Rec authority receives clean audit

By: Sara Kandel | Roseville - Eastpointe Eastsider | Published February 27, 2013

EASTPOINTE/ROSEVILLE — In its first year as a public organization, the Recreational Authority of Eastpointe and Roseville received a clean audit.

The audit covered the fiscal year from July 1, 2011, to June 30, 2012: a time period which predates the authority’s actual time in existence. Work on it began during the 2011 summer, it was approved by voters in November 2011 and, technically, it became a reality in January 2012, when resident taxes started funding it, though the actual consolidation of services didn’t occur until June 2012 — but as a public organization, an audit was required and, in January, recreation officials presented the findings of that audit to their member cities.

“It was a very challenging year, but we pulled it all together and, as the report shows, we did it well,” said Eastpointe City Manager and Recreational Authority board member Steve Duchane. “It was a clean audit report.

“There was no significant issues, which is really a major achievement because, when you think that we had to enter land use agreements with both cities to use the parks, we had to develop a financial plan that addressed our three full-time employees — everybody else is part-time or fee-based — we had to find alternative methods to offer services and we had to find capital to do building improvements, and when you think we had to do all that while trying to transfer from the prior Eastpointe and Roseville contracts into new ones and into the Roseville building, it was a lot of work and in a short amount of time — far less than a year, actually.”

The audit showed that the authority has achieved a reasonably strong fund balance and is operating at cash solvency, which means they aren’t spending more than they bring in, and their governmental accounting procedures have worked well in this new joint procedure.

According to the audit report, which was compiled by Plante & Moran, in its first year as a resident-supported public organization, the authority brought in $1.48 million, expenditures rang up at $731,073, leaving an ending fund balance of $808,925.

“We were very glad to get a clean audit,” said Recreational Authority Director Tony Lipinski. “It is a work in progress that continues with the Recreational Authority. We are continuously looking at our costs and trying to find ways to offer programs to the communities at low cost.”

Both Lipinski and Duchane noted that the clean audit report was made possible through their contract with the City of Roseville Controller’s Office, which manages the authority’s payroll and financial documents.

“I compliment the support we received through our administrative services agreement with the City of Roseville’s Controller’s Office,” Duchane said. “Together, we really put together a great budget and the board worked well together so we could get this done and could be audited.”

The authority, which serves approximately 81,000 residents between the two communities, is currently working on a five-year financial plan that will address programming, facility improvements and ways to continue to grow a fund balance for the future.

The Recreational Authority board meets monthly at 5:30 p.m. on the second Thursday of the month at the rec center, located at 18185 Sycamore in Roseville. For more information on the authority, call (586) 445-5480.