Parks commission reviews financial reports

Thursday, October 1, 2020

By Haley Schichtl

The Eureka Springs Parks and Recreation Commission discussed the first and second quarter of 2020 financials in two special meetings Tuesday, Sept. 22, but did not approve the documents.

Accountant Rusty Windle of Windle & Associates was at the meeting to answer questions the commissioners had.

Windle said he is trying to change the way he gives the commission its financial reports within the next month.

“The ones I’ve given you are stuff I’ve compiled from your system and put it into mine to try and condense it down,” Windle said. “What I’ve tried to do is have everything where it’s all in your system and we’ve designed some reports. It will print off the summary stuff but you can bust it out for the detail. So every month, you can look it up and you’ve got exactly what’s going on.”

Commissioner Scott Bardin asked if the 0.125 percent tax for Lake Leatherwood City Park and the 0.25 percent parks tax are going into the same bank account. Windle said that was true at the beginning of the year but the taxes are now going into two separate checking accounts. He said that the funds that come from the 0.125 percent tax will all go toward Lake Leatherwood improvements.

Commissioner Kevin Ruehle asked how parks employees are keeping track of where and how they spend their hours. Parks director Justin Huss said previously employees did not do that, but the time sheets now have a spot for staff to specify.

Windle said that since employees did not specify when they spent time at Lake Leatherwood, the commission was unable to use the restricted funds from the tax to pay them for their labor, but now they will be able to.

Windle said he is working to reorganize the financials so in-house bookkeeper Nicky Boyette knows where things go, because now much of Windle’s job is bookkeeping as he works to get it cleaned up.

“He’s putting it in based off how he was showed to do it,” Windle said. “He’s very good at it — it’s just a matter of showing him things need to be put here, not here.”

Bardin asked when the commission can look at the third quarter financials, and Windle said those documents should be available by the end of the month. In the future, Windle said, he wants the commission to look at the finances each month rather than each quarter so it won’t take so long to review each quarter.

Chairwoman Ruth Hager said since the financials need some revisions, the commission could call another special meeting later on to approve them.

The commission's next regular meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 6, at The Auditorium.

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