Wednesday, April 10, 2013
Ward 1 Alderwoman Maureen Saunders said State Auditor Tom Schweich told her the date.
The state audit of Brentwood’s finances, which began with a residents' petition drive in the summer of 2011, will come to a close in a matter of weeks. The petition drive followed two financial scandals in Brentwood. Ward 1 Alderwoman Maureen Saunders announced in a meeting of her ward that State Auditor Tom Schweich will come to Brentwood May 7 to present the findings. She said she spoke with Schweich before the meeting, who gave her permission to announce the date. She said she had called because the audit was resident-driven, and wanted residents to have a fair amount of time to plan on coming. "We owe it as a courtesy to the state," she said. "They get a lot of requests for these and we petitioned for the audit, so they did the audit …
Friday, September 21, 2012
They haven't had one until recently because visitors have been so rare. Councilwoman Maureen Saunders spoke at the Sept. 5 emergency meeting, and the board president said it went too long.
Wednesday, September 19, 2012
They haven't had one until now because visitors have been so rare. Councilwoman Maureen Saunders spoke at last week's emergency meeting, and the board president said it went too long.
- Doug Miner
Wednesday, September 19, 2012
The Brentwood Library Board now has a policy for visitors to their meetings who would like to speak to the board. At last week’s emergency meeting to discuss the tax rate, which Alderwoman Maureen Saunders attended, there was no board policy for speakers. Board President Sheila Lenkman said visitors’ comments were at the end of the agenda, but Saunders said she wanted to speak before the vote. “Out of courtesy to her, as an alderperson, we decided to let her speak, and that’s when things kind of got crazy,” Lenkman said. “We should have enforced that to five minutes, which is a reasonable time, and unfortunately it went over an hour.” At the board meeting on Monday, discussing a policy for speakers was on the agenda. Library Director Vicki…
Tuesday, September 11, 2012
A vote in last night's meeting made it possible to put the discussion on the agenda of a future meeting. Seemayer's pension, when he reaches 60, is what's at stake.
Close to a hundred Brentwood residents were ready for something to go their way at the board of aldermen meeting last night. They got it at the very end, when alderwoman Maureen Saunders made a motion in an almost “oh by the way” fashion, in the meeting at the Brentwood Recreation Center. “And another thing,” she said, after agreeing to a time change for a joint ward meeting, “In listening to the residents, I am going to go ahead and make a motion that this board pursue civil action against Chris Seemayer.” When Seemayer was found guilty last year of embezzling $30,000 from the city of Brentwood to pay gambling debts, he was allowed to resign instead of being fired, making it possible for him to get sick and vacation pay, and receive an …
Friday, September 7, 2012
The Hancock amendment had reduced the library tax over the years, which complicated the increase approved by voters in August.
Brentwood residents will pay the tax they were told they would pay when they passed Brentwood’s Proposition L on August 7. That may seem obvious, and right, but getting there wasn't easy. The decision was the result of heated discussions at the Ways and Means Committee meeting Tuesday and a quickly-called library board meeting Wednesday. At issue, was the definition of the rate residents are currently paying. They are paying approximately 15 cents per $100 of valuation, but it could have been more. That’s because the same year Brentwood voters last approved a library tax levy, 1984, the Hancock Amendment went into effect, which rolled back taxes. So while voters approved a 25-cent rate, they never actually paid it. So in August, voters …
Kramer hasn't been happy with Brentwood's low reserve, and doesn't like mayor Kelly's idea of taxing residents as a possible fix.
Brentwood alderman Tom Kramer says the city's budget reserve is insufficient. Kramer is on the Brentwood Ways and Means Committee, and the reserve was a topic of discussion at Tuesday's meeting. Maureen Saunders, also on the committee, said there is less than a month's expenses in reserve. Kramer said he's brought it up over the years, and has been told not to worry, because residents are not taxed on things they could be taxed on, which would bring in revenue if needed. Kramer further explained his statement in an email to Patch. "For years, the city has not assessed, nor collected residential real estate taxes or residential utility taxes. We could, but we don’t. "Our residential property tax rate is zero. Our residential utility taxes …
Wednesday, September 5, 2012
Ways and Means committee members are not happy with the city's small reserve.
The departments of the city of Brentwood will soon be working out budgets for the upcoming year. Alderwoman Maureen Saunders and others on the Ways and Means Committee at a meeting Tuesday night, discussed an aspect of the budget they're not happy with: the city has less than one month's expenses in reserve. Saunders said the residents have been given the wrong impression over the years. "My concern is that, the residents felt that we were swimming in money," she said. "Time after time people came to this podium and talked about money being spent by the city. (They were told), 'No big deal. It’s insignificant,' and yet we only have a half a month's reserve." Saunders told her constituents in an email that the general fund balance at the …
Monday, August 27, 2012
Public Works chairman Keith Robertson suggested combining all the city functions at what is now the rec center in a discussion on the future of the Brentwood Recreation Complex.
The Aug. 20 Brentwood Board of Aldermen meeting started an hour early to devote time to hopefully come closer to a decision on the Brentwood Recreation Center. The recreation center is decades old and in need of repair. The city is attempting to decide what to do with the building. The process has taken years. The Brentwood Public Works Committee: chairman Keith Robertson, Andy Leahy, Cindy Manestar and Maureen Saunders talked through the subject with Mayor Pat Kelly and other aldermen, and in the end, the entire board passed a motion similar to the agreement made at the Public Works Committee meeting on Aug. 8. Public Works Committee chairman Keith Robertson began by saying the committee discussed the possibility of combining the …
Thursday, August 23, 2012
A proposal to use comment cards in Board of Aldermen meetings were in five of the weekly city administrator’s reports.
It seems the concern about residents needing to fill out comment cards before speaking in a Brentwood Board of Aldermen meeting was unfounded. It was reported on Aug. 10 in Maplewood-Brentwood Patch that City Administrator Bola Akande had made the suggestion. In the Aug. 20 Board of Alderman meeting, mayor Pat Kelly said they won’t be used in Board of Aldermen meetings. “I don’t like them,” he said. “I don’t think it’s appropriate.” He said the Public Safety Committee had started using comment cards, and City Administrator Bola Akande took the initiative to propose using them for Board of Aldermen meetings. Alderwoman Cindy Manestar, by email on Wednesday, said the suggestion was included in the weekly (every Friday) city administrator’s …
Wednesday, August 22, 2012
The city attorney convinced them their July 16 vote wasn't good enough.
The Brentwood Board of Aldermen came to the Aug. 20 meeting with a revised agenda. An item to end health care benefits for elected officials by ordinance was on the table. The board voted in the July 16 meeting to end the health care benefit, but it was not an ordinance. Alderwoman Maureen Saunders immediately moved to remove the item and send it back to the ways and means committee. Alderwoman Cindy Manestar seconded it. Saunders said Alderman Tom Kramer, at the Aug. 7 ways and means committee meeting, brought forward the idea of ending the benefit by ordinance, instead of letting it end as a result of the July 16 vote. Kramer said he had been contacted by more than one attorney after the July 16 vote to end the benefit, and he contacted …