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 Commission finds City out of Fiscal Emergency
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John Beagle
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Posted - 12/28/2006 :  09:14:58 AM  Show Profile  Visit John Beagle's Homepage  Reply with Quote Report Abuse

The Financial Planning and Supervision Commission (the Commission) for the City of Monroe requests that the Auditor of State conduct an analysis to determine whether the conditions exist to release the city from a state of fiscal emergency and to terminate the Commission.

At its meeting on December 27, 2006, the Commission voted unanimously to make this request by adopting resolution 2006-1. The Commission believes that the City of Monroe can now manage itself without further assistance from the Commission.

Commission members are:
Paul Marshall, Office of Budget and Management, also commission chair
Virgil Maines, Monroe Resident
John Beagle, Monroe Resident
Peter Dame, Monroe Resident
Bill Brock, City Manager and mayoral designee
Suzi Rubin, City Council Member and designated Commission member
Jake Wozniak, Office of the Treasurer of State

Non members also in attendance were:
Dave Thompson, Office of Auditor of State and Financial Supervisor for the City of Monroe
Anna Mary Thomas, Office of Auditor of State

"I don’t know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody" #BillCosby

Doc
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Posted - 12/28/2006 :  09:32:18 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote Report Abuse

Has this request ever been made before?

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John Beagle
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Posted - 12/28/2006 :  09:39:56 AM  Show Profile  Visit John Beagle's Homepage  Reply with Quote Report Abuse

No, this is the first request.
Now it's in the states hands. We could be out officially in 2 to 6 months.

"I don’t know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody" #BillCosby
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Suzi Rubin
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Posted - 12/28/2006 :  12:56:05 PM  Show Profile  Visit Suzi Rubin's Homepage  Reply with Quote Report Abuse

quote:
[i]Originally posted by burningiris[/i]
[br]Has this request ever been made before?


The request is being made at this time because we have cleared up the deficit accounts. The Commission Chair (Paul Marshall) has been very impressed with the short amount of time it has taken the City to come out of fiscal emergency. Most cities are in 8-10 years before they recover. Ours was less than three.

Kudos to our all our city employees for keeping the city running smoothly with short staff. Bill Brock (City Manager) particularly has worn many hats during this time, including Finance Director, Development Director, City Engineer and City Manager. Administrative and public works employees have also pitched in to cover positions that have been left unfilled. All of the firefighters and police have been working above and beyond by keeping us safe with less than adequate staffing. And they've been doing all this under a pay freeze for several years. I'm grateful to have such dedicated people working for Monroe.

The citizens deserve credit too for passing the tax levy last spring. Without it, we would still be in fiscal emergency for at least two more years.

The city has a lot of road work and maintenance to do to try to catch up. We will see some of that work begin next year. Additional police and fire personnel are in the budget next year to bring us closer to recommended levels.

Happy New Year!

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Bretland
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Posted - 12/28/2006 :  1:13:41 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote Report Abuse

For the sake of review:
1) how many accounts are monitored in deciding whether or not a
city is in fiscal emergency?
2) how many of those accounts were not sufficiently funded? How many
were sufficiently funded?
3) what was the overall negative position of the city? For example:
were we $100,000 in the red, $500,000, $10,000,000, etc.
4) what kind of reserves does the city strive to maintain?

Thanks,

Bob

"There are 10 types of people in this world. Those who understand binary, and those that don't."
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Doc
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Posted - 12/28/2006 :  1:23:29 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote Report Abuse

Excellent questions, Bob.

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Suzi Rubin
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Posted - 12/28/2006 :  6:48:57 PM  Show Profile  Visit Suzi Rubin's Homepage  Reply with Quote Report Abuse

quote:
[i]Originally posted by Bretland[/i]
[br]For the sake of review:
1) how many accounts are monitored in deciding whether or not a
city is in fiscal emergency?
2) how many of those accounts were not sufficiently funded? How many
were sufficiently funded?
3) what was the overall negative position of the city? For example:
were we $100,000 in the red, $500,000, $10,000,000, etc.
4) what kind of reserves does the city strive to maintain?



1) All of them - if you like I can get an exact count. Let me know.
2 & 3) Originally, we had eleven funds in deficit totalling $6.2 million going into emergency. About $3.5 million of that was in purchase orders that were never completed, so the real number is around $3 million.
4) We discussed this at the Commission meeting on Wednesday. There is no hard and fast rule, but we should be around $2-3 million to cover cash flow and rainy day. Finance Committee will be working to set a goal for this during the coming months.
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Bob Kelley
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Posted - 12/28/2006 :  9:15:12 PM  Show Profile  Send Bob Kelley an AOL message  Send Bob Kelley a Yahoo! Message  Reply with Quote Report Abuse

The general rule of thumb is 6 months of operating cash. Our 2007 budget will be inflated slightly by the 63 project. The budget would say we should carry 4 million in reserve but I think Suzi's number of 3 million is really the right number. If we hold tight to our budget we could end next year with over a million in reserve but we will still receive a citation on our next review due to our low cash balance. The only way to stop that would be to stop all extra services for another couple years to get our balance up. As long as future councils don't go crazy spending we should be able to reach our target goal in a few years and still get services back to normal. I think it's worth the citations for a few years and in the long run I think the City will be better off.

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Ragin Cajun
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Posted - 12/28/2006 :  11:56:02 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote Report Abuse

I see were adding one person to the street dept. What is the Pay rate for that position?

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Bob Kelley
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Posted - 12/29/2006 :  12:27:58 AM  Show Profile  Send Bob Kelley an AOL message  Send Bob Kelley a Yahoo! Message  Reply with Quote Report Abuse

I don't have it handy but I will get it for you.

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Bretland
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Posted - 12/29/2006 :  10:13:48 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote Report Abuse

Bob and Suzi,

Thanks for the review. I appreciate it.

Bob B

"There are 10 types of people in this world. Those who understand binary, and those that don't."
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Bob Kelley
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Posted - 12/29/2006 :  2:00:40 PM  Show Profile  Send Bob Kelley an AOL message  Send Bob Kelley a Yahoo! Message  Reply with Quote Report Abuse

quote:
[i]Originally posted by Ragin Cajun[/i]
[br]I see were adding one person to the street dept. What is the Pay rate for that position?

Per the contract $14.43 per hr.

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Ragin Cajun
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Posted - 12/30/2006 :  7:56:00 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote Report Abuse

Gotcha Thanx Bob. Hiring starts when???

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