Agenda Pack For 1-13-2015 City Council Meeting.

If you would like to see what’s up for the next City Council meeting of Dearborn Heights click on the link below. Interesting in the Cover letter there is something for Charter Revisions.

City Council Meeting Agenda Pack for 1-13-2015 

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11 thoughts on “Agenda Pack For 1-13-2015 City Council Meeting.”

  1. Eyes Wide Open , January 15, 2015 at 11:21 pm, Do you know why Dearborn Heights is self insured? ist only for flood? or for all liabilities?

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  2. Observer – In the instance of the flooding, Dearborn Heights cannot be compared to Dearborn. The city and the county both were warned via several studies from 2005 through 2011 and most detailed in the 2008 Spicer Group study in which 8 detailed plans were proposed to fix the problem and one was detailed with a 4 phase implementation plan. The price tag was looked down upon and other delays and studies were embarked upon to delay the fix. In the mean time the county has allowed the development and dumping into the drain to increase to the point where it is fully out of control. Sewage being dumped at will, developments of all kinds, roads, parking lots, etc just tied into tributaries or directly into the NBECD at will. In the mean time, DH became self insured, even becoming “non-FEMA” compliant in December of 2013 and then getting re-instated in late January of 2014. The city is paid by all residents, for getting water to the homes and removing the water. The city failed to do that and had plenty of warning that this condition existed and did not act in the best interest of the tax paying residents in preventing this. Therefore, this is not a flood claim hypothesis and speculations floating on thin air, as you have suggested. Rather this is clearly a culpable city that needs to compensate the residents for all losses and expenditures caused by the cities negligence. Now the city may have a case with the county but the residents pay the city and therefore the city alone is culpable. Back to my question – Where will the money come from? Every DH resident should be asking this question because it is a city wide issue.

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  3. Eyes Wide Open, January 14, 2015 at 10:13 pm, Log on Dearborn Heights website and look for the 2014-15 general fund adopted budget open the documents pdf file. Check the numbers and analyze them, you may find your answers. Estimations and forecasting are financial instruments, facts are accounting principles.
    According to what the city official stated during 1/13/2015 council meeting, no decision is made yet about the August 11, 2014 flood claims. Don’t know what self insured means and don’t know which fund will be used if there are flood claims to be paid.
    But, the city council can authorize inner-borrowing between city funds, the same way they did in the past. Your entire flood claims hypothesis is speculations floating on thin air at this time. I heard Dearborn decline the responsibility for the August 11, 2014 flood claims. Not sure if all the claims are denied or portion of them.
    Please note that the city general fund is in the black according to the 2013-14 and 2014-15 estimated budget figures.
    Also, please note that the council approved a payment to the Michigan Municipal Risk Management Authority Insurance in the amount of $ 411,028.25. Not sure what this payment cover and not sure if this an annual/semi-annual/quarterly/or monthly, just reporting the facts as stated in the council approved minutes for December 9, 2014 council meeting.

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  4. Observer if your numbers are correct that means that the city truly is in trouble because there is a huge expenditure that was not captured in the budget. Self Insurance for the flood. That should be coming out of the General Fund. Correct?
    If that is the case let’s do the math. Let’s just say there is 1000 claims to the city for the 8/11 flood. Let’s say that the average claim would be 5,000 ( some to be much higher but average 5000). That is 5 million dollars. There is nothing else to override. Unless there is a fund set up for Self Insurance that we do not know about, the city is going to have to take out a loan to compensate for the flood. How will that work?

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  5. drheights48127 , January 11, 2015 at 4:25 pm, Please review the 2014-2015 general fund budget document on page 3, that page showing the estemated general fund balance is in the black with over couple millions, but at the same time showing the estemated general fund balance reserve is negative (in the red for about 130K) those numbers are an estimate for june 30, 2015.

    is the city general fund in the blak or in the red or what? I guss the general fund reserve must be at $2,439,180.00 before its in the black. Good accounting way of showing that we still needs the properties tax increese revenues even when we done paying the city general fund deficit.

    The properties tax increase was approved by the voters to pay the deficit and save the city from been taken over by the state and avoid decreasing the city sevices.

    (As was explanned in 2011 by the city government officils when asked the voters for the increse), the tax increase was not inteded to increase city expendutures. The same document on page 3 of 2014-15 general fund budget showing an estemated expendutures increase of $1,867,493.00 between in 2014-15 general fund budget over 2013-14. (2014-15 estimated expendetures of:$40,926,137.00 – 2013-14 estemated expendetures of: $39,058.,644.00). That an estemated 4.8% increase in one year.

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  6. Observer you make some pretty interesting comments.
    After all of your comments and info, if accurate, I am left wondering: WHERE IS THE MONEY COMING FROM FOR ALL OF THE FLOOD CALIMS?

    I have heard a rumor that the “self-insured” city has no intentions of honoring the flood claims since, as your info has suggested, there is already a financial crisis. If one department cannot pay a loan from another, that rumor could be believable.

    All of the delays, diversions (useless meetings, etc) and un-answered questions pertaining to the status of the claims, lends additional credence to the rumor.

    Interesting things to ponder and hopefully act upon in 2015 and beyond

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  7. Knock Knock , January 10, 2015 at 7:47 pm; Usually, Charter …………”city layer”, sorry for the typo, it should be “city lawyer”
    No active window ABC corrections for the blog’s comments.

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  8. Knock Knock , January 10, 2015 at 7:47 pm; Usually, Charter revisions are done by few city council members as committee, and then the committee recommends the proposed amendments to the full body for discussion and final draft of the amendments.

    The chairman asks the city lawyer to review the amendments and present the proposed charter amendments as a resolution on the city council agenda for up/down vote. If approved and the mayor didn’t veto the approved resolution, thereafter the proposed amendments will be on the ballet for Dearborn Heights voter.

    The council can also approve a special city election specifically for the charters amendments and authorize the city clerk to conduct the election and allocate additional funding to the clerk office to cover the special election.

    The last time the city council approved a ballet proposal was in 2011 for properties tax increase to cover the “$5 millions” general fund deficit, after the council kept approving budgets that included millions of borrowed funds from other city funds that needs to be paid back (about $5 millions) and depleting a surplus general fund balance of about $5millions.

    The council didn’t reduce enough the spending to match the reduction of revenues caused by the financial meltdown of 2008. The city council had the opportunity to gradually use the $5 million general fund balance surpluss to cover the spending reduction and try to stabilize/balance the city budget based on the reduced revenues before asking for additional taxes. One council member was heard during a budget voting saying” It’s a fantasy budget” but voting yes to approve that budget anyway.

    To be fair, Dearborn Heights city council are part-time officials and may needs professional and certified specialist assistance during those difficult times, therefore they could’ve asked an “external auditor firm” for an analysis of the sustainability of city administration proposed budgets after 2008 financial meltdown and reduction of revenues then review and consider their evaluations and recommendations about proposed revenues and expenditures.

    In 2011 the tax increase was approved by Dearborn Heights voters after been told if the ballot fail, the city may end up under a state financial manager and city services will cut significantly. The tax increase will generate approximately $3 millions per year and will increase or decrease based on properties taxable values.

    3 fiscal years passed since 2011 and about $9 millions of additional revenues should’ve been generated and should be adequet to pay-off the borrowd loans (the deficit).

    Hopping the majority of city council soon approve a ballot proposal to reduce properties tax after paying the borrowed funds. Also hopping the majority of city council will not approve any more “fantasy budgets” to avoid asking again for properties tax increase.

    Hopping the state will requires all municipalities to get approval for internal funds-borrowing from the state treasury department before making any inner-borrowing financial transaction. The state treasury will be able to determine wither the borrowing is for cash-flow purpose and will be paid by the end of the fiscal year, or the borrowing is not sustainable according to the municipality financial record, forcing the municipality to reduce spending and balance its budget.

    For more information about municipal accounting and financial management you can review among other professional websites the following website:

    http://www.municipalconsultants.net/enterprise_fund_accounting_systems.aspx

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