Audit finds city in great standing

Leslie D. Rose @Editor_Citizen
City of Gonzales Mayor and Council.

Mayor Barney Arceneaux and his councilman received the findings of the city's regular audit donebyPostlethwaite & Netterville at the Oct. 24 City of Gonzales regular council meeting.

The audit results were all positive revealing diligent accounting and budgeting done by the city. A representative of the accounting firm said that in his opinion Gonzales ranks high among other cities, with an adequate fund balance and is well-capitalized.

The full audit showed no grievances in internal controls.

In the area of financial statements, there were no material weaknesses or significant deficiencies identified. The result in the area is unmodified which is a clean opinion.

The Federal awards category, which includes grants or subsidized loan programs, also showed no material weaknesses or significant deficiencies for an unmodified result.

When asked to remark on the audit, city clerk Clay Stafford thanked the city's finance department for their diligent work. He also noted he had nothing to add to the review.

"He hit all the high points and that's pretty much the picture," Stafford said.

The city entered the fiscal year with $12 million.

In other business, flood recovery funds were discussed.

City engineer Jackie Baumann alerted the council that she has begun project management meetings with All South Consulting, who in turn said that the information the city has provided them is excellent. The consulting firm expects a reimbursement of 90 percent. Baumann also met with FEMA and GOHSEP representatives to transmit documents.

In sewer upgrades, Baumann noted that the Regional Lift Station and Force Main construction is underway with all of the pipe being laid. The project is part of the city's DEQ Loan of $15 million. Only one other project remains under the loan - treatment plant upgrades, where minor adjustments to the plans are underway.

In the DPW report, it was reported that the DMV project is 98 percent complete (at the time of the meeting). DPW also noted that there are two fields that will require leveling.

A motion was passed to accept the Resolution of the City of Gonzales to offer an endorsement of the participation of A & T Enterprises, LLC in the Louisiana Tax Abatement Program. Under the agreement, the company will have a five year state tax abatement.

Minutes from the recreation meeting held on Oct. 10 were read.

At the meeting, Commissioner Donnie Gautreau reported that the concession stand at Bergeron Gaudin Field has been cleaned up from the flood and Coca Cola has replaced the refrigerators. He also noted that the new lights at Carver Park have been installed and will soon be activated.

The council passed a motion for the Recreation Committee to use $55,000 of its budget to secure a bunker rake, aerator, sod cutter, top dresser and utility vehicle to maintain fields.