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THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
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Peshtigo Committee Okays $1,516,849 Non-Lapsing Funds

Issue Date: February 14, 2019

At its meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 12, the City of Peshtigo's Finance and Claims Committee got the good news that payments on all UDAG and Revolving Loan Fund accounts are current except that of Faucett Forest Products, for which the city received a check from a Sheriff's Sale last September.

In closed session near the end of the meeting the committee discussed the Faucett Forest Products judgment and agreed to bring a recommendation to Council in March, with a provision for revisiting it in six months.

As of Monday, Feb. 11, current balances on all Revolving Loan Fund loans totaled $229,354.88, and the balance on UDAG loans totaled $2,321,590.78. In addition, as of Monday, Feb. . 11 the RLF had a cash balance of $327,025.34 and UDAG had a cash balance of $124,878.41 plus $1,100,000 in certificates of deposit.

As its last item of business for the day the committee went into closed session for a discussion on he Faucett Forest Products judgment. After returning to open session they approved a motion to recommend that the full City Council accept payments on the Faucett Forest Products loan on the terms discussed during the closed session.

Those terms will go to Council for approval at its meeting on Tuesday, March 5, and are to be revisited after six months, because committee members agreed to have another discussion on the subject at its August meeting so it can go to Council in September.

Present for the meeting were Committee members Mike Behnke, Jillian Schutte and Chair Brigitte Schmidt, along with Mayor Cathi Malke, City Attorney Dave Spangenberg, Police Chief Rick Badgley, Public Works Director George Cowell, and Assistant Clerk/Treasurer Anita Morois.

Morois said there was nothing unusual on the schedule of appropriations entries, and it was approved without comment. Cowell explained he had not budgeted for the $844 cost of putting "drops" for electrical connections for Christmas decorations on four wooden poles, and this expense was added to the tally for Christmas decorations.

Schutte wondered if there was a reason Olsen Electric, the contractor who put in the drops had not specified how many hours were involved. Cowell said the bill was on a per job basis, and he had been there a couple of times, working at the top of the poles from a bucket. He added that Olsen has been very good to the city over the years, but agreed to get more information for the next committee meeting. Behnke suggested they should at least get a breakdown of time and materials.

Morois provided committee members with what she described as a very preliminary and incomplete expenditures report that she is working on in preparation for the upcoming 2018 audit.

Next came approval of a list of transfers from one account to another within individual 2018 department budgets which is normally done to balance accounts before audit time each year.

In addition to several very small transfers the changes included $235.22 to Community Center labor from from forestry wages and labor; $525.12 to storm sewer maintenance, $342.76 to solid waste recycling, $914.54 for street and alley maintenance and $972.91 to regular holiday decorations (mostly new arms for the Hometown Hero Banners), all from regular street and snow plowing maintenance account, and $3,565.61 to street construction from forestry wages and labor.There were related transfers to move the Social Security portion of those expenses from one part to another within the Public Works budget.

Other transfers were $210.70 to ball diamonds from wages for machinery and equipment mechanic, a total of $4,408.74 within the police budget, mainly to change shift differential pay for the lieutenant and patrolman positions, and $1,877.75 from the per-meeting pay allocated for firemen to pay per fire pay for the firemen. Total of transfers approved was $13,981.61.

A total of $1,515,849 was approved as non-lapsing funds. Some of this is for ongoing accounts, for example $515,692 in the Capital Improvement Fund, $176,690 in the Contingency TIF transfer account, $165,204 set aside for construction of the fish viewing platform, and $211,905 in JT funds for street construction.

Other money carried over was budgeted for projects expected to be done in 2018 but carried over to 2019, along with the money to pay for them.

Morois explained there had been $564 to carry over from the accounting supplies budget, but then just this week two printers had broken and that carried over money was used to pay the replacement cost of just over $400.

Chief Badgley was asked about the cost of repairs to one of the squad cars, He said the repairs were $5,000, and he has budgeted $10,000 for maintenance so he's okay for now.


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