CLOVERDALE -- Town Clerk Treasurer Patti Truax pleaded with the council Tuesday evening to cut back on unnecessary expenses. The general fund for the town is down to $25,000. This is the fund that is used to pay part of the employees their wages every week.
"I spoke with the auditor and she believes we should have our tax draw around August," said Truax. "We just have to watch our spending and be frugal, but we'll be alright."
As it stands, the weekly draw on the general fund is around $5,000 for workers' paychecks. With additional draws on the account, Council Member Terry Puffer pointed out that the general fund could be depleted as soon as three weeks.
"We need to look into this before it becomes a real issue," said Puffer. "It's better to look at acquiring funds now rather than waiting until we're in a really tight spot."
For this, Puffer suggested they approve a loan be taken out from the riverboat fund which presently has $40,000. Town Attorney Alan Yackey also said they could draw from the sewage fund or obtain an outside loan. However, at the meeting, there were no decisions made on the matter.
Town Council President Don Sublett reported that the town is now set up to take Visa cards for utility payments. This will make it easier for residents to make their payments at Town Hall.
The board also heard from their financial advisors regarding their water fund. It has been 10 years since anything has been done regarding water rates in the fund. Operating expenses are around $458,000 annually. This is an increase from prior years due in part to rising costs of essential chemicals.
The financial advisor said there is currently a $100,000 shortage from funds to operating cost ratio. This problem is being reported in many other communities such as Brownsburg and Plainfield as well. The increase is around 23 percent and the board will discuss doing this in small increments to ease the cost put on the consumers.
Another way to ease the cost of operating is to cut back on health insurance. There was a 12 percent increase on the health insurance premium reported from within the past three years. The council discussed the issue of changing the health benefit package for town employees.