The District of Lantzville’s financial department will expand.Lantzville councillors voted in favour of hiring a full-time temporary deputy director of financial services. Once hired, the anticipated start date would be sometime next month and would last until December of 2017.
The cost is $108,000, including benefits.
The decision comes after a report from staff to council outlined reasons for needing the help, including an ongoing financial system review, which uncovered the mobile home parcel tax issue, that must be completed by the end of 2017.The report states that at the current level of staffing along with the complexities involved in undertaking the review, a temporary deputy director of financial services will help reduce the work load.It also cited that staff have discovered other financial issues by the district, including improperly applied payroll rates and benefits, incorrectly tracking accounts receivable invoices and payments. Staff also identified a potential issue that the district did not include parcel tax amounts and Class 9 assessments in the homeowner grant calculation, which 171 properties may be impacted over the course of 13 years. Coun. Will Geselbracht supported the motion and told councillors that the district needs to fix the numerous issues that Lantzville’s previous CAO, Brad McRae, and Jeannie Beauchamp, the district’s director of finance, have identified.
“I want to see the district get out of the financial problems that we find ourselves in,” he said. “The only way to do is to hire competent staff to get at it.”
Coun. Denise Haime expressed concerns about the position’s salary, saying she couldn’t understand why it was so high.
“I don’t understand why the salary is so high,” she said. “No offense to staff but this stuff isn’t rocket science. It’s repetitive journal entries and repetitive looking after 171 files. It’s the same stuff over and over. I think we could bring in someone on a contract basis.”
The position is expected to be filled within the next few weeks.