Monday, March 22, 2010

PPD Canines Rule the Region!!

Once again, the City of Pensacola Police Department K-9 teams had to certify at the USPCA Regional Field trials in Lady Lake Fl last week. As always they represented Pensacola in a professional manner and came home with a boatload of recognition and trophies. They competed against 60 other teams in obedience, agility, evidence search, suspect search, criminal apprehension and criminal apprehension with gunfire. We had four teams place in the top twenty overall and brought back the 4-man departmental team trophies we took from Lakeland P.D. last year. These large agencies break a sweat when they see Pensacola show up at a regional certification because they know the Pensacola P.D. K-9 teams are prepared and will consistently come out on top. Congratulations to all.

Randy Rickard and "Charief" 10th place overall
Bruce Harris and "Shedow" 12th place overall
Chris Geraci and "Bady" 13th place overall
Alex Bell and "Rusty" 16th place overall

Chris Geraci and "Bady" 4th place for search work (evidence and suspect search)

Harry Barraclough and "Justus" 1st place agility and 5th place obedience

David Hausner and "Kyros" 2nd place in the Novice division

TOP FOUR MAN DEPARTMENTAL TEAM (2009 and 2010)
Randy Rickard and "Charief
Harry and "Justus"
Bruce and "Shedow"
Chris and "Bady"

Sunday, March 14, 2010

District 3 Beautification Day...Bay Cliffs Again



Thanks to all the citizens of Bay Cliffs that came out on Saturday for Round 2 of Scenic and Brookshire. The differences are almost unbelievable. Our work was the talk of Duffy's Tavern at Saturdays St. Patricks Day extravaganza and I believe that Penacola has added a new Scenic overlook to our Escambia Bay.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Evolution of City's Reserve Policy Document from June 1998

COMMITTEE:Finance
DATE: June 11, 1998
SUBJECT: Fiscal Year 1999 Budget-General Fund Reserve

RECOMMENDATION:
That City Council approve a $2,800,000 General Fund reserve for the fiscal year 1999 budget.
BACKGROUND:
Over the last several fiscal years, the City Manager has recommended and Council has
approved a General Fund reserve in the budget. As part of the fiscal year 1998 budget process, Council requested that they provide prior approval of the recommended reserve amount before it is presented as part of the proposed budget- The following table compares the budgeted General Fund reserve over five fiscal years
Fiscal Year Reserve Amount Percent of GF Revenue
1999___________$2,800,000___________7.5%
1998___________$2,661,800___________7.2%
1997___________$1,600,000___________4.5%
1996_____________$800,000___________2.4%
1995_____________$200,000____________.6%

Most financial literature and rating agencies recommend maintaining a minimum five
percent (5%) General Fund reserve
. However, indications have been, and staff certainly concurs, that a 10 percent (10%) reserve may be advisable due , in large part, to the unpredictability of Pensacola's weather and the resulting impact on General Fund revenues sources. In recommending a $2.8 million reserve, staff took into consideration the stagnant revenue level this fiscal year. and the anticipated revenue growth of 3.2% in fiscal year 1999. Staff believes that holding reserves to a five percent (5%i increase is reasonable given the fact that the proposed General Fund expenditures budgeted for fiscal year 1999 increased by less than one
percent (1%) due to the number of increases departments have been asked to absorb.

FINANCIAL IMPACT:
Adequate reserves enhance the City's financial position and allow for continued current service levels to citizens should unforeseen emergencies or downturns in the economy occur. The City's adequate reserve level has been a factor in the favorable bond ratings we have recently received.

Evolution of City's Reserve Policy Document from Nov 1999

Memorandum
TO:Thomas J. Bonfield, City Manager
FROM: Richard Barker, Jr., Director of Finance
DATE:November 10, 1999
SUBJECT: Financial Planning and Administration Policy

RECOMMENDATION:
That City Council approve an amended Financial Planning and Administration Policy revising General Fund and enterprise funds reserve minimums and the target level of the budgeted ESP transfer to the General Fund.
BACKGROUND:
On July 23,1998, City Council approved the current Financial Planning and Administration Policy.
At this time, several refinements to the policy are being recommended.
General Fund Reserves:
Current policy calls for a desired General Fund reserve of between 10-12 percent of annual revenues. Based on the potential for weather-related revenue shortfalls in the Tax and Franchise Fee Debt Service Fund and Gas Fund impacting transfers to the General Fund, it is prudent to establish a targeted minimum General Fund reserve of 15 percent of annual revenues. The projected reserve balance for FY 2000 is $3,100,000 or 8.49% of budgeted revenues.
Enterprise Fund Reserves:
According to current policy, enterprise fund reserves should be maintained at levels adequate to support the needs of the various enterprises. Under the proposed policy the City Manager will develop and present to Council a reserve implementation plan for each of the enterprise funds. Each plan will include a minimum l5 percent operating reserve. However, based on the volatility of revenues in certain enterprise
funds due to weather or other risk factors beyond our control, the target reserve may be greater than 15%.
Bond covenants will also be considered when developing the reserve implementation plans. In addition to the operating reserve, enterprise funds will also establish capital reserves to ensure that ongoing capital and infrastructure needs are adequately met. In these funds, the reserve goal will be reached by continuing to treat each fund as a full enterprise with revenues and expenditures budgeted at a level that meets fund needs.
ESP Transfer: Currently, the budgeted ESP transfer to the General Fund has a long-term target of 15 - 20 percent of budgeted ESP revenues. The proposed policy eliminates the percentage range and establishes a straight 20 percent target. This will be accomplished by reducing the transfer a minimum of $100,000 each fiscal year
while continuing to expand the customer base.
The minimum level of reserves should be reached in the General Fund and all enterprise funds within eight years. Reduction of the budgeted ESP transfer to 20% of budgeted ESP revenues should be accomplished within the same time frame.
FINANCIAL IMPACT:
The strengthening of reserve policies and reduction of the budgeted ESP transfer will have a positive impact on the continued fiscal stability of the City. Bond ratings may be enhanced and further savings achieved when entering the debt market for future borrowings.

Evolution of the City's Reserve Policy Document from Nov 2006

TO: Thomas J. Bonfield, City Manager
FROM: Richard Barker, Jr., Director of Finance
DATE: November 6,2006
SUBJECT: Amendment to the Financial Planning and Administrative Policy
RECOMMENDATION:
That City Council approve changes to the Financial Planning and Administrative Policy.
BACKGROUND:
The Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA) recommends that, at a minimum,
financial policies in the areas of financial planning, revenue and expenditure policies, be developed by staff,adopted by the governing board and most importantly reviewed during each budget process.
As part of the annual budget process the Director of Finance reviews the City's Financial Planning and Administrative Policy to ensure continued relevance and identify any gaps that should be addressed with new policies. With the Fiscal Year 2007 budget process, there were
three line items within the Policy that were found in need of amending and one new policy was identified to enhance financial planning. The Fiscal Year 2OO7 Annual Budget addresses all three changes in the Budget Message.
The City's Financial Planning and Administration Policy has been amended two times since its adoption in 1998. The last amendment by City Council was September 30,2004' The Policy is published in the appendix of the City's annual budget document.
Amendment #l The General Fund reserve which is used for unanticipated needs and/or emergencies will be amended to include two additional growth factors; proceeds from the sale of surplus real property and annual interest earnings.
Policy
A minimum reserve of 15 percent of budgeted annual revenues should be incrementally
established and maintained in the General Fund for use in meeting unanticipated needs and/or emergencies. Proceeds from the sale of City (general government) owned surplus real property will be used to increase the reserve.
amount of the reserve will be reported in each fiscal year budget.
Amendment#2 The transfer from ESP to the General Fund is being reduced from 20 percent of budgeted ESP revenues to 15 percent.
Policy
It is understood that the citizens of Pensacola are entitled to a return on their investment for the purchase of the natural gas utility from Gulf Power in 1948. However, with the competitive nature of the energy industry the amount of transfer from ESP to the General Fund should be adjusted each year to assure ESP's competitive edge. Long-term, the budgeted transfer should not be more than l5 percent of budgeted ESP revenues. The amount of the transfer will be reported in each fiscal year budget.
FINANCIAL IMPACT:
While there is no direct financial impact by amending the financial policies it will further assure the continual accomplishment of the first of the six strategic goals adopted by City Council: Financially sound,sustainable City government.
should be no more than 3 percent of budgeted revenues.

Florida Government Finance Officers Association

Section 4 - Budgeting Overview –

Budgeting is one of the most important activities undertaken by governments. The budget is a plan of financial operation embodying an estimate of proposed expenditures for a given period and the proposed means of financing them. The budget serves as the primary tool in allocating financial resources to programs and services. This process should involve all stakeholders – elected officials, governmental administrators, employees, citizen groups, and business leaders – and reflect their overall needs and priorities. A budget process that is well-integrated with the other activities of the government and involves those stakeholders will lead to a more efficient and accepted government. Specifically, the budget can serve as a policy making tool, a management tool, a financial tool, and a communication tool. The end result should be a balanced budget that has been well planned and communicated among all stakeholders.

A brief description of the budget cycle is as follows:
Input
a. Elected and appointed officials gather information from citizens, taxpayers and other sources about financial and non-financial priorities
b. Officials meet with staff and convey the goals, objectives, priorities and concerns that will guide the development of the budget.


Preparation
a. Revenues are estimated to determine how much financial resources will be available to fund operations
b. Expenditure requests and forecasts are prepared by the departments
c. The chief administrator submits a proposed budget that reflects the community needs and desires to the local government governing body for review.


Adoption
a. The governing body reviews the proposed budget
b. Proposed budget is approved by governing body
c. Changes are made according to the governing body’s recommendations and public comments
d. The budget is adopted.


Implementation
a. Revenues are collected and expenditures incurred in accordance with the budget
b. The budget may be modified or amended in accordance with procedures established by State law.
Evaluation
a. Internal reports may be prepared as needed for financial data, as well as for performance measurement
b. Other evaluation is done through internal audits, performance audits and external audits.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Partnering with PPD

Over the past year I have worked closely with the PPD to clean up our Scenic Bay Bluffs Park. My first endeavor was an on site visit with Officer Donahoe to assess the CPTED opportunities. CPTED is a law enforcement process of environmental design to deter criminal activity and increase safety. Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design.

The Pensacola Firefighters completed the first CPTED clean up by clearing 8 areas for safety and access within the Bluffs Park. PPD has stepped up patrols, done sting operations and undercover enforcement within the park. The Fire Department donated additional lighting and the PPD increased their camera coverage of the area. Officer Donahoe has done 2 more site visits and identified areas to clear for safety and design in support of the concepts within CPTED.

Recently, while doing a city wide beautification project with the Bay Cliff residents, I became aware of an issue with youth entering the Bay Bluffs Preserve after hours at the North end of the park.

From: Maren Deweese
Sent: Monday, March 01, 2010 8:38 AM
To: Al Coby; David Flaherty
Cc: John Mathis
Subject: Bay Bluffs Park Request

Good Morning,

While doing our city wide beautification at Brookshire & Scenic Hwy this past weekend, I became aware of a situation that may need some work.

The Bay Bluffs Park extends north to Brookshire Dr. The situation is a large group of teens & young adults come from Santa Rosa County (the license plates have been checked by residents) and they park along Brookshire & Montaigne and enter the Bluffs Park on Scenic Hwy at Brookshire.

Residents have contacted the PPD, yet our officers are not aware that the park extends all the way to Brookshire Dr and they tell residents there is nothing they can do to the partying teens since it is private property.

It would be useful to post one of our park closing signs on the Bluffs at Scenic & Brookshire and let the PPD know they can enforce park closure in that area as well. A wooden sign designating the Bay Bluffs Park would be great, yet I know that is more of an investment than the white closure signs.

Please let me know your thoughts as well as any background info you may have.

Thanks for your time and attention to this matter.

til soon,

Maren DeWeese
City Councilwoman District 3


PPD response:

From: John Mathis
Sent: Monday, March 01, 2010 9:27 AM
To: Jay Worley
Cc: Al Coby; David Flaherty; Maren Deweese; Chip Simmons
Subject: RE: Bay Bluffs Park Request

Jay make sure your officers are aware and respond accordingly.

thanks

John W. Mathis
Chief of Police
Pensacola Police Department


The PPD is responsive to resident's requests and addresses enforcement needs within the park and has been the driving force in creating a safe and accessible Bay Bluffs Park.

The citizens of Pensacola now have access to their Bay Bluffs park and can enjoy the natural beauty and experience all the trails the park has to offer.

Monday, March 1, 2010

ESCAMBIA-PENSACOLA CONSORTIUM CDBG/HOME/ESG PROGRAMS

Please take a few minutes to complete this survey. Our housing department is accepting completed surveys until March 15, 2010.

Escambia Consortium is currently in the process of developing its 2010-2014 Consolidated Plan. The City of Pensacola receives approximately $961,000 in federal Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds each year for housing and community development projects. Escambia County receives approximately $2.1 million in CDBG federal funds; approximately $1.8 million in HOME Investment Partnerships Act (HOME) federal funds; and approximately $92,000 in Emergency Shelter Grant (ESG) federal funds.

We would like to get your input regarding housing and community development needs and priorities in your community. You can assist us by completing this survey. We ask that only one survey per resident, business, or agency be submitted.

Please follow the link:

http://www.cityofpensacola.com/upload/images/Housing/2010%20Escambia-Pensacola%20Consortium%20Needs%20Assessment%20Survey.pdf