I have served the City of Isanti as Mayor since 2007. We have accomplished great things together and I look forward to building on our success. United, we move forward to a better future. You may contact me at 763-442-8749 or e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org. My website is www.georgewimmer.com
County Board meeting tomorrow at 9am at County Government Center in Cambridge ... more questions being raised about charging per diems for so many meetings and even phone call meetings from home ... this just gets more disappointing all the time....
Where are the reports and proof of attendance that back all these charges up? When do we get to see all the useful information that our tax dollars are being used for? When will actual policies and rules be put in place at the County level that will regulate how tax dollars are used to compensate County Commissioners....
The State Auditor’s report identified some concerns
regarding Isanti County’s 2011 audit.
Juli Mader from the Office of the State Auditor presented
the Isanti County Board of Commissioners at the meeting July 18 with the
county’s 2011 audit report of the financial statements of government activities
and major funds.
The purpose of the audit is to express opinions about
whether the financial statements prepared by management with the county’s
oversight are fairly presented in conformity with accounting principles
accepted in the United States, according to the Office of the State Auditor.
Overall, all significant transactions were recognized in the
financial statements in the proper period, the report stated. The statement
disclosures were neutral, consistent and clear, and no misstatements were
identified. The state auditor’s office had no difficulties dealing with
management in completing the audit.
According to the report, several of the county’s departments
that collect fees lack proper segregation of duties.
“A good system of internal control provides for an adequate
segregation of duties so that no one individual handles a transaction from its
inception to completion,” the report stated.
Offices in the county that do not have sufficient
segregation of duties include highway, sheriff and public health. These
departments generally have one staff person who is responsible for billing,
collecting, recording and depositing receipts, as well as reconciling bank
“Inadequate segregation of duties could adversely affect the
county’s ability to detect misstatements,” the report stated. “Due to the
limited number of office personnel within the county, segregation of the
accounting functions necessary to ensure adequate internal accounting control
is not possible. This is not unusual in operations the size of Isanti County.
However, the county’s management should constantly be aware of this condition and
realize that the concentration of duties and responsibilities in a limited
number of individuals is not desirable from an accounting point of view.”
The state auditor understands that the county does not have
the funds needed to hire additional qualified accounting staff in order to
segregate duties in every department, but recommends the county’s elected
officials and management be aware of the lack of segregation of accounting
functions and implement oversight procedures to ensure the internal control
policies and procedures are being implemented.
policies and procedures
The auditor’s report also noted that an inquiry of county
management found that significant internal controls of its accounting system
have not been documented, and the county lacks written policies and procedures,
including risk assessment and monitoring procedures.
“Without formal policies and procedures including risk
assessment and monitoring procedures, the county increases its risk of fraud,”
the report stated.
The county has begun to develop formal policies that will
include these procedures, but due to limited time and resources, the county
hasn’t been able to complete the project.
The state auditor recommended that the county continue to
implement procedures to document internal controls in its accounting system,
and that a formal plan be developed that calls for assessing and monitoring the
significant internal controls on a regular basis, no less than annually.
During the review of the sheriff and jail departments,
numerous internal control weaknesses related to cash handling procedures were
noted, but new procedures have now been implemented by the departments.
points of discussion:
As part of the audit, the state auditor took a sample of
expense reimbursements and credit card transactions to verify policies were
During the testing, they noted that one out of five Wright
Express card transactions included the purchase of a non-fuel item that was not
supported with a detailed receipt. Original itemized receipts should be
retained to determine the date, time and items purchased, the report stated.
Odometer readings are not required for Wright Express gas
transactions. Active monitoring of fuel purchases is important and should
include reviewing all fuel purchases for each officer and vehicle at least
monthly, as well as calculating fuel consumption for each vehicle, the report
A monthly review of fuel purchases may “disclose that public
funds were used to fuel private vehicles. Requiring odometer reading and
monitoring usage may deter abuse by the users,” the report stated.
Additionally, two out of eight employee expense
reimbursement claims tested were submitted at the end of the year for mileage
throughout the entire year. To ensure expenditures are being paid and reduce
the risk of error, the Office of the State Auditor recommended the policy be
changed to require claims for reimbursement be submitted at least monthly.
In other action, the board:
• Approved a resolution in support of a change in the
affidavit of candidacy. Currently, candidates filing for local office must maintain
residence in the district for at least 30 days, but the board feels “a serious
candidate should gain residency significantly before this date.” It is
requesting the Association of Minnesota Counties (AMC) Legislative Committee to
add the issue to their 2013 legislative platform.
I would like the opportunity to continue
serving the City of Isanti as a Council Member due to the different
perspectives I am able to provide as a small business / commercial banker,
small business owner, husband/father, and several year resident of Isanti. In representing the people of Isanti as a
council member, I am able to carry the voices of 99% of the citizens in each
piece of legislation. It would be an
honor to continue as a participant in providing the blue print of Isanti for
many generations to come.
In continuing as an Isanti Council Member, I would work very
hard to carry the will of all residents in each piece of legislation that
enters the council chambers. I do not
seek this office due to any hidden agendas or personal opinions that do not
look out for the best interest of all citizens.
I plan to use good common sense in approaching all the work that is
accomplished by the Isanti City Council.
My idea of common sense is rooted in long-term financial planning/budgeting
and policies that make actual sense to the common person. I believe that in order for the future
direction of Isanti to continue to be bright for many years to come, the City
Council will need to use good common sense and ideas that are fresh and new. For example, I believe the Isanti Public
Works Department could share many resources with surrounding communities as
well as Isanti County. The sharing of
common resources could provide several cost cutting measures to the city in
both the short and long term.
I feel the biggest issue facing the City of Isanti is the
current uncertainty in the amount of revenues the city receives annually from
the State of Minnesota as well as the city’s stagnant commercial and
residential tax base.
The State of Minnesota continues to hand over fewer and fewer
of our tax dollars to local municipalities, thus causing cities such as Isanti to
take a hard look at what core services are essential necessity to it’s
residents. I feel it is very important
that the voices of all businesses and residents are represented at the Isanti
City Council in deciding what city services are essential long-term to the
city. The City of Isanti will need to
work toward little-to-no dependence on funding from the State of Minnesota.
The business tax base continues to remain stagnant due to
businesses that are forced to close down operations and leave town, as well as
a lack of businesses spending capital on expansion and growth into the Isanti
area. The city continues to experience high
levels of residential foreclosures, thus plaguing the revenues that the city
receives from the residential tax base.
The City Council will need to work very hard to continue to build up the
business tax base as well as continued work in reducing residential foreclosures. The current citizens cannot afford to pay any
more in additional taxes, thus the Council will need to work hard to attract
additional tax payers to the City of Isanti.
I will not support any
legislation that will increase taxes to the citizens of Isanti, thus I will
pledge to work very hard personally to bring in additional business to the
city, increase the commercial tax base, and fine tune any unnecessary spending
of all our tax dollars. I have many
years experience working with all types of businesses, thus I am up to the
challenge of working as an active council member to attract additional
businesses and residents to the Isanti area.
I feel I am most qualified, and the better choice for Isanti
Council Member, due primarily to my extensive background and the perspectives
it provides. I grew up on a farm, which
provided a solid background in common sense, the meaning of hard work, and
personal pride in a job done correctly. I have a college degree in business
administration, which offered me the opportunity to take the everyday real-life
experiences of operating my father’s farm and reinforce these principles with
the knowledge I gained in a college degree program. I have worked for a St. Paul based bank for
the past 10 years, currently serving as Vice President, Credit Risk Manager. In my current position, I am in charge of
creating financial solutions for business lending customers in the bank’s
footprint ranging from Lakeville, MN to Minot ND. In the past, I also owned and operated my own
landscaping company in Isanti. Currently,
I have had the opportunity at the will of the current Isanti City Council, to
serve as a member of the Isanti Planning Commission as well as a current member
of the Isanti City Council. It has been
an honor to help guide the direction of our city as well as the planning and
zoning of this great city for the past five years. On top of all of this, my most important
responsibility is that my wife and I are currently raising 6 children here in
Isanti, MN. I feel my background as
listed above provides me with a good perspective on what the majority of Isanti
residents and businesses are experiencing on a daily basis. My background will aid in keeping my hand on
the pulse of both the short term and long-term needs of residents and
businesses in Isanti.
I appreciate your support and look forward to continuing to
serve you, the residents and businesses that call Isanti home.
Council candidates speaking in platitudes ... only specifics so far are from Lundeen/Strieff on Council and Kimberly Horst ... also like seeing Candidate Horst putting her thoughts into words at her blog site http://khurdhorst.blogspot.com/
Went through the Community Center this morning with staff & CM Larson to detail the needed improvements & layout the process going forward ... I am also having contractor bids done to give us accurate information to the complete cost of the renovations. This will allow us to show the impact any levy increase vote would have. I have not made my mind up on the issue but I want to make sure all the information is accurate and complete for the voters.
Tonight's budget session and Council meeting went quite well.... we achieved everything we needed too..... We had only one Council candidate at Council tonight and none at the budget work session ... I hope attendance improves... we have a lot of work to do ...