“City Government 101” is an ongoing series that debuted in April 2023 and highlights different aspects of municipal government as it pertains to Columbus, Nebraska, in hopes to provide information on how the City of Columbus operates.
Every City of Columbus department head was recently asked some questions in regard to their department, the current fiscal year budget and plans for their department in the upcoming fiscal year (Oct. 1, 2023-Sept. 30, 2024).
DEPARTMENT HEAD: Heather Lindsley
(Interview conducted in September 2023)
Q: How many people are in your department?
Q: How long have you been head of your department?
A: 5 ½ years.
Q: How do you think things went for your department in fiscal year 2022-2023?
A: Things went well. We had to replace an employee who moved out of town. Jacie has done a great job and picked up everything very fast. She’s eager to take on projects and is very accurate. Laura continues to do a great job with accounts payable. She’s extremely efficient and processes hundreds of invoices, each month, all by herself. Many companies, our size, have more than one person. This is a testament to great personnel and solid software!
Q: What were at least two of your department’s biggest accomplishments in the last fiscal year (why)?
A: The majority of our year is spent on the audit and the budget. Both of these events are major undertakings for the Finance Department. The audit was a struggle, but the budget process went well and we continue to improve the process, every year.
Q: What are some of the problems your department faced in the last fiscal year and how did you overcome them?
A: Our biggest issue, was the audit. We had a difficult time getting our auditors, on site, to complete the audit. They cancelled twice and then relied on working remotely. They submitted the audit late, to the State Auditor. In the end, we decided to go with a new audit firm, for the 2022-2023 fiscal year.
Q: What are at least 3 major things you’re wanting your department to accomplish in fiscal year 2023-2024 and how is the new budget going to improve that?
A: This next year, I expect the Finance Department to continue to be as efficient as possible. I expect that the audit will be a much smoother process and we will continue to prepare a balanced budget.
Q: What can the public expect from your department in the next fiscal year?
A: The public can expect accurate, efficient reporting from the Finance Department.
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