Weatherford Democrat

Aledo ExtrA

June 24, 2014

Willow Park upgrading financial policies

WEATHERFORD — By CHRISTIN COYNE

For the first time in the memory of city staff, the City of Willow Park has a written document outlining the city’s financial policies, one of a couple steps the city council took recently to improve its financial practices.

The council unanimously adopted the document June 10.

“The safety and transparency of [the] public’s funds are of the utmost importance to the city,” City Administrator Matt Shaffstall wrote in a memo to the council. “These financial policies were written to increase staff’s level of accountability in handling public funds.”

Prior to adoption, the city had policies that were inconsistent, unwritten and scattered in different locations, according to staff.

Staff wrote the policies to comply with state law, basing them on best practice guidelines from the Government Finance Officers Association and Governmment Treasurers Association of Texas, according to Shaffstall.

The document covers a variety of areas, from requiring that an annual audit be presented to the council by the auditing firm to setting a fund balance policy.

“Essentially this financial policy does a couple things,” Shaffstall said. “It sets some goals in how we should be managing our money and how we should lay it out and tries to take it across the board from where do we keep our money [to] how much should we be keeping.”

The policy states that the city should set a target of a 90-day fund balance in accounts and sets triggers if it dips below that, the city administrator said.

If a fund dips below the 75-day mark, the city administrator must notify the council.

“At the same time it also says you shouldn’t have too much money, which right now is an issue,” Shaffstall said, adding that the city only needs a 90-day operating balance and currently has a 200-day balance, something the council is expected to address during the budget process later this summer.

If the city has more fund balance than the maximum, the policy lays out how that should be handled, he said. The guidelines describe when excess monies in one area should be transferred into cash reserves, investments or the city’s capital improvement account or another account.

It may be better to put money into streets rather than holding it in cash, he said.

Investment policy

The council also adopted an investment policy that brought it up to date with the Public Funds Investment Act.

Additions to the former policy include statements relating to investment parameters, requirements to be an approved broker.

Audit

The council also received a report from Daniel Hungerford of George, Morgan & Sneed, P.C., which performed the annual audit of the city’s books.

“In the report, we have an unmodified, clean opinion,” Hungerford said.

The auditors did have three findings in the report on internal control and compliance and issued a management letter with six opportunities to strengthen the city’s internal control, according to Hungerford.

The audit, performed by a different company than the one used by the city in prior years, was a significant improvement over what the city has had in the past, Mayor Richard Neverdousky said.

“We really enjoyed working together because it forced the city to tighten up a couple of things and improve its recordkeeping and, also, force us to kind of start looking into some areas that we hadn’t looked into,” Shaffstall said, adding that it was a good process all-around for the city to go through.

 

1
Text Only
Aledo ExtrA
  • 0725 one arson.JPG Suspicious house fire under investigation

    The Weatherford fire marshal says a fire that damaged a house and killed two puppies Wednesday night is being investigated as a suspicious fire and a suspect is in jail on unrelated charges.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • CPS data.jpg Case overload

    Parker County Attorney John Forrest will ask county commissioners for additional funds as county budget discussions begin this year; he hopes to hire another attorney to help with an increase in Child Protective Services cases.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Richard Adams Sr. Firefighter arrested on child sex assault charges

    A volunteer Hudson Oaks firefighter is in the Parker County Jail on charges he repeatedly sexually assaulted two young relatives over a several year period. 

    Richard Frederick Adams Sr., 62, arrested Monday, faces two charges of continuous sexual abuse of a child under 14, a first-degree felony.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Developer withdraws site plan

    ANNETTA —A controversial 34-home subdivision proposed for a 41-acre tract on Duncan Road will not go forward as planned, according to action taken by both the proposed developer and the Annetta Town Council after a public hearing Thursday night.

    July 22, 2014

  • Aledo City Council to meet July 24

    The Aledo City Council will meet at 7 p.m. Thursday, July 24, in the Aledo Community Center, 104 Robinson Court, Aledo.

    July 22, 2014

  • oak leaf ladder shot.jpg Fires damage business, home

    Two separate fires around 2 p.m. July 15 damaged a Willow Park business and destroyed the home of a Weatherford family.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Letter to the Editor

    Dear Editor,
     Thursday night, July 17, I was present for a surprisingly interesting experience when State Representative candidate Matthew Britt addressed a small group of supporters, followed by a question and answer session.

    July 22, 2014

  • ESD 1, Annetta South close on fire station site

    Parker County Emergency Services District No. 1 and Annetta South officials said Tuesday that the ESD is homing in on a site for a new fire station to serve residents in the Annettas and surrounding areas. Annetta South is expected to consider a zoning change to accommodate a new station next month.

    July 22, 2014

  • Registration has begun for Aledo ISD

    Aledo ISD enrollment for the 2014-15 school year began yesterday, July 21, and students new to the district need to register before school begins, Monday, Aug. 25.

    July 22, 2014

  • County scrambling to fill elections post

    Former Parker County Assistant Elections Administrator Laura Watkins, who sought, but was not appointed to the post of Parker County Elections Administrator after Robert Parten retired, last week began work as assistant elections administrator for Palo Pinto County, Palo Pinto County Elections Administrator Judith Evans has confirmed.

    July 22, 2014

Must Read
House Ads
Top News
AP Video
Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming 13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow Raw: Deadly Tornado Hits Virginia Campground Ohio State Marching Band Chief Fired After Probe Raw: Big Rig Stuck in Illinois Swamp