Idyllwild Fire struggling with new financial system

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In its first session of fiscal year 2016-17, which started July 1, the Idyllwild Fire Department’s Finance Committee had a nominal session. The five-member committee still has two citizen vacancies. Calvin Gogerty, an IFPD resident, is now the committee chair, and commissioners Nancy Layton and Jeannine Charles-Stigall join him on the committee.

“I’ve talked to a couple of people. But they will be soon overwhelmed with their nonprofit group service,” Layton reported on her recruitment efforts to attract two more members. And Gogerty said his efforts have met similar results. Potential members are fully committed to other groups or efforts.

Charles-Stigall suggested broadening the search to younger people, who might value the service for their résumés.

Besides a lack of a full committee, members also encountered the frustration of incomplete financial reports for the first two months of the fiscal year. Battalion Chief Mark LaMont thought financial consultant Rob Dennis had committed to complete reports by Oct. 1.

Contributing to the delayed financial information was implementing new accounting software. This project is nearly complete and will improve future reporting, according to Layton. “The new system is fully switched over, but the data posting is incomplete,” added Chief Patrick Reitz.

One example of the incomplete reports was the lack of any revenue, such as for ambulance trips, for the first two months.

The committee did discuss the prospective flier and public meetings to discuss Measure W, which is the district’s proposal to increase the parcel fee. Meetings have been scheduled for late morning and evening on Wednesdays, Sept. 28 and Oct. 5 at Idyllwild Pines Camp.

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