Spring 2006 - Wisconsin City/County Management Association
WCMA NEWSLETTER SPRING 2006 WCMA Summer Conference GKST Donates to June Conference The 2006 Summer Conference will be held June 14 to 16 at The Cove in Lake Geneva. Wednesday will kickoff with a golf outing at Hawks View Golf Club. Wednesday evening will include a dinner cruise on beautiful Lake Geneva. Dave DeYoung with Griffin, Kubik, Stephens & Thompson donated $1,000.00 toward the cost of the golf outing at the June WCMA Conference in Lake Geneva. The outing will be held at Hawks View Golf Club. We appreciate the generous underwriting of this event by Dave and GKST. On Thursday morning, spouses and guests can join Sandy Grams for breakfast at Millies Pancake House, a local favorite in Delavan, along with window shopping at nearby shops after breakfast. Contact Sandy for more information or to let her know you are interested in attending at [email protected] Bob O’Neill to attend WCMA Conference The Thursday morning program will be an ICMA University Workshop entitled “Analytical Tools For Decision Makers”. In the afternoon, WAMCAM has arranged a program called “Motivating Public Sector Employees”. The afternoon will conclude with a presentation on “Municipal Investment Options”. On Friday we will conclude with a Legislative update, tips on working with legislators and the challenges of next generation managers. The morning will conclude with the Annual Business Meeting. The registration form and conference program is included with this newsletter. Registration materials are also available on the WCMA web site (www.wcmawi.org). Please return your st registration form no later than May 31 . Contact The Cove of Lake Geneva for room reservations at 2622499460 by May 15 th . We hope you will be able to join your colleagues for this educational and networking opportunity. Complete your registration and send in your payment right away so you won’t miss this great opportunity to achieve your professional development goals. (ICMA recommends 40 hours of professional training per year.) ICMA Executive Director Bob O’Neill will be attending the Summer WCMA Conference. Mr. O’Neill tries to attend as many state association meetings as possible and has included WCMA in his schedule this year, as one of the many association meetings he will be attending. We welcome Bob to our Conference in June. Future WCMA Conference Dates Mark your calendar now to attend the following WCMA conferences and other professional development opportunities: 2006 June 1416, WCMA Summer Conference, The Cove, Lake Geneva September 1013, ICMA Annual Conference, San Antonio, TX. 2007 March 79, WCMA Winter Conference, Radisson Hotel, La Crosse June 1315 WCMA Summer Conference, Chula Vista, Wisconsin Dells Help us keep our records updated! Members can update their own information on the WCMA web site. When you login to the “Members Only” area of the web site at www.wcmawi.org/members/index.php, click on “Edit Your Profile” under the heading “Member Directory” and update your email address, phone number and other information. If you do not have Internet access, contact WCMA for help by calling Ed Henschel at 4147775382 or email [email protected]
Page 2 WCMA Newsletter · Spring 2006 WCMA Internship Grants WAMCAM Events Last year, WCMA created an Internship Grant Program to encourage the use of interns to assist municipalities and to train future municipal leaders. The first grant in the amount of $2,000.00 was awarded to the Village of Suamico. Applications for grants and grant guidelines may be obtained from the WCMA website (www.wcmawi.org). Applications are due to Scott Gosse, Internship Grant Committee Chairman by June 15 th . The grants are 50/50 matching grants, with the awards to be made in August so that the winning municipality can include their match in their budget process. The Wisconsin Association of Municipal/County Assistant Managers has scheduled several events for 2006. All WCMA and WAMCAM members are encouraged to attend. Ehlers Donates to Grant Program The presentation will include instructions on how to conduct investigations of sexual harassment complaints or other discrimination complaints. Dean Dietrich is an attorney practicing in the areas of labor and employment law, representing public and private sector employers in many aspects of employment law and labor relations. Sara Ackermann is an attorney with experience advising and representing clients in the employment law arena. This year there will be at least two and potentially three internship grants awarded. In addition to the internship funded by WCMA, Ehlers & Associates has donated $2,000.00 to fund a second internship. In presenting the check to WCMA at the March conference, Mike Harrigan stated that he began his career as an intern and he understands how important they can be to get ones career started. Further, he stated that the entire Ehlers organization recognizes the importance of supporting the future of the municipal management profession and therefore was happy to make this donation for a second internship. Also at the March Conference, Ed Henschel stated that he also started his manager career through an unpaid internship. With the pending retirement of a large number of babyboomers, it is more important now than ever before to be developing tomorrow’s municipal leaders. He stated that he would donate $500.00 toward the Internship Grant Program, if others would match the donation to fund a third internship. (Note: Subsequent to issuing this challenge, CIVMIC notified WCMA that they also would contribute $500.00 toward an internship). 2006 WAMCAM Board of Directors President Holly Romenesko, City of Janesville Presidentelect Jeremy Smith, Vil. of Sussex Treas. Matt Trebatoski, Vil. of Johnson Creek Secretary Cameron Clapper, Vil. of Waunakee Past Pres. Rebecca Finn, Vil. of Elm Grove Membersatlarge Sara Schnoor, Vil. of Whitefish Bay; Rebecca Smith, City of Janesville Intern/Student Rep – Rebecca Houseman, City of Janesville April 13, 2006 – Mosinee Recent Decisions under the Wisconsin Federal Employment Act: How will they affect public employees? Dean Dietrich and Sara Ackermann of Ruder Ware will present recent court decisions concerning disability discrimination and sexual harassment that will have a significant impact on employers in the state. August 2, 2006 – Village of Johnson Creek Topic TBD October 25, 2006 – Village of Whitefish Bay Lessons from Experienced Managers: We’ve all been through this before. Listen to the stories of many of southeastern Wisconsin's most experienced managers. Dick Farrenkopf, Menomonee Falls Village Administrator, Paul Ziehler, West Allis Administrative Officer, Jim Payne, Waukesha Administrator and Dick Maslowski, Glendale City Administrator will participate in an interactive panel discussion reminding members of the cyclical nature of local government management. Optional Tour: Get a sneak preview of the new Bayshore Town Center before the grand opening in November 2006. The Town Center is the first of its kind in Wisconsin and will provide retail and entertainment venues, as well as residential units and office space. November 8, 2006 – Fox Cities Region Location and Topic TBD For more information or to register for any of these sessions, please contact Ed Henschel at 4147775382, or send an email to [email protected]
WCMA Newsletter · Spring 2006 Page 3 Ethics in Action Comings & Goings & New Members ICMA has always had a Code of Ethics. In 2004, WCMA adopted the same code to apply to all state members. The code tells us what actions are acceptable and unacceptable in our profession. Do you really know what it says? Is it something you review on a regular basis? Is there a framed copy on your wall to remind you of your commitment to the profession? Do you read the Ethics Inquiries in PM Magazine? Tony Chladek has been appointed City Administrator for Merrill, coming from Stewartville, MN. You’d be surprised at the number of members throughout the country who can’t respond positively to those questions. In the last few years, ICMA’s Committee on Professional Conduct (CPC) has seen a significant increase in the number of reported violations of the Ethics Code. As a result, the CPC has embraced education as one of the ways of dealing with members who have been found to have violated one or more tenets of the Code. It’s CPC’s contention that if we can encourage everyone to refresh their knowledge of the Code’s tenets and guidelines, then the number of violations will decrease. Jay Krause left Sturgeon Bay and has been appointed City Manager in Lewiston, Idaho. There are now experienced ICMA trainers and local government experts available to provide workshops for local governments that emphasize practical strategies and tools to help organizations build a more ethical culture. Topics addressed in the training include an orientation to public service values; the leader’s role in building an ethical culture; compliance strategies; and that support ethical values. Dan Schmidt retired as the Village Administrator in Kewaskum. Some local governments and WCMA have used ICMA for ethics operations training include. In addition, at the 2005 annual ICMA conference in Minneapolis, there was an Ethics Court that examined ethical uses from several perspectives and then the ‘judge’ revealed the correct manner to deal with each issue, based on the Code. Get to know the Ethics Code; it’s an invaluable tool for you and all your colleagues; encourage continuing education sessions on the Code in your region and your state; and help each other so that knowledge about the ICMA Code increases and the violations decrease. For more information about training and other ethics services available to local governments, contact the ICMA Ethics Center at (202) 962 3521 or visit http://icma.org/ethics. Sarah Jankowski, Planning Intern for the Village of Sturtevant has been appointed Planning Technician for the Town of Richfield. Michael King, Dane County Planning Director has joined WCMA. Chris Lear has announced his retirement as Germantown Village Administrator effective 6/30/06. Chris completed 33 years of service to local government. Chris will become a part time lay minister at Living Hope Lutheran Church in Saukville. Gary Petre left Franklin to become the County Administrator in Jefferson County. Timothy Rhode has been appointed the Butler Village Administrator. Tim was previously the administrator in Monticello, IA. Tom Wontorek is leaving Wauwatosa to become the City Manager of Lewes, Delaware. Congratulations and good luck to all who have been appointed to new positions. WCMA is a resource for you. Contact the Executive Director, your regional coordinator, or other members if you need ideas on how to handle problems or how to implement new policies. We apologize for any omissions. Please be sure to let us know of changes in employment, so we can update our records.
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Thank you to all the advertisers who help support this publication and the municipal management profession through WCMA. To advertise in WCMA publications, please call Ed Henschel at 4147775382, or send email to [email protected] WCMA Newsletter · Winter 2006 Page 5 Member Profile Mark Pollocoff, Pleasant Prairie Village Administrator Personal History I was born in Aurora, Colorado and was raised out in the country between Golden and Boulder, Colorado. My lifestyle as a child and young adult was extremely rural. I graduated from Arvada West High School, in Arvada, Colorado. The Most Daring Thing I’ve Ever Done I Canoed the Arkansas River in Colorado during a spring runoff. I thought I was fish food for sure. Education I received my BA in 1976 from Western State College of Colorado in Gunnison. I double majored in Political Science and History, with a minor in English. I did graduate work in Social Studies at Western in 1977 I completed MPA course work at University of Oklahoma 1981. Who is Your Role Model and Why? A City Manager who is retired now, named Tim Maupin. He was Assistant City Manager in Oklahoma City when I was there. He was a perfect mix of an involved manager that kept touch with daily operations, but he helped his people achieve great results. Although he could irritate a Council Member in a second, without a second thought, and he always worked for the best results of the City first and not himself. The guy was great. Why a Career in Municipal Management? I ask myself that question every day. I was on Student Council in high school, and on government day I was the City Manager for Arvada, Colorado. I had a great time; it was something different all day long. Public Administration Employment History My only position has been in Pleasant Prairie since 1985, first as a Town Administrator for four years then as Village Administrator. Other Jobs I installed landscaping and sprinkler systems through high school. I worked for Mountain Bell (AT&T) as a graphic artist and telephone operator. I was a draftsman for the City of Oklahoma City. I was a Budgetary and Administrative Specialist for the City of Oklahoma City. I was the Assistant director for Water Resources for the City of Oklahoma City. Most Significant Accomplishment Assembling a first class group of managers and department heads at the Village of Pleasant Prairie and creating an economically diverse and successful community out of a rural township. It has been a wonderful experience for me to work with so many talented and professional people that work so well together. Family Details I have been married 30 years to my wife Dawn, who graduated from college with me. My daughter Erin attends UWOshkosh as a 5 th year senior. My son Kyle is 19 and is autistic. He attends Kenosha Tremper High School in their Special Ed program. Hobbies and Other Interests I like to fly fish, hike and read. The Most Famous Person I Ever Met Floyd Little, an all star running back for the Denver Broncos. I met him at the Colorado School of Mines football field. I was on a midget league football team and we practiced there, and so did the Broncos, who in 1966 really stunk. The Broncos had the field and he was yelling at them to get off the field for some real players, my midget team. I asked him if he really meant it and he said he did, and he stayed and worked with us. Given how black football players were treated back then, I learned a lot more than football that day Most Embarrassing Moment When I was in Oklahoma City, as the Assistant Water Director, I was in a very intense meeting regarding litigation the city was involved in. My Director was standing up and making a statement, pointing to a map and the seat of his pants completely blew out. He kept talking and asked me to come up and help him. He grabbed a stapler off the City Managers desk and proceeded to have me staple his pants shut while he told a concrete pipe vendor how they were going to get killed in court for their inferior product. I didn’t know whether to laugh or run, but I was embarrassed for both of us. I did such a good job stapling his pants he announced that he could keep them for another year. The Best Advice I was Ever Given Treat everyone the way you would want to be treated, from my father.
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WCMA Newsletter · Spring 2006 Page 7 LEVY LIMITS & TIF, ARE THEY COMPATABLE ? Michael C. Harrigan, Executive Vice President / Director, Ehlers & Associates, Inc. The most significant element of the adopted state budget for municipalities is the levy limit component of the legislation. Following Governor Doyle’s vetoes, the legislation included three key provisions: 1.) Municipalities are limited in how much they can increase their current property tax levy to the growth in new construction value in their community in the prior year. The levy amount is the gross levy for municipal purposes (operations & debt). If the growth in new construction value in a community is less than 2% then that community will be allowed to increase its levy by the minimum of 2%. 2.) The legislation includes an exception for the amount by which a community is allowed to increase its levy for additional principal and interest on debt service for existing and future debt issues. 3.) The limit does not apply to the levy for Tax Increment Districts. IMPACT ON COST TO SERVICE TID AREAS Many of our clients have asked our opinion regarding the impact of this legislation on their existing tax increment districts and the wisdom of creating new ones. They are asking about this because, even though the legislation has an exemption for debt service and TIF levies, there is a lingering concern about the ability to take advantage of the new growth when the TID closes to cover any additional costs of servicing that TID area. Our observation and comment regarding this point is that: 1.) TIF legislation has always precluded the ability to capture value while the TIF is in existence to pay for the costs of service to that area. You can include direct costs attributable to the TID administration in the project plan but ongoing servicing costs (DPW, Police & Fire staffing costs) are not considered eligible project costs. Many communities had anticipated being able to increase their levies to cover servicing costs once their district closes. This is no longer possible. 2.) To manage this impact, communities are encouraged to anticipate the incremental costs of service within a TID. Previously, these costs could be managed by increasing the levy as needed or stretching the staff coverage until the TID closed and then adding the staffing required with the idea that the impact would be nil to existing taxpayers due to the TIF tax base coming online. 3.) Under the new law, waiting to add staff is not a viable option if the idea is to take advantage of the additional tax base coming on line upon TIF closure. The way the legislation is drafted, the net impact of additional tax base coming on line due to TID closure will be to force the tax rate down because the TIF value will not be considered “new construction” value at the time the TID closes, therefore you are not going to be allowed to increase your levy by the TID tax base addition. Instead, the effect will be to reduce the tax rate. 4.) In order to effectively manage the servicing cost impacts, it will be important for the community to annually assess the servicing needs generated by the TIF area and to evaluate the impact of any additional cost on the overall levy. In so doing, it is important to note that the new law DOES allow you to count growth both inside and outside the TID in determining the percentage increase allowed in the levy. Therefore, in order to avoid a “mismatch” in timing between when the levy would be allowed to increase and when any additional costs of service would be able to be added, it will be important for municipal officials to carefully evaluate the operating budget requirements for both TID th and nonTID areas as quickly as possible after August 15 each year, the date by which the Department of Revenue will distribute the valuation growth data for both TID and nonTID areas. (continued on Page 8)
Page 8 WCMA Newsletter · Spring 2006 Levy Limits and TIF (continued from Page 7) 5.) A consequence of increasing the levy for servicing a TID district will be that this levy will have to be borne by the property OUTSIDE the district while the district is still open. This does NOT however, automatically mean that there will be an increased cost to all property tax payers. The only time that there is an increase in cost to existing taxpayers to service a TID while the TID is in existence is if the growth in the new construction value Outside the TID is less than the percentage increase required in the levy to service both TID and NONTID areas. This scenario has always been the case for TID districts even prior to this legislation. The only difference is that the levy is now limited to growth in new construction and there is no ability to increase the levy by an amount greater than the allowed percentage when the TID closes (other than for debt service.) OBSERVATIONS & RECOMMENDED PRACTICES Generally, communities that are experiencing real new growth are going to have much more flexibility in dealing with levy limits than communities that have little or no opportunity for growth. As such, every community is unique and the facts and circumstances for each community must be carefully understood and evaluated. We would offer the following observations and suggestions: 1.) Communities who have successful TIF districts will fare much better under levy limits than those that do not. This is due to the fact that growth in the levy will allow the inclusion of TID growth. Once the TID closes there will continue to be a tremendous net beneficial effect on the tax rate. (A reduction !) 2.) Communities should strive for balanced growth inside and outside of the Tax Increment District in order to maintain the ability to have minimal impact on the costs of service while a TID is in existence. 3.) Communities will need to monitor their debt service levy to make sure that the amounts needed to service both current and prospective debt are properly excluded from the limits as either pre or post July 2005 authorized debt. 4.) Costs of service for TID areas should be projected and analyzed within the context of the creation of the TID project plan. As the plan is managed throughout the implementation period, the community must consider adding to its levy for costs of servicing TID areas AS THE DEVELOPMENT OCCURS within that area. 5.) As always, the creation of TIDs should be limited to those situations where the new development would NOT have occurred “BUT FOR” the creation of the TID district. Many of our clients are utilizing our services to have the “but for” test empirically applied by obtaining copies of the developer’s proforma to evaluate the reasonableness of the return on investment and then “testing” the impact on said returns with and without varying levels of TID assistance. Essentially, the adopted budget bill indirectly reinforces many of the underlying concepts of TID that have been in place from the beginning of the program. It does mean that there will be a greater need for financial planning and analysis to make sure that a community does not miss the opportunity to capture value for levy purposes when that value occurs.