Lodge- this has been worked out and should come off the table. We will review it in 8 years. Jenny said the amendments are in Exhibit A of your legislation. Donna said there is also a termination clause.
2010-40 Ben said this is final reading. He asked if there is any discussion. Donna Hawkins said the Finance Committee’s concern is regarding the trust fund. She read item A in the legislation. She has a problem with giving all power to the Cemetery Trustee Board. She said what we are doing is allowing the Cemetery Board to dictate to Council as to what they are going to allow to be used from the Cemetery Trust Fund. Council is allowing a group of citizens who act as a board that does not even exist. She said we are putting three people, appointed by her that she has not even appointed yet, to act as the Cemetery Board and dictate to Council. Ben said there are ORC regulations that he will check into. He was going to check with Michele to make sure we are doing things the way the Auditors want. Linda said she thought that if the Cemetery Board is not reappointed, they just roll over. Donna said that is absolutely not true.
2010-41 Revised Zoning Fee’s. This will be part of the Public hearing.
2010-42 Water wells on areas of the Village not served by Village Municipal Water Supply. Harry wondered if we should consider tabling this since we don’t have a Village Administrator. Patsi asked if we are going forward with allowing them to drill. Ben said we are allowing it to be voted on. Donna said it will also be discussed at the Public Hearing.
2010-46 The 2011 Appropriations- Ben gave Harry the floor. Harry said in the budget that was passed, the Safety budget was $441,175 and it is now reduced to 426,300 and he wonders why it was reduced when this is the only department that is bringing in new revenues (of $30,000). He feels that the Police Department has been very conscientious in their spending. Jenny said she went to Clerk training and was taught to never appropriate all of the money. She also noted that the Police Department year to date has nearly $100,000 of wiggle room money with only 6 weeks left in the year. Jenny doesn’t want to penalize the Police Department for doing such a great job of watching their spending, but this proves that with careful spending, it can be done. Possibly the appropriations were always set so high.
Harry wants to go back to 24/7 protection. Jenny said there is $76,000 of unspent wages because he has been so careful about overtime, and it could be done now if he chooses. Roger asked Harry if this budget would allow him to back to 24 hour protection and Harry said no. He said he was cut when the budget was done, and now he is cut further with these appropriations. Jenny said his new budget was reduced by about $15,000 and electric and gas was removed from his budget, which is about $6,000, so his budget is really only reduced about $10,000. Roger said we should budget for full protection. Jenny said this shows that with careful budgeting it could have been done. Jenny then asked Harry if he hired a midnight shift person for the four nights we don’t have coverage, would that eat up the $76,000 he has in slush money right now? Harry said no. Roger asked what he would like to see it increased to. Harry said $441,475 in the original budget. Ben said if something comes up, Harry is always supported by Council.
Jenny said he also has Police Training Fund and Police Capital if he needed extra. Jenny said the slush fund of $76,000 is only in Officer wages, he actually has nearly $100,000 total slush money. Does he really need more appropriations? Harry said the whole department has been committed and we might need to look at wage increases. Ben said we should see how our Income Taxes look in April. Harry asked if there is going to be any rollover in the General Fund or if we will end up in the red. Jenny said the General Fund will need money to help the sewer debt, and then we will have a better idea. Jenny did not feel we would go into the red.
Patsi asked how many officers are on duty during the day. Harry said one. Jenny said she thought there were at least two days a week that we have two on during the day. Harry said he needs time for paperwork, and that has been cut back. Patsi wondered if we could put more officers on at night instead of during the day. Roger asked if there was Police protection during the car wash robbery, Harry said no.
Jenny said we can’t we can’t just add more to appropriations, and we have a General Fund total of $680,000. If we want to add $10,000 to the Safety budget, we have to take it from another area. We know in 2012 we will save $12,000 per year on medical insurance. Donna said we can eliminate the appropriations for trash pick-up. There is $1,100 from General Fund that can go to the Chief’s budget. Donna said if the Safety budget is appropriated at $426,000, and he still has $90,000 in November, she doesn’t get what the problem is. Jenny said that is her point exactly. Patsi asked how much it would cost Harry to put one Officer on at night. Harry said about $40,000. Patsi asked why he can’t do it now. Jenny said we wouldn’t have to hire a full time with benefits, just one or two part time Officers. Donna said he if has $18,000 in reductions, and has $90,000 extra, and if he hires someone at $40,000 he still has plenty. Patsi agreed.
Linda Clark said she has questions on page two under Mayor and Council. Jenny said that means Administration. Linda asked about insurance and bonding and administrative operating. Jenny said this is for all Administrative expenses such as the copy machine and 20 plus cases of paper. The wages are for everyone except Sue and herself, which is in the Clerk-Treasurer section. The insurance and bonding is the insurance payment for all of our buildings and vehicles and liabilities. The Auditors recommended that this is split up between funds, but the other funds do not have money to support their share of the payment. The Mayor asked why it goes under Mayor and Council. Jenny said she would change it to say Administration. Fund 1000-710 is Administration.
Reimburse Mayor for performing marriages makes it look like she is not getting money in. Why does it have to be on the appropriations? Jenny said we can’t pay you unless it is appropriated. Donna said she doesn’t use all that postage. Jenny said the Mayor does not have a budget, it is Administration. Donna said under Clerk-Treasurer and Assistant Clerk Treasurer, she doesn’t see Sue’s wages. Jenny said the amount is for both Sue and herself. Linda asked if it could be separated. Jenny said she would separate their wages.
Donna asked if we are in for another audit next year. Jenny said yes. Roger asked if we got any money reimbursed for audit expenses. Jenny said Betsy has paid her portion back. The auditors quoted our audit to be $13,000 and they went $10,000 over. Donna said it is a big money maker for the state.
Donna said in Streets, we can remove garbage & trash removal. Linda said she will check to make sure the new company will be hauling grit for free.
Roger asked about savings from buying diesel from Crestwood. Jenny said we are saving money since we changed. Roger said we didn’t pay any last year. Jenny said it was all lumped under “operating”. Linda said we are breaking operating expenses down, and Jenny looked at all the past bills and made estimates to set the split out appropriation amounts.
Donna asked about Contractual Services, water mains and paving. She wasn’t sure if that was enough. Jenny said we can also use Permissive and State Highway funds. Donna asked how much she has in Permissive. Jenny said there is $20,000 appropriated, but there is more money available. If Council decides to pave a road, the appropriations can be increased. Jenny said there is over $60,000 in the fund. The Street Fund is getting $4,000 more than last year, and that is based on this years revenues. Ben wanted to make sure we appropriate enough to haul sludge when we need to. Linda said there is enough appropriated for three hauling’s. Donna said we are not under contract with Agri-sludge, but she checked around and we are getting a good rate.
2010-47 Signs on Parked Vehicles. Donna said we don’t want businesses parking their vehicles with signage specifically for advertising. Linda felt it needed to be expanded because the way it reads is that it would be considered a violation if they had a sign on their vehicle and they were parked on a side street at home. Ben said we can tweak this. Jenny said we don’t have any offenders, so why are we doing this? Roger said to stop them from doing it in the future. Jenny said this is not Hudson, and we should not restrict our business owners from doing anything they need to do to get business. Linda felt that the businesses in town will take offense to this. Harry said this would affect Hunter’s 3. Donna said that it was determined that it would not affect Hunter because his vehicles moved across the street so he would have a place to park his trucks. Donna said this ordinance is to protect the Village.
2010-48 Advancing money from General Fund to Glacial Esker Trail fund. Jenny said it was no longer necessary to do this advance because the project is nearly done. There is still $4,000 and all they need is gravel at this point. Linda asked Donna if she is getting all of her paperwork together for reimbursement.
2010-49 To appropriate the money that will be advanced, plus a small amount currently in the fund that is not appropriated. Jenny felt this also is not necessary and Jenny feels it could be failed. However, the fund has $9,000 but only $7,000 is appropriated. We will do separate legislation to appropriate the un-appropriated money, and if it is not needed, we will use it for advancing funds back to General Fund.
2010-51 Establishing a new fund for Special Events. Linda asked for an explanation. Donna said the money earned from events can roll over from year to year. Linda asked for a definition of the Special Event Ad-hoc Committee. Linda asked if the meetings were advertised in the paper. Donna said they were on the T.V. channel. Linda thought it was a private organization like the Soap Box Derby. Donna said it was formed out of Planning and Aaron explained to Council that it was a committee. Ben asked if they are keeping minutes. Dona said it would be easy to do. Jenny said if it is a Village function, all of the money should go through the Village. Jenny had concerns about the Scouts keeping the pumpkin money. Donna explained that the Village kept the vendors money, but the Scouts sold Pumpkins similar to a vendor. Janet Esposito said it is being done correctly. Jenny thought Council should make a motion allowing the Scouts to keep all of the money for the pumpkins being rolled for auditing purposes. Jenny said by making it a separate fund, the money can build from year to year, which would not happen if the money was in the General Fund.
2010-52 Adopting residential refuse collection. Ben thought we would have to suspend the rules either this meeting or next so it is in effect by Jan. 1. Ben said there is a portion that goes into the zoning code.
2010-53 Outdoor sales relating to Zoning Ordinances. Jenny asked for clarification on the ice machines. Donna said if Italiano’s sold there business, the new owner could have an ice machine in the very same spot if it were done within 30 days. Jenny asked “What about the yard sale guy or the mattress guy putting merchandise out?” Donna said it is a different situation. Linda asked what prompted this. Jenny said it is hurting our businesses. Donna said it keeps merchandise from obstructing our sidewalks. Roger said it would keep us from having paper boxes and vending machines from lining our streets. Donna said we want to be proactive. Jenny asked what it hurts to have the mannequin out at Comfort Café, and what is wrong with the blinking lights on the open signs? Donna said those rules have been in place for a long time. Jenny said we should be un-doing those restrictions to help the businesses right now. Roger said if you look at the picture of the Downtown Mantua Streetscape picture, do you see vending machines?
Bills of Resolution:
Linda asked about the Stamm’s bill that didn’t have a purchase order. Jenny said we didn’t put it on the bills list because we don’t know who it belongs to. Donna thought it was the Scouts and she thought Marty had talked to Jenny about it. Jenny said he did not.
Linda said she found several then and now’s while looking through the invoices. Ben said when we get a new Village Administrator; we need to make sure they are getting purchase orders before spending money. Donna said they are really trying and she doesn’t know how this happened. Harry said some companies don’t give a price until they are coming out, so they try to put a good guess and do a P.O.
Jenny asked if they want to renew the Sam’s Club membership. She said it isn’t being used so she didn’t think we need to renew. Harry agreed. Linda makes a motion not to renew, Ben seconded, all ayes.
Linda asked about the Vanguard invoice. Why another “then and now”? Jenny said we had work done on October 28th, and a purchase requisition on November 3rd with an additional amount needed on the 4th. Ben said it is the service department again.
Linda asked about the Purchase Requisition that says “West Prospect Street McCauley project”. That is the wrong street, and it is not a McCauley project.
Linda asked about the clothing allowances. Why are the dispatchers buying leather gloves? She thought they should be using their clothing allowances for clothes. Jenny said a dispatcher also bought a $100 pair of boots. Jenny thought maybe we could consider giving them a certain number of pants or shirts each year.
Motion to recommend the Bills of Resolution to Council by Roger, seconded by Linda . All voted yes.
Fire Departments Contract.
Harry recommends that we allow them to freeze the increase to the 2010 price. Harry said the Safety Committee recommends freezing the 3 ½% increase until 2012. Michele will make a resolution so we have a paper trail. Roger asked if they might help us put up and take down the Christmas wreaths. Harry thought it would be hard for them to bring out that big truck for that purpose.
Motion to freeze the increase from the 2010 rate until 2012 by Ben, seconded by Linda. All ayes on vote.
Potato Festival Contract.
Ben wants to make a contract of $5 per month for ten years and wave all prior unpaid fees. Roger said he has an issue with that. Roger said there was a contract, they agreed to pay the utilities and they have not been paid. If you look at the span of the contract, that represents $50,000 and it is not a civic organization, it is a private organization and the Ohio Revised Code says we have to put it out for bids. He wants to go on record that the Ohio Revised Code chapter 721.03 Lease or sale of real estate- advertisement for bids. No contract, except as provided in section 721.28 of the Revised Code, for the sale or lease of real estate belonging to a municipal corporation shall be made unless authorized by an ordinance, approved by a two-thirds vote of the members of the legislative authority of such municipal corporation, and by the board or officer having supervision or management of such real estate. When the contract is so authorized, it shall be made in writing by such board or officer, and, except as provided in section 721.27 of the Revised Code, only with the highest bidder, after advertisement once a week for five consecutive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation within the municipal corporation. Ben said he wasn’t going to take Rogers interpretation. Roger said he didn’t interpret, he just read it. Roger said he will form a protest if we don’t do this. Roger said he talked to people and is waiting to get an answer from the Attorney General. Linda questioned the electric bills. Could we put in the contract that they would pay the September electric? Ben said there is no way to separate it. Roger said it is separate. Harry said the concession stand for the Lions is attached to that building. Linda said it is shut off now, but going backwards, there is no way to separate the usage. Donna asked when we will see the new contract, and Ben said Michele is working on it. Roger said we have to put it up for bids and he wants that verbatim. Roger said he doesn’t want to be the one breaking the law, and Ben said nobody is breaking the law. Roger recommends that we go by the Ohio Revised Code. And he recommends that the Ohio Revised Code be observed.
CT Bills regarding Glacial Esker Trail.
This is for Brian’s three hours. Linda called and asked him what the three hours were. He said it is from when he and the Mayor got together and changed some plans for the observation decks, and preparing the reimbursement for Cody’s deck. Linda wondered why he waited until October to submit charges for work he did in May. She thought we had settled with CT and agreed that we were free and clear, and all PO’s were closed. Now Rich is submitting a bill that refers to a 2007 P.O. Harry said that when Council paid the bill off, it was for past projects, and this project is still open. Ben said we closed all P.O.’s. Jenny said that Rich should come to Council and say that they are going to work on something and it should cost a certain amount of hours and Council should approve it. Donna said CT will be doing the reimbursement and will be charging us. Linda said when she was speaking to Brian, he kept saying “Do you want me to do this?” and she said she told him “I am only one Council person, and I can’t authorize you to do any work, I am just asking questions.” Ben said from now on he wants the meeting officially changed to 6:00.
Purchasing a new plow truck.
Linda makes a motion to put the annual fee for DAS on the bills list. Seconded by Ben. All ayes. Ben said we will need another motion to purchase a vehicle after we find one. Jenny said we can look at the new contract when it comes out in December, and hopefully find one we can pay cash for instead of financing.
Raises or Bonuses.
Ben said we really have to wait until we hire a new Village Administrator and Plant Operators. Then see where we are. Donna asked how much we will need to pull from the General Fund for the OWDA payment. Jenny said she didn’t know yet. Ben asked how much the payment is. Jenny said it is over $217,000 twice a year. Linda said in the spring we can see what we can do and consider making it retroactive.
Pay Scale for Village Administrators, Plant Operators, and part time employees.
Regarding the positions, Ben would like them all to be part time. He feels we need to get some ideas of what we need to pay. Donna said Jenny had thrown out a number of $35,000 for a Village Administrator. Jenny said it was a rough guess just to put appropriations together. Donna said it is not that far off. Hiram’s Village Administrator make $35,000 to $55,000 and Garrettsville makes $45,000, and ours was very high. Donna said as far as the Plant Operators, Jenny had thrown out a figure of $16,000 for water, and $25,000 for sewer. She would like to get a combined license. Linda thought no more than $2,000 per month for both. Linda said this is just to be on call for a flat fee. Donna said maybe we could discuss this in Executive Session further. Donna said she needs to hire snow plow workers, hired as Seasonal employees. There is one that will work on a 1099, but not the others. She needs to know how much money to offer. She thought about $12 per hour. Jenny said John Hanning is $10.50 and someone that comes in to plow will make nearly as much as Tom. Donna said “But John mows the cemetery; he is not on call at night to come in and plow our streets.” Donna felt that she had to make it attractive enough for them in order to cut the overtime. Jenny said some of our Police Officers are barely $12 per hour. Ben felt we should ask them how much they want to make. Roger felt we should know what we are going to pay or else we will need another meeting. Ben said we should get it as cheap as we can. Donna said our part time people in 2006 made $11.00 per hour. Jenny said Louie was part time seasonal and he plowed for $8.50 per hour. She thought maybe people are desperate enough just to work that they might take less. Donna said Finance could make a recommendation in Executive Session.
Motion to adjourn at 9:00 P.M. by Linda, seconded by Ben. All voted yes.
Ben Prescott, Chair of Finance Committee
Clerk-Treasurer Jenny August