Dunkirk receives outside auditors’ report on 2013

The city of Dunkirk’s Finance Committee received the reports of its 2013 audit at its meeting Monday. The audit was performed by Johnson, Mackowiak and Associates. Kevin Wystup and Scott Dill from JMA presented the audit to the committee and the pair only brought up a few minor issues.

Wystup said in 2013 the wastewater and water funds both had revenue losses. According to the audit, the wastewater fund lost about $51,000 and the water fund lost $150,000. The revenue loss resulted from a decrease in user charges, mainly Carriage House. That loss should not be reflected in the current 2014 budget, however.

“That loss between water and wastewater has been factored into this year’s budget for projected revenue. We didn’t know it for 2013 but in preparation for this year’s budget those revenues were reduced because of the loss mainly because of Carriage House. We will not have that deficit. … The way it looks right now we should not have that same deficit,” City Treasurer Mark Woods said.

To generate some revenue for the wastewater fund, the minimum charge has increased from $22.50 to $45 and was recently reflected on the quarterly bills. According to Woods, the city will not further increase rates and there are no scheduled rate increases in the future.

Other recommendations made by JMA were to have a written procedure and policy for the Community Development Block Grant program and the audit noted there is not immediate reconciliation on utility bills. Woods explained since utility bills go out at the end of the month, any adjustments made to bills are in the next billing cycle. Woods said his department tries to get to everything but they are simply short staffed. Dunkirk Common Council did approve to hire another employee for the department but that position has yet to be filled.

Wystup also said the police and fire department budgets were over budget. Personnel overtime for the fire department and several retirements within the police department caused the two departments to be over budget.

The finance committee will meet again in two weeks at city hall.

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