Plainfield audit presented to public

By Marney Simon | Enterprise Staff

The village of Plainfield has opened its books for the public.

On Oct. 2, the village presented the financial annual audit report, for the fiscal year that ended on April 30, 2017 (FY17).

Financial highlights of this year’s report include:

  • Total net position as of April 30, 2017 –$327,160,397, a decrease of $6,555,600.
  • Governmental activities recognized a decrease in net position of $7,453,048.
  • The Business-type activities recognized an increase of $897,448 in net position.

The total revenues, including transfers, of all governmental activities increased by $1.9 million. Total expenses increased by $389,237.

Per the report, governmental funds reported a combined ending fund balance of $28 million, an increase of $4.8 million over the prior fiscal year.

The total fund balance for the general fund was $10.8 million, an increase of $212,082 over the previous fiscal year.

The total fund balance for the capital projects Fund was $13.4 million, an increase of $4.6 million over the prior year.

In March of 2014, the Village Board revised its financial policies to include the ability to transfer unassigned general fund balance in excess of 40 percent to the capital fund. In FY17, $2.1 million was transferred from the general fund to the capital fund.

“We issued an unmodified opinion, which is the highest level of assurance that we provide to the village,” said Jim Savio of Sikich LLC of Naperville, the firm which conducted the audit.

Village officials were pleased with the annual audit.

“The one part that is particularly important to me is the amount of money we rolled over from the general fund to the capital fund, that was $2.1 million,” said Trustee Bill Lamb “The capital fund increased several million dollars over the past year, which is something that is very important, and allows us to do more projects in the future.”

Lamb lauded staff for their efforts to control expenses.

“We run a very big business,” Lamb said. “It’s a very comprehensive business, this report does an excellent job of describing… where the money goes and what we do.”

The 139-page report can be found on the village’s website, at plainfield-il.org/pages/agendasmeetings.

Tree Purchases

The board approved a motion to waive bidding, and authorize the purchase and installation of approximately 800 parkway trees. The trees will come from the Suburban Tree Consortium, at a cost not to exceed $200,000.

The village is about 18 months behind schedule on replacing those parkway trees, which were damaged or killed by invasive emerald ash borer pests. Thousands of trees still need to be replaced throughout the village.

“Besides budgetary constraints, it’s actually finding adequate trees,” Village Administrator Brian Murphy said of the delay. “The suburban tree consortium does a wonderful job and we’re one of the participants in that program, and it gives us access to some fantastic trees.”

Murphy said development in the area slowed down right around the time that the ash borers hit. But at that same time, nurseries were planting fewer trees for parkway use, meaning that most of the inventory available consists of trees larger than the village is looking to install.

“Trying to get trees in has been something of a challenge for us.”

“Also, we want to make sure that we’re doing a more robust job in having diversity in our trees, so that we don’t run into a similar situation as we’re seeing with the ash borers.”

Murphy said that while the large efforts to take down those ash trees destroyed by the pests is mostly over, there are still many areas of town where additional trees have yet to be removed.

Murphy said the process to finally get rid of all the diseased trees and replace them will likely take several more years.

Lower DuPage Watershed Coalition

The board signed off on a resolution to continue participation in the Lower DuPage River Watershed Coalition.

Staff has been actively involved in the coalition for several years.

Recently, the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency has required communities throughout the state to participate in watershed groups.

Participation means that the village has a voice in regulation development and related financial impacts, balancing regulations, and access to federal and state grant funding.

The village joined the coalition, which is a registered 501(c)3 non-profit organization, in 2012.

The 2017 contribution to the coalition from the village of Plainfield is $26,515.24.

2017 Seal Coat Program

The board approved a contract for the 2017 seal coat program, with Denler Incorporated of Mokena, at a cost of $191,365.45.

The village received three bids for the project.

The work consists of patching and seal coating of various city-owned parking lots and paths, as well as pavement marking.

The bid was about 5 percent below the engineer’s estimate for the project.

Holiday Market Approved

The board approved a permit for a temporary outdoor use request for a winter market at The Farmhouse, at 12729 S. Naperville Road.

The property owners plan to have several vendors featured at the site in Dec. 2 and Dec. 3.

The holiday vintage market is expected to showcase about 40 vendors selling upcycled and repurposed items, as well as food vendors.

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