Auditor to City Council: ‘Keep up the good work’

 
The message from Tom Olinger of Abdo, Eick & Meyers LLP came through loud and clear at the Monday, July 1 meeting of the Montgomery City Council. 
 
During his report on the 2012 audit, which indicated a greatly improved financial standing for city operations, he encouraged the council, administration and staff to “Keep up the good work, the city’s financial plan is definitely working.”
 
Olinger made some suggestions for minor changes in the city’s financial reporting, such as keeping quotes between $25 and $100 on file, but overall his report was very positive. He encouraged the city staff to “Keep moving forward—you are two years ahead of schedule and doing a good job.”
 
Olinger said the fund balance increased by $370,000 in the past year, bringing it up to 15 percent of the budget. The state auditors have a suggested goal of 40 percent.
 
The city was operating with a negative fund balance of more than $600,000  only six years ago. The deficit has now been replaced by a positive balance.
 
City Administrator Steve Helget joined the council in being extremely pleased with the audit report. “We are definitely on track with our five-year financial plan, and by 2016 we should be where we want to be,” he predicted. He added that the estimated increase in Local Government Aid (LGA) for next year is about $100,000.
Helget also said a good balance is being built up in the HUD account (Park Manor), and the authority is looking forward to building another 11 units in the future.
 
The council also:
—Rescheduled the regular meeting of Monday, July 15, to Thursday, July 18, because of conflicts.
 
—Awarded the wastewater treatment facility clarifier repair project to Rice Lake Construction Group for $49,600. The project will be covered by the city’s insurance policy minus the $100,000 deductible.
 
—Heard report from Helget that Montgomery is on the list for the 2014 state bonding bill, the application including the proposed public safety facility. Council also agreed by consensus to move ahead  with inviting state elected officials to tour the existing fire and ambulance service building, and present concept plan for new facility.
 
—Adopted an ordinance amending residential rental code to enable the city to prosecute individuals who do not comply with the inspection requirement.