Board of Finance
Monday, June 26, 2017
7:30 p.m., Town Hall Hearing Room
Present: William Alvarez, Chairman; S. Clark; W. Mazzucco; J. Dolan; K. Yonkers; M. Lewis.
Also present: Julia Pemberton, First Selectman; P. O’Donnell; M. Thompson; S. Gniadek; P. Moisio; Members of the Board of Education; Members of WPCC; members of the public; videographers.
The Chairman called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m.
- To approve Minutes of Meetings held on May 22, 2017
On the motion of K. Yonkers and the second of W. Mazzucco, the Board voted to approve the May 22, 2017 Meeting Minutes. J. Dolan and S. Clark abstained.
- Tax Collector’s Report
Pat Moisio reported collections exceeding 100% of budget. The ATM machine is being delivered this week. Tax bills were sent and collections are at $1.7 million which is greater than last year at this time.
The suspense account report is being finalized and will be presented at the July meeting.
- Finance Director’s Report
Steve Gniadek revised the projected revenue forecast to a shortfall of $77,000. The expense forecast is revised to $244,000. The BOE is returning a surplus of $37,000 from the fiscal year ended June 30, 2016, and a rebate of $27,000 is expected from the Town insurer, CIRMA. Chairman Alvarez asked the Finance Director to investigate the source of the refund from the Board of Education and to determine whether it is for operating or capital expenditures.
Mr. Gniadek reviewed a CCM article providing information on the State budget. W. Mazzucco reported on the BOE meeting noting approximately $800,000 in unspent funds of which the Board of Education put $400,000 in health reserves and return the balance to the Town.
Per S. Gniadek, the initial audit meeting is scheduled for mid-July.
- Treasurer’s Report
Chairman Alvarez summarized the Treasurer’s Report as noted in the submitted documents.
- WPCC Plant Issues
WPCC Chairman Richard Regan provided a detailed account of recent failures and actions taken regarding the wastewater treatment facility in Georgetown. The facility is not operating, sewage must be transported at a cost of $3,000 per day, and repairs will be costly.
WPCC member, Jim Miller, reported that there is a conference call with the manufacturer and operator 6/27/17 concerning remedies and associated costs. M. Lewis spoke on the need to devise a disaster recovery system as a backup.
Julia Pemberton contacted Town Counsel and noted a Town meeting may be necessary due to the possible costs to replace or repair the modules. She will provide details after the conference call if a special meeting is warranted.
Ward Mazzucco commended the Commission on their hard work and dedication to the project. D. Pattee stated that at this time, there are no permit violations.
- July 1st Salary discussion
Julia Pemberton reviewed the proposed budgeted 2.5% pay increase for non-union Town employees since no State budget is yet in place. She noted that no additional stipends or adjustments would be granted, since all employees are currently in a satisfactory range. Chairman Alvarez noted that the increase was included in the budget and possible additional levies imposed by the State will not be materially affected by the relatively small budgeted increase. J. Pemberton noted that out of the $90,000 budgeted, only $63,000 will be used for the increases.
On the motion of W. Mazzucco and the second of M. Lewis, the Board voted unanimously to recommend to the Board of Selectmen to proceed with the 2.5% increase in salary as presented for the non-union employees of the Town.
Dr. Yonkers warned the Board to be aware of the bigger picture and short-term gaps.
- Reports from Individual Board members as assigned
Chairman Alvarez reported on the BOE/BOF Subcommittee and review of consultant bids to provide services to the Town re: financial operation of BOE. In addition, the Region 9 BOE has requested use of the consultant services and will enter into a separate engagement with the consultant.
Ward Mazzucco summarized the 6/27/17 BOE meeting. He stated that members of the Board of Education commented favorably on the need for a review of the financial operations, as a way to increase trust between the Boards of Education and Finance, demonstrate transparency to the public, and possibly improve financial operations. He also reported that the Board of Education passed a motion authorizing Dr. McMorran to cooperate fully. The Board confirmed that the intent is in good faith to review financial operations of the Board of Education, and possibly recommend future improvements, if deemed necessary, but not to conduct any sort of “witch hunt”. One possible outcome could be to identify the need for additional financial personnel in the Central Office.
On the motion of M. Lewis and the second of W. Mazzucco, the Board voted unanimously to engage PKF O’Connor Davies to perform an assessment as presented for a cost not to exceed $30,000.
- Correspondence and Administrative matters
- Executive Session re: GLDC foreclosure
On the motion of W. Mazzucco and the second of J. Dolan, the Board voted unanimously to go into Executive Session at 9:00 p.m. with the Board of Selection to discuss pending litigation re: GLDC foreclosure.
The Board came out of Executive Session at 10:19 p.m. No action was taken.
On the motion of W. Mazzucco and the second of K. Yonkers, the Board voted unanimously to adjourn the meeting at 10:20 p.m.
Kristi C. Reilly