Supervisors hear favorable report from Fiscal-Year 2022 financial audit

by Joe Moses

The Allamakee County Board of Supervisors met in regular session Monday, March 20 to address a full agenda of matters including the review of the Fiscal-Year 2022 (FY22) Allamakee County Financial Audit, consideration of signing agreements relating to updated voting equipment, and review of the Post-Election Audit Report for the March 7 Special Election in Postville regarding a Hotel/Motel Tax.

The meeting was called to order by Board of Supervisors Chairperson Dan Byrnes with Supervisors Mark Reiser and Dennis Keatley in attendance. There was no Public Comment during the time allotted for that agenda item.

The meeting moved into the review of the Fiscal-Year 2022 (FY22) Allamakee County Financial Audit with Certified Public Accountant (CPA) Neil Schraeder of Hacker, Nelson & Co. P.C. providing an overview of the audit results and process. Schraeder thanked Allamakee County Auditor Denise Beyer and the Auditor’s office staff for their assistance and cooperation in this process, which he advised went well.

Schraeder noted that Allamakee County was in compliance and within guidelines relating to the revenue and expenditures associated with the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding. He also discussed the carryover of ARPA expenditures into Fiscal-Year 2023 (FY23) with compliance reporting to continue. Schraeder noted that the County Auditor’s office has done well relating to the segregation of duties with this being a small office benefiting from the cross-training of staff.

Keatley and Schraeder discussed the Iowa Public Employees’ Retirement System (IPERS), and Beyer and Schraeder discussed the portion of the audit report providing a 10-year history of revenue and expenses. Schraeder also discussed the impact of inflation relating to wages and equipment costs with equipment purchases still experiencing delivery delays. No action was taken by the Supervisors relating to this informational matter.

The meeting moved into the consideration of approving and signing the Henry M. Adkins & Son, Inc. purchase, license and maintenance agreements relating to updated voting equipment. Beyer advised that approval to move forward with signatures from the Board of Supervisors is necessary for the purchase, license and maintenance agreements relating to this required voting equipment upgrade. The Supervisors approved to sign the agreements as recommended.

Beyer also addressed the next matter relating to the review of the Post-Election Audit Report for the March 7, 2023 Special Election relating to the Motel/Hotel Tax in Postville. Beyer noted that the absentee ballot portion of the election was chosen by the Iowa Secretary of State’s Office at random for the post-election audit, and she also advised that zero absentee ballots were received with zero absentee ballots being certified as part of this process. Byrnes noted that he would be providing the signature on behalf of the Board of Supervisors. No official action was required relating to this matter.

The meeting moved into the discussion and consideration of moving the July 3 Board of Supervisors meeting to July 5. Beyer discussed her suggestion to move the regularly scheduled July 3 Supervisors meeting date to July 5 due to the scheduling of meetings at the end of June regarding the 2022 Fiscal-Year, as is common practice with the end of a fiscal year. Beyer noted that the Supervisors will have their regularly scheduled meeting Monday, June 26 with their end of Fiscal Year 2022 meeting taking place Friday, June 30.

Beyer further advised that the suggested alternate Wednesday, July 5 meeting date would provide some separation rather than having a cluster of meeting dates, with Monday, July 3 being before the Independence Day holiday. The Supervisors discussed the alternate Wednesday, July 5 meeting date with the consensus of the Board of Supervisors being to keep the regularly scheduled meeting dates in place including Monday, July 3. No action was taken, with the Monday, July 3 meeting to remain scheduled as a meeting date for the Supervisors.

Allamakee County Solid Waste Manager Dave Mooney addressed the next agenda item relating to the consideration of hiring a full-time employee for the Solid Waste Department. Mooney noted the interest in this vacancy within his department with 10 employment applications received and five interviews taking place. Mooney provided a recommendation to hire Tim Smedsrud at $17.25 per hour with a start date of April 1. The Supervisors approved that recommendation.

Under Department Head Updates, Allamakee County Engineer Brian Ridenour noted that the day of the meeting, March 20, is the first day of spring. He advised that the Secondary Roads Department has started to take off a few snowplow wings in anticipation of this change. Ridenour noted that some light blading on gravel roads will take place to smooth out some rough spots created during the winter. He advised that road embargo postings will be put up Tuesday, March 21 for asphalts that are traditionally embargoed this time of year. Ridenour also noted that interviews for a maintenance position in the Secondary Roads Department’s Waukon shop have not yet begun.

Mooney advised that a Comprehensive Plan update for the Solid Waste Department will begin soon with that planning to encompass the entire county. Mooney further noted that he would be setting up a time in the next few weeks to meet with the Supervisors relating to this planning process.

Prior to adjournment, Beyer discussed the budget process while advising that Department Heads will be reviewing their individual department budgets. Beyer noted that some budget-related amendments would be necessary due to grant funding. She advised that funds have been moved into a 12-month CD with FreedomBank, a matter approved at the March 13 Supervisors Meeting, relating to funding used for the County employee health plan which is a $5,000 deductible policy with a Partially Self-Funded Insurance Account allowing a $1,000 deductible, with the difference or gap between the $5,000-$1,000 deductible funded by this account.