The Board of Aldermen Thursday night agreed to hire a Jefferson City firm to audit the city of New Bloomfield for 2010 through 2012.
The aldermen approved a proposed contract from Evers & Co., Certified Public Accountants, LLC of Jefferson City that would charge the city based on hours required to complete the audit. The contract provides that total costs would be within a range of $9,500 to $12,500 each year for period from 2010 through 2011 and within a range from $10,000 to $13,000 for 2012.
City Clerk Tracina Shaw said the audit for 2010 will begin this April. She said as Evers & Co. has gained more experience in auditing the city, fewer hours are required to complete the audit.
"The auditing firm already has access to city records. Using last year as a guide, I believe they are likely to come here for only a couple of days and then I will field some phone calls from them the next few days after the actual auditing here is completed. It's been a lot easier the last two years that I have been here than it was when I started as city clerk," Shaw said.
Shaw said last year Evers & Co. charged $12,000 for the audit.
Alderwoman Rosemary Augustine said only a few firms are eligible to do the auditing that is now required by the city of New Bloomfield. "There are not that many firms now that can comply with what is required by law," Augustine said. She added that auditing costs should hold steady or decrease each year as the firm becomes more familiar with the operation of the city. She said after this contract, the city may want to explore hiring another firm to determine if costs could be reduced. But she noted that costs may be more from another firm because they would not familiar with city procedures.
City Attorney Mark Warren said he recalls the audit was put out on bid earlier and Evers & Co. was the only firm that responded. He said the Jefferson City-based firm audits many other cities in the area and is well qualified.
In other action, City Superintendent Mike Rieken told the aldermen that he would attempt to gain partial reimbursement from the federal government for costs associated with snow removal during the recent blizzard that dumped more than a foot of snow on the city.
"The federal snow storm disaster declaration is for the period from Jan. 31 through Feb. 5. I will meet with representatives of the Callaway County Emergency Operations Center to secure the forms we need to make the request for partial reimbursement for our costs. We can do this because the Federal Emergency Management Agency has approved a state request to designate the state of Missouri as a disaster area because of the storm," Rieken said.
Police Chief John Hatfield said Jeff Howard, who has worked as a deputy for the Callaway County Sheriff's Department, has accepted a reserve police officer position with the New Bloomfield Police Department. Hatfield said Howard would be able to work during the day for the department.
Hatfield noted that during the last month he and four other officers had donated a total of 83.5 hours of service to the city.
Hatfield requested additional emergency LED lights for use in the back of an unmarked patrol vehicle. The police chief said he would learn the exact cost and submit a proposal later to the board.