Recently the Village Board voted to formally provide an official title for a person that has been helping our accounting functions. Her name is Maria Alexeychuk and her new title is Finance Director. We have been using Maria on a part-time, as needed basis, for the last two to three years. She is a Crete-Monee grad with a degree in accounting, a CPA with an additional MBA degree. She replaces our former auditor/accounting consultant Pete Skinger, who retired in late 2010 after over 40 years of faithful service to the Village.
This will be a part-time position, because we currently don’t have the need for a full time person, but I felt that it was proper and necessary to give her an official title and specific job duties and functions within our accounting operation. Everyone on the Village Board agreed, except Mr. Gaffney. Most towns around us have full time Finance Managers. Maria has a wealth of knowledge, having worked in several areas of accounting and she is familiar with our accounting software. She has already used her knowledge to update our entire chart of accounts to DECO standards, which was necessary to fully utilize all the features of our accounting system software. Her immediate assignment will be to begin work on our pre-audit schedules and documents. The audit process begins in June.
I personally spend a great deal of time working on and watching our finances, and I intend to slowly transfer some of what I have been doing to Maria. This will free me up for other issues. Standard and Poor’s Rating Service has recently raised the debt rating for the Village to AA+, their next to highest rating and provided very positive comments about our financial condition and management. I am extremely proud of this accomplishment and it is a testimonial to the attention I pay to finances. This rating increase should also lower our interest rate, in the event we desire to borrow money in the future. I have always been conservative in money management, without going to extremes. Unlike the State of Illinois, our problem is revenue, not spending. Also, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the help I receive from Trustee Mark Wiater. Mark is the Finance, License and Ordinance Trustee and also has a degree in finance. He and I discuss financial issues on almost a daily basis. Mark feels like I do, that Maria will continue to be a valuable asset to the operation of the Village.