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Finance & Advisory Committee Mtg
Finance Committee Meeting
Minutes of Meeting 2/17/2017
Aquinnah Town Hall Selectmen’s Mtg Room
Members present: Allen Rugg, Chairman, Tom Murphy, Mark Foster*.
Also present: Adam Wilson, Town Administrator; Emily Day, Town Accountant, Selectman Juli Vanderhoop, Angela Cywinski*, Jay MacLeod, Elise LeBovit.
*Via Conference Phone
The meeting began at 9:30 am.
-1st on the agenda under Old Business was a review of the minutes from 12/5. Allen asked that Mark send his notes to Adam to properly format and then review for approval at the next meeting.
-1st on the agenda under New Business was a review of budget materials. Allen said the review will be guided by Emily and the committee will need to schedule meetings for March and early April so recommendations can be ready for the Town Meeting in May.
-Emily produced a budget cover page showing the committee members the name of the town hall staff person responsible for each budget area. She explained that education is 1/3rd of the budget. It is projected to be up 10.25%. She said the Personnel Committee is still working on salary compensation. She explained the spreadsheet format there is both a prior year report and a mid-year fiscal spending report to 12/31.
-Allen asked about the reallocation that occurs when the fiscal year ends. Emily explained her ability to adjust the total budget to bring expenses in line with proposed spending. Zero based spending was discussed. She said budget reallocation does get approved by the FinCom and done by July 15th. Emily also talked about the Reserve Fund being available as well for extraordinary/unanticipated expenses. She explained that the reserve has always been in place and used by the Selectmen absent a FinCom who has voting control over the fund.
-Emily explained the expenses for community programs and recreational facilities. She went through the different departments budgets. Adam clarified what was spent for advertising. Allen asked where the line item would go for a new position each committee should consider to help with their meetings.
-Emily discussed the role Missy has and what Sibel does as Treasurer. The Assessor’s budget was reviewed. Tom asked about the property revaluation due. Angela said there is still a 3 year reval for this year and it will also include a personal property review as well. She explained her role this year and how many more hours she will need to accomplish her tasks. There was discussion about Angela’s salary. She said every 3rd year she runs into comp time issues because of the extra work involved in town revaluation.
-Emily talked about department budget expenses each department has and having the ability to participate in conferences. She also explained the longevity factor. Allen explained that there is a classification & compensation study going on and the PC will finalize their recommendations to the BOS and the FinCom. There was discussion about the Tax Collector and her hours and what she posts personally and what is outsourced. There was discussion about the legal budget. Adam said that the budget for legal was for hours and not a retainer.
-Emily discussed Data Processing and the software contracts that are paid for at the beginning of the fiscal year.
-There was discussion about election costs in the Town Clerk’s budget. Emily said there is a revenue side to each department and she hopes to be able to show local receipts are from last year. Elise said it would be nice to have a report on annual revenues as well.
-Allen asked about the Building & Grounds busget. Emily said it now includes expenses for lighthouse maintenance. She sad most expenses are signed off by Jay but other capital expenses get signatures from Adam, Randhi and the BOS. Mark said the building Inspector could help in determining what needs fixing 1st. There was discussion about what goes into the maintenance costs for running the lighthouse. Other fundraising sources, including free cash and how it is accumulated, was talked about, including the timing of its reporting and what has been spent.
-The police, fire and ambulance service department budgets were talked about. Adam said he can get Chief Reitmeir to discuss the operation to the FinCom if needed.
-There was discussion about the school assessments. Emily suggested going forward a member of the FinCom should go with AQ rep Teresa Manning to learn more about how those budgets are built. School budget meetings and a review of the ambulance service agreement and its operation was talked about.
-Other smaller departments were reviewed including Emergency Management Director, Animal Control Officer and the Harbormaster/Shellfish Constable. Mark asked about having Chip come and speak about his shared responsibilities. Juli said the state has cut funding and more revenue maybe needed. There was discussion about raising prices for moorings and shellfish permits.
-Highway expenses were looked at. Emily explained how the Snow & Ice line item can go over budget and then made up for in the next fiscal year and how reimbursement can occur for big snow storms. Tom asked about wages for janitor work.
-Board of Health expenses was reviewed. Regional assessments were reviewed. The health board’s responsibilities for health and safety were talked about. Other smaller committees and town departments’ expenses were reviewed. The library budget and personnel was reviewed.
-The fees for parking at the beach and the parking lot were reviewed as well as the budget expenses for personnel.
-The pupil school expense was talked about and the difference of what it costs to send a student to West Tisbury vs Chilmark. There was discussion about the costs of running both schools and how it appears to be a political fight instead of a budgeting one. Tom said he’d be happy to attend meetings. There was discussion about the AIFinCom and AQ’s attendance. Allen said he plans to participate.
-Debt was discussed as well as fixed costs. Sibel’s role was defined.
-Adam talked about time frames. Joint meetings with the FinCom and BOS were talked about. The FinCom will plan for meetings to occur and invite Tri-Town and the schools to explain their process. Also the Council On Aging can come if asked as well as the MVC. Angela’s request for extra hours was talked about.
-The FinCom decided to meet beginning March 13th. Tom said he’ll be overseas starting the 12th. Tom’s available the 2nd and 3rd, 6th, 9th & 10th. Friday the 10th Emily will have most of the departmental #’s together.
Mark said he’s available to jump in anytime. The group decided to meet with Tri-Town the 24th and 25th with another week to wrap it all up.
-Allen asked if there was any other business to come before the board. Hearing none, a motion was made and seconded to adjourn.
The Committee voted 3 – 0. The motion passed.
-The meeting ended at 11:36 am