Falls sits strong financially; 2012 had surplus

July 16, 2013

Menomonee Falls — "The village is in very good shape financially," Tom Wieland, accountant from Reilly, Penner & Penton, told the Menomonee Falls Village Board on Monday during a presentation of the 2012 comprehensive annual financial report.

Overall, general fund expenditures were 3 percent under budget in 2012, which is a $665,000 savings, Director of Financial Services Jason Kaczmarek said. Savings came from a few areas including seven layoffs and lower-than-expected fuel costs.

Because of state-mandated revenue limits, the village has downsized 30 percent over the last six years. Village staff has been reduced from 273 employees to 180, Village Manager Mark Fitzgerald said, adding that 2012 "is probably the last" necessary downsizing the village will have to do for the next several years.

Despite the downsizing, village services were not affected, he said.

"We radically reorganized, we flattened the organization, we combined departments, we combined management staff — all of that work allowed us to work with less total people in a 21st century organization vs. a 20th century organization," Fitzgerald said.

Expenditures for 2012 were up 0.3 percent over 2011. Protective services personnel costs and the costs of additional elections in 2012 account for the bump.

In total, there was an operating surplus of $994,152 in 2012.The village is transferring $500,000 of that to the municipal facilities and equipment fund to offset future equipment and capital expenses. By the late 2020s, Menomonee Falls is hoping to be entirely self-sufficient and fund capital projects internally, Fitzgerald said.

The village already has taken steps toward self-funding. In March, when the Village Board approved 2013 capital project financing, the village used a one-time cash allocation of $4 million out of the fund to create a one-year gap in borrowing and making it so the village does not have to levy for debt service to finance capital improvement projects. Eventually, this fund will become a revolving fund and the hope is that the village will have $22 million in cash on hand by 2029.

Take a look

▶ The full 2012 comprehensive annual financial report will be available online at Menomonee-Falls.org.

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