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DeKalb County Finance Committee Minutes
May 01, 2013
7 p.m.

PRINTABLE DOCUMENT (.pdf)

 

DRAFT

 

The Finance Committee of the DeKalb County Board met on Wednesday, May 1, 2013, @ 7:00p.m. in the Administration Building's Conference Room East. Chairman Stephen Reid called the meeting to order. Members present were Anthony Cvek, Charles Foster, Julia Fullerton, Paul Stoddard, and Ruth Anne Tobias. Ms. Haji-Sheikh was absent. Mr. Gary Hanson, Jim Scheffers, Peter Stefan and Joan Hanson were also present.

 

APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES
It was moved by Mr. Stoddard, seconded by Mr. Cvek, and it was carried unanimously to approve the minutes from February 6, 2013.


It was moved by Ms. Tobias, seconded by Ms. Fullerton, and it was carried unanimously to approve the minutes from February 20, 2013.


It was moved by Ms. Fullerton, seconded by Mr. Stoddard, and it was carried unanimously to approve the minutes from March 20, 2013.

 

APPROVAL OF THE AGENDA
Mr. Cvek asked to amend the agenda to include discussion on a hiring policy and as it relates to budget flexibility. Chairman Reid said that he would place it as item # 9 on the agenda.
It was moved by Mr. Cvek, seconded by Mr. Foster, and it was carried unanimously to approve the amended agenda.

 

EVERGREEN VILLAGE GRANT FUNDING
Mr. Gary Hanson, DeKalb County Administrator, said that we have federal and state monies projected at $5.4 million to mitigate the Evergreen Village Mobile Home Park. He said that there are three components to the grant. The first one is that we would buy the land, then we would buy all the trailers, and third we would relocate the residents. That relocation is that - we find them appropriate housing for their family in a certain radius. We would subsidize that for up to 42 months at the difference of what they are currently paying and what it will cost for wherever they go. Under the federal rules, which are applicable in this case, each family can get up to $22,500 in relocation assistance. The budget only realized $12,000 per family for relocation assistance. We are potentially $1.5 million short if everybody needed the maximum amount of money. Mr. Paul Miller started coordinating efforts with IEMA and Representative Pritchard helped contact someone at the Department of Commerce and Economic Development to free up some money to help with the shortfall. We think that all of the money has been identified. We did receive a letter of promise from the Director that they do have nearly $638,000 and it appears that we will be okay. There is a slight risk factor that if everything falls apart we may be at risk for some of this money. This item did go to the Planning and Zoning Committee because this project is being handled out of that committee and he brought it to the Finance Committee because of the financial risk here. We are asking for a board resolution so that everyone understands this.

 

Mr. Cvek asked about the numbers that have been put together for the per unit price, does that factor in which ones are abandoned, which ones the owner owns, etc.

 

Mr. Hanson said not at this point, right now we are looking at the total number of units which is 129 times the $22,500.00.

 

Mr. Cvek then asked, if we don't get the $1.5 million, does the County need to come up with that money and from where?

 

Mr. Hanson said one option would be from the Opportunity Fund.

 

It was moved by Ms. Tobias, seconded by Mr. Stoddard, and it was carried unanimously by the committee to show support to the Planning and Zoning Committee for Resolution #R2013-36.

 

POLICY REGARDING CONDUCTING PUBLIC HEARINGS FOR CAPITAL PROJECTS OF $10,000,000+
Mr. Peter Stefan, Finance Director, said that this item came out of a prior Finance Committee meeting to take a look at this item. Is this something that the committee wants to move forward on and if so, he and Mr. Hanson have outlined some of the discussion points that we need to address in order to develop this policy.


Chairman Reid said that his initial concern was wondering what kind of legal implications this would have and was wondering if we could have staff review it and address some of the concerns.


Mr. Stefan said that he did not know if we had received legal advice, but all of the required public hearings would be undertaken. This would, it is his understanding, would be in addition just to get public input if it is not required beyond those legal requirements.
Mr. Hanson said that a proposed new facility will be subject to a public hearing.


Mr. Stoddard said that he's always for giving the public more say, but if the only purpose of this is to go back and revisit the jail, then he is dead set against it. He does not feel that we need to fix it.


Chairman Reid said, so can we put this item to"bed."


The committee said yes.


POLICY REGARDING THE AWARD OF CONTRACTS
Mr. Stefan shared a handout with the committee on certain agenda items. He said that for the policy regarding the award of contracts we would like to have an open process to all qualified vendors who provide the best value for the desired County contract and try to balance the oversight responsibility of the committee of the board with the needs of a department. Under the requirements section we are proposing that the contracts not go beyond 3 years and multi-year contracts should either have a termination clause for non-funding in future budgets or should be subject to a revenue source that does not need to be renewed. Contracts that would go before the County Board would be those that exceed $250,000. An annual listing of the contracts was submitted to the county board last year. The County's current purchasing policy has a $20,000 limit in there.

 

Also, Mr. Stefan mentioned that under the Applicability section of the Contract Awards Policy, the first two items would be required to go before the county board for approval. Any contract for direct communication to the board or for new construction or alteration of a building would go before the board, please see this attachment to these minutes. The third part of the policy would be the definitions of professional services, commercial services, and maintenance agreements.

 

Ms. Fullerton said that one thing that she was suggesting was that we could add that"contracts should be approved prior to the delivery of the goods or services." When we are talking about the county board approving the contract, what are they approving

actually?

 

Mr. Hanson said that usually you will authorize staff to work out the specific details of the contract, but it is approved by the board.

 

Mr. Cvek said that the $250,000 threshold seemed high.

 

Mr. Foster asked if the committees could get a summary of bids.

 

After further discussion, it was agreed to table this item and to bring it back at the next meeting.

 

Mr. Hanson requested that Committee members forward any additional comments they have to Mr. Stefan prior to the next meeting for inclusion in the draft of the updated policy.

 

FINANCE OFFICE TRANSITION ITEMS
Mr. Stefan said that IMRF does require an authorized agent to be appointed and it is currently Mr. Hanson. They will require a resolution if there will be a change made to include Mr. Stefan as the newly appointed agent by the county board. One resolution is for the County and the other is for the Forest Preserve District.

 

It was moved by Mr. Foster, seconded by Mr. Cvek, and it was carried unanimously to forward Resolution #R2013-38 for the County's new authorized agent to IMRF to the full board for approval.


And, it was moved by Mr. Foster, seconded by Mr. Cvek, and it was carried unanimously by the committee to show support to the Forest Preserve Committee for Resolution #R2013-39 for the Forest Preserve's new authorized agent to IMRF.


Mr. Hanson said that he would like to publicly thank the Finance Department staff for their work over the past four and a half months and stepping up. The savings over that transition was over $56,000. He would like to ask the committee to recognize the Finance Department staff and give each of them a $2500 bonus.


Chairman Reid asked if this is unprecedented.


Mr. Hanson said, no it is not unusual for a department head to reward a person in their department who has stepped up. It is unusual for a whole department to get one but this was an unusual transition.


Mr. Cvek said he agrees with the recognition but he has a concern with the dollar amount. Is it possible to recognize their performance with additional paid time off instead?


Mr. Hanson said that due to the seniority of the Finance Department staff, they have a good amount of time off already and awarding more time off may create scheduling difficulties in the department.

 

It was moved by Ms. Fullerton, seconded by Mr. Stoddard, and it was carried to award a $2500 bonus to each Finance Department staff member by a roll call vote. There were 5 yes votes and 1 no vote, which was Mr. Cvek.

 

ANNUAL IMO UPDATE – MS. JOAN HANSON
Ms. Hanson, Information Management Office Director, (IMO) made a presentation to the committee regarding her Annual Report.


She said that she has eight staff members that work for her. They support 500 users for the voice and data network on the DeKalb and Sycamore Campuses and at the Highway Department. IMO responds to nearly 1,000 requests per month. The tasks vary in complexity from comprehensive network architecture planning and implementation and database development, to one-on-one resolution of individual use needs. IMO staff approach tasks at both ends of the complexity spectrum with equal seriousness of purpose. IMO staff understand that other departments depend on IMO to function on a day-to-day basis. (Please see her report attached to these minutes.)


Some of the highlights that Ms. Hanson mentioned are as follows. She mentioned that Geographic Information Systems (G.I.S.) and IMO were able to establish mobile tablets in squad cars for the Sheriff's Department. She said that there are many new displays in the courtrooms. There is the new Jury Assembly room where there is a large TV in the room that provides training for the jurors.


Ms. Hanson also mentioned that the County has updated their website with the help of the Webmaster, Lisa Sanderson.


Ms. Hanson said that their goal is to excel at customer service.


Mr. Foster said that he wanted to commend her and her staff for the County's new website.


The committee thanked Ms. Hanson for her report.

 

HIRING POLICY
Mr. Cvek said we talked about in the past with Gary about the employee costs being one of our biggest costs, along with insurance costs, how do we get better control of that number and have a greater role in the decision process. With the financial realities that we will be faced with for next year's budget maybe we could look at having more involvement in the hiring process. Mr. Cvek said that maybe we could take a slower way of filling that position like the Finance Department did and they did save money.
No action was taken in regards to this item.

 

ADJOURNMENT
It was moved by Ms. Tobias, seconded by Ms. Fullerton, and it was carried unanimously to adjourn the meeting.
Respectively submitted,

____________________________________
Stephen Reid, Chairman
________________________________________
Mary C. Supple, Secretary