FINANCE COMMITTEE MEETING
Monday, November 25, 2013- 6 PM
Council Chamber Room
1. Call to Order & Roll Call
Committee Members: Chairman Steve Jasinski, Ald. Karen Michalczyk, Ald. Sean McDermott, Ald, Scott Musillami, Finance Director Steve Drazner
2. Approval of Minutes: 10/28/13
3. Presentation of monthly Treasurer’s Report for the period ended 10/31/13
4. Consideration to approve Goldstein & Associates 5/1/13 Police Pension Actuarial Valuation
5. Continued Discussion on FY15 General/CIP Fund budgets
6. Consideration to Approve Annual Property Tax Abatement Ordinances
7. Continued Discussion on the 50/50 Senior Transportation Program
8. Other Business
9. Move to Adjorn to Executive Session to revenue executive session minutes of 10/28/13
10. Reconvene to Open Session
MINUTES OF THE FINANCE COMMITTEE MEETING
CITY OF COUNTRYSIDE – CITY HALL
NOVEMBER 25, 2013 – 6:00 P.M. COUNCIL CHAMBER ROOM
1. Chairman Jasinski called the meetingto order at 6:00 P.M. Present: Mayor Krzeminski, Treasurer Jasinski, Clerk Sweeney, Aldermen Karen Michalczyk, Scott Musillami, Sean McDermott. Also present: Aldermen James Jasinski, Bob Pondelicek, John Von Drasek; City Administrator Gail Paul; Finance Director Steve Drazner; DPW Essig, Asst. Administrator Peterson, Police Chief Ford, Deputy Clerk Bartelt, ESDA Director Steve Norman.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES
2. The minutes of October 28, 2013 were approved as submitted.
TREASURER’S REPORT FOR 10-31-13
3. Fin. Dir. Drazner presented the Treasurer’s report for questions and/or comments. He provided an overview on the year-to-date figures with explanations for those revenues and expenditures have material budget to actual variance. With no questions, this item will be approved at the next Council meeting.
5-1-13 POLICE PENSION ACTUARIAL VALUATION
4. The firm of Goldstein & Associates was hired to perform the actuarial valuation which included the recommended pension contribution for the period of 5-1-13 to 4-30-14. The firm’s employer contribution recommendation of $752,620 is $47,620 over the budgeted amount in the current FY14. The Police Pension Board has not reviewed this information yet and it was FD Drazner’s suggestion to allow them to do so at their next Pension meeting, scheduled for 1-30-14 before making any contribution to the fund. The Committee concurred with the contribution of $752,620 but to defer such payment until after the police pension board has had the opportunity to review and discuss.
CONTINUED DISCUSSION ON FY15 GENERAL/CIP FUND BUDGETS
5. FD Drazner referred to the first page of his memo, to show the adjustments made from last month’s meeting. He itemized all adjustments which included 1) a relatively small increase of $10,000 to the local restaurant tax revenue, 2) a $50,000 decrease in fine revenue due to the anticipated loss of one red light camera next year, 3) a $45,000 increase to the annual police pension contribution based on the recently completed valuation, 4) a $10,000 (subsequently revised down to $4,000) increase in infrastructure improvements for an electrical upgrade in Countryside Park, 5) a reduction of $100,000 transferred from the GF to CIP Fund (made possible by current year savings, and 6) eliminating the $50,000 police locker room remodeling project. After these adjustments, the budget is still in balanced with a $250,000 property tax levy which is approximately 75% less than the levy in the current fiscal year. There was continued discussion about decreasing the $250,000 even further. The main course of action to allow this would be to use some or all of the expected savings from changing the project scope of the current fiscal year BMX Park project to a lower cost alternative. It was estimated at the previous Recreation Committee that any such change could save an estimated $100,000.
Alderman McDermott made a motion that all of the $100K savings from the BMX savings be applied toward further reducing the property tax levy from $250K to $150K. There was no second on the motion. There was some debate among elected officials on this suggestion and some wanted to put the $50K police locker room renovation back in the CIP budget. After continued discussion, Ald. Musillami subsequently made a motion to split the $100,000 savings of the BMX park project between the tax levy and the police renovation. Alderman Michalczyk seconded the motion. Motion carried.
FD Drazner prepared a schedule showing the cost of various levels of a property tax levy for most homeowners in Countryside. For example, a levy of $250,000 would cost a homeowner having a home valued at $350,000 approximately $86 for the year. If this levy was decreased to $160,000 (the amount suggested at the October meeting), it would cost that same homeowner $55 for the year, or only $31 less.
Ald. Pondelicek commented that he thought that the sales tax revenue numbers used by FD Drazner were on the conservative side and Mayor Krzeminski inquired whether the loss of the Dominick’s was taken into consideration in the budgeted sales tax. FD Drazner stated that he did make the necessary adjustments for the loss of sales tax dollars related to the Dominick’s but that loss would be largely offset by new business openings, particularly in the City Center. In addition, FD Drazner agreed with Ald. Pondelicek’s statement that he took a conservative approach and explained that he exercised some caution in preparing the revenues should the economy become more unstable due to anticipated problems with the health care reform act or other unresolved issues effecting the national economy. There was agreement among the committee that a cautious approach was the best approach at the present time.
FD Drazner also stated that compared with surrounding towns, Countryside is doing very well keeping its share of property tax rate low. Adm. Paul noted that this low tax rate could also be attributed to savings related to the outsourcing of the police dispatch center.
APPROVAL OF THE ANNUAL PROPERTY TAX ABATEMENT ORDINANCES
6. FD Drazner explained that the abatement ordinances would follow along the same lines as what the Council decided in the previous discussion. He said that the annual debt service for the two general obligation bond issues used to fund water infrastructure projects would be 100% abated since those are covered by water operating revenues. The 2008 GO bond issue has a debt service payment of $1,471,921 for next year. Based on the earlier discussion, $1,271,921 of this would be abated off of the property tax levy, leaving $200,000 to be funded via the property tax levy. Abatement ordinances will be drafted for formal approval at the December Council meeting.
50/50 SENIOR TRANSPORTATION PROGRAM
7. DC Bartelt presented a history of what costs were incurred for the five years the program was in operation. After surveying other towns and considering some restrictions to the program, abuses can be reduced. The main restriction would be to prohibit trips to the Airport and limit purchases to $50 per month. At the highest participation, close to $6,000 was spent. Council felt that $3-4,000 is a more accurate figure for this program. It was the consensus to include this program in the next fiscal year budget. FD Drazner will add $3,000 for this to the FY15 budget.
8. The Mayor asked about a Community Survey for the next fiscal year has been budgeted. FD Drazner stated that he didn’t believe so, but minor tweaking to the budget can still be made as discussion continues in January.
FD Drazner presented a Gaming Tax spreadsheet by Business. October was a good month and the first time that the City collected over $10K in monthly tax. If this trend continues, the actual tax should surpass the budgeted amount.
Adm. Paul stated that the CBA was hoping to renew the billboard advertising. She asked if the Council is agreeable to reimbursing the CBA the $24,000 for this expense. The committee concurred that this should be done.
9. Hearing no further business, meeting adjourned to executive session to review Minutes of 10-28-13 at 6:50 p.m.
Steve Jasinski, Chairman