Select Page

Minutes of Board of Finance, 04/22/2019

AGENDA: Board of Finance

RECEIVED 04/25/2019 8:35am
Michele R. Grande – Redding Town Clerk

BOARD OF FINANCE
REGULAR MEETING
MONDAY, APRIL 22, 2019
7:30PM
TOWN HALL HEARING ROOM

Filed Subject to Approval

PRESENT:
Dr. Kimberly Yonkers, Chair; Ward Mazzucco; Rob Dean (7:31PM); Susan Clark; Jamie Barickman; Ed Miller (Absent)

ALSO PRESENT:
Steve Gniadek, Finance Director; Pat Moisio, Tax Collector; First Selectwoman Julia Pemberton; Selectwoman Peg O’Donnell; Joseph Centofanti, PKF O’Connor Davies; Members of the Public; Wes Higgins, Treasurer; Mike D’Agostino, Region 9 Chair; and Colleen Pilato, Redding BOE Member

Chair Yonkers called the meeting to order at 7:30PM.

1. TO APPROVE THE MINUTES OF THE BOF MEETING HELD ON MARCH 25, 2019

MOTION:
Mr. Mazzucco made a motion to approve the minutes of the BOF meeting held on Monday, March 25, 2019. Ms. Clark. There were four yes votes (Yonkers, Mazzucco, Clark, and Barickman) and one abstention (Dean, absent). The motion carried.

2. PUBLIC COMMENT

Chair Yonkers opened the floor to Public Comment.

Peter Bonfanti, Umpawaug Road, asked Mr. Barickman about the long-range financial plan initiative.

Mr. Higgins said that the group that does the long-range planning hasn’t met recently but can meet soon.

Mr. Barickman said long-term planning encompasses both operating budgets and their growth as well as the Town’s ten-year plan.

Mr. Dean said that planning used to focus on the totality of the community and how to achieve goals via capitalization and operating budgets. He said that planning has shifted as of recently and should be done considering all aspects of a community.

Chair Yonkers asked First Selectwoman Pemberton her thoughts on long-term financial planning. First Selectwoman Pemberton said the BOS has worked on this topic.

Ms. Clark said that Redding doesn’t have a dedicated group working on economic development. First Selectwoman Pemberton said that there has been some work towards economic development, but there is no institutional support currently.

Mr. Dean said the Town Plan of Conservation and Development would address these concerns.

Chair Yonkers suggested that this topic should be added as an agenda item for the next BOF meeting. First Selectwoman Pemberton said this is an agenda item for a future BOS meeting. She said that the 2018 Town Plan still hasn’t been completed. She said that during the next FY there will be funding that can support the completion of the Town Plan.

Mr. Barickman said this topic should be discussed at the next BOF meeting. He said that operationalizing the budgets should be a priority to support the Town in the long-run.

Chair Yonkers asked Mr. Barickman to inform the BOF moving forward about discussions concerning planning.

Mr. Mazzucco said that the budget process does not focus on structural changes and how to implement those. Mr. Barickman said that structural changes require time, direction, and focus.

Janis Meehan, Sherman Turnpike, asked about the school system and its budget, specifically about the presence of a long-term plan. Ms. Clark said this is the purview of the BOE. She said that the BOF can encourage the BOE to focus on this.

Mr. Mazzucco said the BOE and Region 9 should be invited to the next BOF meeting to discuss long-term planning and ways to address structural, as opposed to incremental, changes in the budget.

3. BOE PROCEDURAL AUDIT REVIEW – JOSPEH CENTOFANTI PKF

Chair Yonkers invited Joseph Centofanti to present to the BOF his findings.

Mr. Centofanti added updates to Pages 21-23 in the review of BOE procedures. He said that he found that the types of documentation that were being used for special services could be improved. He said best practices included proper reconciliation. He said this is consistent with other school districts he has worked with.

Mr. Dean asked for Mr. Centofanti to confirm that cost accounting and reporting were deficient for Redding and other school districts. Mr. Centofanti said this was correct.

Chair Yonkers said this is the first time this document has been shared with the public.

Chair Yonkers said the new Special Education Director could be instructed on best practices for cost accounting and reporting by Mr. Centofanti. Discussion followed concerning the findings of the report and how the BOF should respond to it.

Chair Yonkers asked Chair D’Agostino to encourage the Tri-Boards to adopt the best practices presented within the audit report. Chair D’Agostino said he will bring this to the attention of the Tri-Boards.

Chair Yonkers asked Mr. Gniadek who has received the audit report. Mr. Gniadek said the BOE, Scott Reiss, Dr. McMorran, and the BOF have received this document.

MOTION:
Mr. Mazzucco made a motion to approve the preliminary audit report, mark it as final, and post it on the Town website. Mr. Barickman seconded the motion. The vote was unanimous, and the motion was carried.

4. TAX COLLECTOR’S REPORT

Chair Yonkers invited Ms. Moisio to present her report.

Ms. Moisio said that at the end of March, 80 real estate parcels were in stages of payment. She said that as of today, 68 parcels are behind on current year taxes.

The Tax Sale went from 19 to 5 properties. Two properties have made partial payments and intend to pay off the tax debt. One property is a potential bankruptcy, one may be deeded to the Town, and one property is moving towards the sale.

The GLDC increased delta payment by $27,919.00 a month. The property taxes owed have reached $5,000,000.

Ms. Moisio said that the Town wants to collect the $80,000 annually in rent the GLDC collects from tenants on its property.

5. TREASURER’S REPORTS
Chair Yonkers invited Mr. Higgins to present his report.

The Town is running $1.2 million ahead of last year in balances.

The interest income is $55,000 ahead of budget year-to-date. This does not include treasury bills that will mature in June.

The Stone Castle account has $3 million invested. It has next-day liquidity.

There are 150 banks used by Stone Castle for investment.

Ms. Clark asked Mr. Higgins what other municipalities are using Stone Castle as an investment tool. Mr. Higgins said the Town of Fairfield and the State of CT are using it. Mr. Gniadek said that the Towns of Westport and Weston are currently participating.

6. FINANCE DIRECTOR’S REPORT

Chair Yonkers invited Mr. Gniadek to present his report.

The BOS will reallocate the $50,000 originally budgeted for the Consultants for Revitalize Redding. This money will be used to increase Registrar Salaries ($20,000), Legal funds ($15,000), Planning Part Time funds ($10,000), and Library funds ($5,000).

There are a variety of bills in front of the State Legislature that could have significant effect on the Town.

The April 30th Consensus Revenue Estimates will have a significant effect on towns, specifically concerning the implementation of various costs for towns.

A Motor Vehicle Tax would establish a statewide mill rate between 15 and 19 mills. This has not moved forward yet.

The Teacher’s Retirement Contribution could reappear as a new bill.

Legislation has been proposed to reduce the tax rate for Utilities on their real and personal property. This could reduce tax revenues in Redding by $1 million.

7. REPORTS FROM INDIVIDUAL BOARD MEMBERS AS ASSIGNED

Mr. Mazzucco said that Mr. Higgins suggested changes to the investment policy that will be discussed before the next BOF meeting.

8. CORRESPONDENCE AND ADMINISTRATIVE MATTERS

There were no correspondence and administrative matters addressed.

9. PUBLIC COMMENT

Peter Bonfanti, Umpawaug Road, said the BOF should visit the Redding Discussion group.

Chair Yonkers adjourned the meeting at 8:48PM.

Submitted by,
Zachary Smith

Accessibility Tools
hide