By Susan Carroll
The Lake Orion Village Council held its final meeting of the year on Monday, receiving the village’s annual audit, year ending June 30, 2017, from Roger Hitchcock of the village’s new auditing firm, AHP — Andrews, Hooper, Pavlik.
AHP provided the village with the audit, assistance with drafting financial statements and the preparation of the State of Michigan Form F-65.
The audit was conducted and included examinations of the accounting records and various auditing procedures as necessary for AHP to offer an opinion on the financial statements.
Per the management letter provided by AHP, “We noted no matters involving the internal control over financial reporting and its operation that we would consider to be material weaknesses.”
Financial highlights included:
• Assets exceeded liabilities by $9,320,836. Of this amount, $684,800, can be used to meet the government’s obligations to residents and creditors.
• Village government combined funds end balances are $1,256,493. An estimated 33 percent of this figure is available for spending at the government’s discretion, via the unassigned fund balance.
• The fiscal year end unassigned fund balance for the general fund was $419,834.
• The total debt of the village increased by 35 percent ($33,994).
• There is a $7,736,744 deficit, largely due to pension and OPEB (Other Post-employment Benefits).
AHP made various current year recommendations, although they are not considered a substantial fault or material weakness. They recommended an improvement in the maintenance of account reconciliation and balancing of payroll and employee records, property taxes, utility billing receivables, capital assets, state shared revenues and escrow accounts.
“This is a lot of information to digest,” Hitchcock said.
Council President Ken VanPortfliet said the audit presentation was, “very good and instructional.”
Also at the meeting:
The council approved the go-ahead with the Notice of Intent to issue bonds prepared by bond counsel Miller Canfield for the $8 million Water Main replacement program to proceed with DWRF (Drinking Water Revolving Fund) financing.
The board was asked to approve the Lakeview Street storm drainage construction plan by replacing the two drainage structures in the middle of Lakeview Street with three larger structures and additional drainage pipe, as presented by HRC.
The village asked for bids in December with a one week deadline in order to have construction figures for this meeting.
The council recommended that the project be sent out for re-bid, giving contractors until the end of January to submit their construction bids and for the work to be completed in the spring instead of the winter.
“Spring prices are lower,” said Councilmember John Ranville, who also suggested that the land owners of Lakeview have a special assessment due to the cost to rectify the problem. “We can’t afford this.”
VanPortfliet added that, “We would all like to move along with some kind of action.”
The council approved the Paint Creek Trail Interlocal Agreement.
The agreement between the village council and the Orion Township Board of Trustees allows the village to have one voting seat and one alternative seat on the Paint Creek Trailways Commission as part of the township’s membership in the commission.
VanPortfliet said, “(It was) a lot of work. Thank you to everyone that participated. Job well done.”