North County Outlook - Community newspaper serving Marysville, Arlington, Tulalip, Smokey Point, Lakewood

State auditor sets audit exit meeting

 


The long awaited state audit exit meeting was scheduled for Monday, March 16, at 3:30 p.m., after Outlook’s presstime.

The city released a special meeting notice last week since a majority of the Arlington City Council was expected to attend the 2013 Financial & Accountability Audit report by the Washington State Auditor’s Office. No other business was planned.

At its March 16 meeting this Monday, Arlington City Council was scheduled to vote on an electronic timekeeping system.

In a study on the city’s financial system, it was recommended to adopt an electronic timekeeping service.

DataPro Solutions is one of the software companies that the city contacted about electronic timekeeping. DataPro Solutions presented their NOVAtime software to staff and submitted a proposal, Executive Paul Ellis said at last Monday’s workshop meeting on March 9.

The proposal largely serves the financial department with automated staff time keeping.

“This group may not be perfect,” Ellis said. “We hope to find a big picture system that works for all departments, later.”

The timekeeping system provides reports and other time saving conveniences.

“Paper time cards are labor intensive,” Ellis told council last week.

Council member Marilyn Oertle asked if it would save costs, but no one wanted to speculate.

“It’s kind of hard to know yet,” Ellis said.

The program also calculates benefits and provides automated reports.

Council member Debora Nelson asked if it would lead to the elimination of a position and was told it would not.

Council member Jan Schuette wondered about security and Council member Chris Raezer suggested it would be more secure than a pager.

After the workshop discussion all agreed to schedule a vote for March 16.

At the March 9, council discussed a contract with Reid Middleton Engineering Design for Arlington Valley Road.

City Engineer Eric Scott explained that staff chose Middleton after a consultant review.

“We are negotiating a contract,” he said on March 9.

The contract was on the March 16 council meeting agenda.

Arlington Valley Road is a proposed 3⁄4 mile road that will connect 67th Avenue to 74th Avenue to provide access to currently undeveloped industrial and manufacturing land. The scope of work in the contract with Middleton was for traffic analysis and design only. The design is expected to be complete by the end of 2015. Construction is anticipated to begin in 2017, pending funding.

Schuette asked about creeks and wetlands and Scott said there were none in the planned route.

Council member Randy Tendering, a school bus driver, said his fellow bus drivers are happy to be able to dodge two railroad crossings.

After workshop discussion last Monday, council agreed to vote March 16 to approve the call for bids for paving of a parking lot at the city’s Public Works office and Haller Park. The project includes an electric vehicle charging station, drainage work to protect the Haller Well Field and picnic shelters.

“That lot is begging for asphalt,” Public Works Director Jim Kelly joked at the workshop meeting.

While the estimated cost is estimated at $170,000 and the city has budgeted $155,000 (from storm water and capital projects funds), the over run is dependent on the bid, Kelly said.

Council was asked by Ellis for permission to apply to the Frontier America’s Best Communities Grant which will be written by a team from Washington State University on behalf of Arlington and Darrington. The proposal is for “connectivity” broadband access for businesses on the west side of Arlington Airport and in Darrington.

Prizes could range from $100,000 up to $3 million, but its a long-term process. Grand prizes will not be announced until April 2017.

As part of this Monday’s consent agenda, council was scheduled to approve a half-a-block street closure on Third Street from Olympic Avenue to the alley for the Sadie Lane Spring Fling on April 11, a request from business owner Ronda Howard. The closure is planned from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.

 

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