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Minutes of Board of Finance, 11/23/2015

AGENDA: Board of Finance

RECEIVED 11/30/2015 8:30am

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Minutes

Present: Alvarez (Chairman), Clark, Dolan, Mazzucco, O’Donnell, Yonkers

Also present:  Finance Director Gniadek, Treasurer Meehan, Tax Collector Moisio, two members of the public, a representative of Redding Pilot, and the videographer

Chairman Alvarez called the meeting on November 23, 2015 to order at 7:30 pm in the Conference Room of the Redding Town Hall.

APPOINTMENT OF BOARD CHAIRMAN AND VICE CHAIRMAN

Mr. Mazzucco nominated Mr. Alvarez as Chairman and Mr. Dolan as Vice Chairman.  The nomination was seconded by Dr. Yonkers and unanimously approved.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES

Motion: move that the Redding Board of Finance approve the minutes of the October 26, 2015 meeting as corrected.  Yonkers, Mazzucco. Approved. 5-0-1. Mrs. O’Donnell abstained.

Correction: page 1, under Tax Collector Report, the collection rate last year was 53.5% compared with the current year of 53.3%.

WELCOME

Mr. Alvarez welcomed Mrs. O’Donnell to the board and Mrs. Meehan as the new Town Treasurer.

PRESENTATION OF 2015 CAFR BY THE AUDITORS

Scott Bassett of RSM US LLP presented and reviewed the draft 2015 CAFR.  He noted that McGladrey is has changed their name to RSM US LLP.  He stated that the audit had a clean report and he highlighted significant information.  Mr. Bassett anticipates the final report will be available by December 4, 2015.

Questions and comments regarding the draft report followed.

Motion: move that the Redding Board of Finance accept the 2015 CAFR as presented. Mazzucco, Dolan. Approved. Unanimous.

REPORT FROM TAX COLLECTOR

Ms. Moisio reported that, as of today, 53.5% of the budget had been collected, compared with 54% last year at the same time.  She noted that the property tax reminders would be mailed out on December 1, 2015.  Mrs. Moisio also commented that the new DMV CIVLS program (CT Integrated Vehicle & Licensing System) has some problems but these are being worked out at the state level.

REPORT FROM FINANCE DIRECTOR

Mr. Gniadek reported the price for heating oil has been locked in by the consortium. The price $1.97, will be effective for September 2016. Based on historical usage, he anticipates a savings of about $7,420.  There will also be savings for the Board of Education as they are members of the same consortium.

Mr. Gniadek noted that the State statute requiring a separate bond for the Town’s Treasurer has been repealed, and the position is now covered as a Town employee.  Each Town employee is covered for $100,000. The Tax Collector will continue to be a bonded position as required by statute.

The Neglected Cemetery Grant that was applied for was not approved.

The first budget workshop for the department heads was held last week.  Mr. Mazzucco commented that the joint meeting with the Board of Education and Board of Selectmen in December should be more of a discussion and go beyond a presentation of “budget drivers”. Mr. Alvarez commented that he met with the Board of Education Chairman and Superintendent McMorran to discuss the budget process.  Board members discussed what the joint meeting should accomplish followed.  Various board members felt that information should be shared, zero based budgeting should be used, the declining enrollment issues should be addressed, and the budget review process should be a collaborative effort.

Mr. Alvarez added that the long term use of the school buildings is one that should involve the school board, the Planning Commission, the Board of Selectmen and the Board of Finance.  He suggested that a joint committee could be established to study the issues of building use.

REPORT FROM TREASURER

Treasurer Janice Meehan introduced herself and provided her background in the world of finance. She noted that she has been transitioning into the position with help from Mrs. O’Donnell. She will begin the process of reviewing options for the current CD’s that are coming due.  Mr. Alvarez reminded Mrs. Meehan of the Board’s Investment Policy which limit where town funds can be held, and Mr. Mazzucco indicated that the Board favors laddered CDs, typically with one-year maturities.  Mr. Alvarez thought the Treasurer might consider more six-month CDs in light of the impending rise in interest rates.

2016 MEETING CALENDAR

The meeting date schedule for 2016 was reviewed.

Motion: move that the 2016 schedule of meeting dates be accepted as presented.  Mazzucco, Dolan. Approved. Unanimous.

REPORTS FROM INDIVIDUAL BOARD MEMBERS   –   None

CORRESPONDENCE AND ADMINISTRATIVE MATTERS   –   None

PUBLIC COMMENT

Jeanne Wendschuh, Deer Spring Road:  Mrs. Wendschuh was pleased that the Board of Finance would look at all the town space as town property, and that the board had a discussion about working with the Board of Education to make the budget process move forward smoothly.  She suggested that the Board of Finance establish a target, either a percentage increase/decrease, or what would be acceptable, and that be done sooner than later.

ADJOURNMENT

Motion: move that the Redding Board of Finance meeting be adjourned. Dolan, Yonkers. Approved. Unanimous.

The meeting adjourned at 9:00 pm

Submitted by Mary Maday, Recording Secretary