Rockton Township discusses new technology and finances
In the future, could people reach Rockton Township online by sending a message to RocktonTownshipIL.gov? Township
Sexton and IT consultant Chris Doering provided information at a recent meeting: “It will cost $350 a
year to get a .gov to use as a domain; along with hosting an email. [The domain itself would be free.] This gives people a sense of security. We are not looking at adding
an additional website; we already have the TOI (https://www.toi.org/township/winnebago-county-rockton-township/) The domain name could be redirected to the TOI website," Doering said.
“Everyone who uses an email in the Township would have a .gov [address].”
Trustee Connie Gleasman asked, “Why would we need both with the TOI?”
“We would have wizards and no other email would be provided, we could do our own website.... We can get correspondence off of the Gmail account and we can create an email policy," Doering added. The Township currently uses [email protected] as an email address.
Supervisor Paul Williams recommended proceeding toward changing to a .gov option.
Gleasman asked if going forward this would be put in the budget. “We are not supposed to authorize anything unless it is a line item in the budget,” Gleasman said.
Next on the agenda was the possibility of the Township purchasing a Square credit/debit card reader processor. It was stated that post-pandemic, we have become more of a cashless society. A card reader might be used to pay for cemetery services. Township officials talked about options of a strip or a chip reader.
Trustee Gene Hermann inquired about the fee for the hardware. Square provides a mag strip reader at no cost and the cost of a chip reader is $40. Ideally it would be used at Office Assistant Michelle Sheik's computer.
Trustee Vicky Ivy said, “It can also be hooked up to a computer.”
Gleasman asked how the Township accounting aspect is being handled. Siepert CPA Mark Trotter replied, “When a credit or debit is used as a method of payment, there will be a separate checking account set up and used.” He also talked about how transactions would be handled and how they can be tracked. “Quick Books should have a credit card receivable account."
Gleasman referred to income from Community Center rentals. Williams would have to sign off on any refunds. Herman asked how accounts would be deciphered. Gleasman asked about tracking transactions of items purchased. Sheik said some might want to pay an average of four or five times per month.
Doering said, “They take 2.6 percent off of each transaction."
The board voted to buy and to obtain credit card equipment.
The board reviewed prior meeting minutes from 2002 before restarting a discussion on the employee handbook and the vacation holiday pay policy.
"There is no clear definition of why this was put in place, this other one seems to be out of place; it has no revision or amendment from the employee handbook," Hermann said.
Gleasman suggested that a committee be put together to review the employee handbook. "We could look at other issues while reviewing the vacation pay, and we could bring it back to a meeting. That way we won't have to take our time here.”
Herman backed Gleasman's idea and reiterated some of her remarks, adding, “We could earmark certain pages.”
Trotter gave an overview of the FY 2021 audit. “I have issued an Internal Continual Governance Letter to the board," Trotter said. “The audit went very well. The most important thing is the Independent Audit Report, where everything is in a modified basis of accounting." He spoke about government-wide fixed assets, segregation of duties, and the importance of budgeting. Another heading covered was risk assessments.
Trotter advised that officials look into seeing if the state is holding any cash value for them. MFT (motor fuel tax) activity has been recorded. "A budget versus an actual analysis is very important," Trotter said.
Hermann asked about a treasurer's report to allow the board to better see what their accounts are. “The cash report is balanced at the end of the month,” Trotter responded.
Herman asked about helping the historical societies. It was stated that the Township was going to set aside money to be divided three ways. Trotter advised that the Township call the state. “It is a good gesture to support our historical societies," Hermann added.
General Assistance is working with residents on Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). The Township's website will be updated.
Hermann attended the Township Officials of Illinois (TOI) meeting and reported that it was very informative and full of good information.
During the cemetery sexton's report, Doering said, “This is the first year that the cemetery has been self sustaining."
A car went through the fence at the cemetery, causing posts to need replacement. There were 45 burials; 23 spaces and seven plots were sold.
As discussed at the Township's January meeting, Road Commissioner Trenton Keyhoe committed to taking over the mowing at the cemetery. But he added, "I would like to purchase one more lawn mower and a weed whacker at a cost of $7,500."
Keyhoe and a crew will be taking over duties from Executive Lawn Services.
"Executive did a super job," Williams lauded. “By doing this in-house, it will save us money and will benefit the highway.”
A 30 day notice is required to release Executive Lawn Care from their contract. The board voted to move forward, with Gleasman abstaining.
“We have put funding aside to help with funding the new Old River Road bike path,” Williams said.
The Highway Department has been cutting back trees where needed.
Ivy spoke about Black History Month and is planning to do a special presentation at the March meeting.