The Department of Finance is the fiscal office of the City. All receipts and disbursements are administered through this department. Responsibilities include financial planning and reporting, taxation, utility receipts, payroll and retirement systems, cash and investment management, Mayor's Court, Clerk of Council, debt management, risk management support, purchasing, fixed asset management, and records retention.
As a support function, the Finance Department works in partnership with other City departments to develop budgets, implement control measures, and establish policies and procedures aimed at accurately accounting for, safeguarding, and maximizing the value of the City's assets.
Our operations include:
- Collection of revenue – Revenue is collected from a variety of sources including sales tax, property tax, and utility user’s tax. Other sources of revenue include sewer and refuse charges, reimbursements, grant funds, charges for general city services, interest earnings, and intergovernmental payments.
- Distribution of funds – payments are made to vendors for services and material received on a bi-weekly basis. Employee payroll checks and related benefits are paid on a bi-weekly basis mostly through direct deposit. Employee compensation (salary and benefits) is reported annually to the State Controller Office. For a discussion of that process and a link to their website, click on this Employee Compensation link.
- Proper transaction recording – detailed accounting is achieved by recording all financial transactions in the City’s financial accounting system. To segregate transactions, an accounting structure broken down by accounting fund, department, financial account and project designation is utilized. Revenue and Expenditure Account Numbers are unique, are individually budgeted, and performance against these budgets are monitored. Bank reconciliations are prepared monthly agreeing bank balances and investments with the accounting records.
- Financial reporting – Budgetary Comparison Reports are prepared and distributed monthly to department managers and periodically Infrastructure Capital Project Reporting is provided to Public Works for monitoring of construction costs. Annually, the financial statements are prepared and audited by an independent firm of Certified Public Accountants. To review more on this process and access digital copies of the annual audits, click on this Audit Reports link.
Additionally, Recognized Obligation Payment Schedules (ROPS) and administrative allowance budgets are prepared for the Successor Agency to obtain property tax funding for enforceable obligations relating to the elimination of the City's redevelopment agency. To access digital copies of the ROPS and budgets, click on this Successor Agency link.
Budget administration – An annual budget is prepare for all operating funds and activities of the City of Montclair. To review the process and access digital copies of the approved budget, click on this Budget link.
- Debt management – Outstanding debt is administered in full accordance with the Official Statement and Trust Indenture requirements of the bond issuances. Accordingly, principal and interest payments are made based on the debt service schedules and all continuing disclosure reporting requirements are performed.
- Investment of City funds – the City’s idle cash is invested in accordance with the various entities’ approved Investment Polices. Those Investment Policies place particular emphasis on safety, credit risk, market risk, liquidity, and yield. Current investments include the Local Agency Investment Fund (LAIF); and securities issued by the U. S. Government or an agency of the U. S. Government. To review those investment policies click on this Investment Policy link.
- Grant / Contract Administration – Federal, State, and Local grants are administered in accordance with specific grant requirements. Additionally, efforts are made to help secure or renew grant money for capital projects and/or continuing operations to benefit the City and its residents. Grant financial and compliance reporting is done annually and these reports can be viewed by clicking on this Single Audit link.
- Purchasing – Goods and services required to run and operate the City are procured utilizing the City’s Purchasing Manual, in accordance with the City of Montclair’s Municipal Code, which provides the procedures to be utilized in accomplishing acquisitions.
To fulfill these responsibilities, the Finance Department has established and maintains an internal control structure designed to ensure that the assets of the City and other component entities are protected from loss, theft or misuse and that appropriate accounting data is compiled to allow for the preparation of financial statements in conformity with generally accepted accounting principles. To view these click on this Financial Policies link.
Although the Finance Department is generally thought of as a single entity, in reality, it is organized into four distinct functional areas – Accounting and Reporting, Revenue Collections, Payroll, and Accounts Payable.
In an effort to accomplish the department's purpose, a multitude of operational activities occurs each day. These activities are performed by 11 employees serving in varying capacities.