Financial Management & Administrative Services
The mission of the Finance Department is to ensure that all resources of the City of Montpelier are managed and accounted for in an effective and efficient manner, that all financial records are presented in a timely, accurate and meaningful format and that all staff members work toward continuous improvement and professional service.
The Montpelier Finance Department is responsible for maintaining the accounting, payroll, payables, insurance and billing programs for the City of Montpelier. The Finance Department provides regular financial information to Department Heads, the City Manager, the Council and residents. Our department prepares the annual City budget, manages human resources and coordinates the annual audit. The Finance Department also oversees all grant activities to assure proper use and reporting of grant funds.
Many reports are available on the City’s web site.
Budget information can be found online at:
The City of Montpelier Annual Audit can be found online at:
Employment Agreements can be found online at:
Periodically Released Financial Data (Voucher listings, etc.) can be found at:
The City of Montpelier has 22 active funds, 10 departments and 4 labor contracts/employee plans. Montpelier has $59 million dollars invested in capital assets financed by 41 loans that total $23 million dollars. The annual operating budgets for the City’s governmental and business-type activities total $18 million dollars. Our Chart of Accounts has over 2200 accounts which is an indication of the complexity of our financial structure.
Our department is completing a major reorganization which began in 2011 when the city treasurer position became an appointed rather than elected position. We are combining the treasurer functions with the finance department to increase efficiencies and strengthen financial controls. Charlotte Hoyt, Clerk/Treasurer for many years, retired from the city clerk position in March, 2012. Charlotte returned to city employment in August, 2012 in a part-time finance position which also includes staying on the appointed city treasurer. Charlotte’s historical knowledge is important to the success of our department’s restructuring. In addition to the reorganization, Sharon Blatchford, our Payroll and HR Manager, helps us achieve our goal to strengthen our human resource services as recommended in the Matrix Management Study.
During 2012, our department also benefitted from another employee retirement. Beverlee Hill, previously the Assistant City Manager and Delinquent Tax Collector, retired in June 2012 and returned to city employment as a part-time tax collector and assistant to the City Manager.
Looking ahead, the City’s District Heating Project will be completed in the late fall of 2013. Our department will transition from grant management to fiscal management of this new city utility fund.
At this time the department relies on a Senior Staff Accountant, Ruth Dockter and Accounting Manager, Kristine Morande to oversee the daily financial activity and responsibilities of the department. Loretta Bresette, Billing Clerk and Peggy Bolduc, Accounting Clerk have new job descriptions and successfully transitioned to the Finance Office. Fred Skeels, Information Technology & Communication Manager works with a Technology Technician, to maintain the citywide computer, network and telephone technology services.
During my six years as the City’s Finance Director, the City faced many financial challenges as we strive to minimize the effects of ever- increasing operating and infrastructure costs, unfunded state and federal regulations, and the extremes of Vermont’s weather. The flood damages to the City’s streets and wastewater treatment plant caused by the May 27, 2011 storm and Hurricane Irene totaled over $2,000,000. The combination of a slow-growing economy, little growth in the City’s grand list and our relatively high property tax rates has resulted in decisions to differ capital improvements, maintenance and equipment replacement. Constant efforts are required to manage the cost of employee benefits and come up with a multi-year plan to fund improvements to our aging roads, drainage systems, buildings, sewer and water infrastructure.
Our city staff actively pursues state and federal grants to help pay for weather-related damages, new programs, equipment replacement and capital improvement projects. In FY12, the City expended more than $3.8 million in grant funds on 26 federal and state grant awards. Our efforts to maximize non-property tax revenue and carefully manage expenditures become increasingly important as the City faces the financial challenges ahead.
I appreciate the support that the Finance Department receives from the City Councilors, William Fraser, City Manager and other members of the City’s management team. Our office is located in City Hall and is open Monday-Friday from 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM. We welcome city residents’ questions, comments and concerns. If I can be of service, do not hesitate to call me at the office (262-6253) or e- mail: email@example.com
SANDRA J. GALLUP, Finance Director