Unspent 2015 money, discounted price give life to warning system proposal
The Village of Saukville ended 2015 in such a strong financial position that village trustees were able to transfer unspent money to cover some future needs.
Trustees have approved $116,500 in general fund transfers, including setting aside $30,000 for an ongoing plan to upgrade the village’s emergency warning siren system.
A staff report prepared last year suggested upgrading the warning system could cost as much as $50,000.
An updated quote submitted by American Signal Corp. of Milwaukee to the Public Safety Committee placed the price of the siren system at $29,630, thanks to a 40% discount offered by the company.
Each of the existing warning devices is more than 20 years old and replacement parts are no longer available.
Because financing was expected to be difficult, the original plan for the higher cost called for the system improvements to be made over four years. That won’t be necessary now, with the price reduction and general fund transfers.
The plan calls for deactivating failing sirens on North Mill Street and the public works grounds, and installing stationary sirens at three locations — Quade Park, Progress Drive and the Walmart area.
“This still needs to go through the committee process, but at least we will have the money available now,” Village Administrator Dawn Wagner told the Village Board earlier in the month.
The purchase was approved by trustees on Tuesday.
The fund transfer will also make $59,000 available as matching funds needed for a stormwater management plan grant.
The remaining transfer money will be used to help pay for two projects trustees previously committed to — $19,500 for website development by CivicPlus and $8,000 toward a five-year financial management plan to be developed by Ehlers Inc.
Wagner outlined how the general fund transfers would be used during the Jan. 5 Village Board meeting, explaining that it made the most sense to have the transfers authorized prior to the village’s year-end audit.
Trustees discussed the pending transfers during deliberations over the 2016 budget.
Even after the funds are allocated, Wagner said the village is projected to have 38% of its operating expenses available as a fund balance.