Wednesday, January 10, 2018

The following is from an email from the Templeton Town Administrator concerning the request of the Templeton Advisory Committee to have a Town reserve fund of $80,000.00.

If you remember, Town Meeting via the T/A and board of selectmen left over 300 thousand dollars of free cash (left over taxpayer money) on the table under the working capital description. Since the selectmen's own financial policy states "to replenish other reserves", it seems prudent to fund this requested budget item at the requested amount from that still unused free cash. This increase in the emergency reserve fund could help Templeton in it's quest to obtain a bond rating. This could be accomplished without affecting any other department, such as the senior center (COA). Whatever, if any, amount of the reserve fund that is not used during the fiscal year, would revert back to free cash (so called), which again, would help the selectmen (Town) meet their policy of generating free cash in the 5% of the prior year's budget. This is another example of the Advisory Committee trying to help the Town, ie: selectmen in their quest to create and follow these policies.

Now we will see if the selectmen truly wish to work together for the benefit of the Town, I will be watching and reporting.



Policy:

The Town of Templeton will continue to avoid using free cash to fund the operating budget, except in the event of an emergency or extraordinary or unforeseen events as described in A-1 above.

The Town will endeavor to annually generate free cash of 5 percent of the prior year’s omnibus operating budget, less school debt

The Town will strive to have its free cash certified in time for use at its Fall Town Meeting.  Free Cash may be used for certain one-time expenditures, such as major capital projects, emergencies, other unanticipated expenditures and deficits (i.e. snow & ice) or to replenish other reserves.  Free cash shall not be depleted in any year, so that the following year's calculation will begin with a positive balance.




2 comments:

  1. Anonymous10:35 AM

    They will strive to endeavor. Meaning - we can do what we want if we want and none of the rest really matters because we don't have to follow theses suggestions if we feel otherwise. Suck it taxpayer.

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  2. MGL Chapter 40 section 6 states that towns can create an Emergency Reserve of up to 5% of the previous years budget.
    Article 5 and Article 7 of the Fall Town meeting amount to $197,000. These were unforeseen expenses that we used 4 years of accumulated free cash to pay.

    How we are ever going to replace our equipment utilizing our CapEX account is laughable. With 4 years of free cash we placed $40,000 in our CAPEX account. Is it better than nothing, yes, is it remotely sufficient, NO!
    The % breakdown given by our TA shows that in an average year we will be putting around $20,000 a year into capex. $20,000 is peanuts when one years lease on a cruiser is $12,000. Templeton has 49 vehicles plus Fire/EMS, multiple buildings, etc.
    A Firetruck costs about $500,000, a 6 wheel dump truck is $170,000, Cruisers are $43,000.

    If we want our Safety equipment to function properly Templeton truly cannot afford any more missteps. We need to make smart, efficient decisions with the "big picture" always in mind.

    We need to operate as "Templeton" and not as the x department, y department, etc. We dont need to duplicate expensive equipment purchases just so each department has one. Their is no reason we cannot plan usage in 99% of the cases so "Templetons" equipment can be used across multiple departments.

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