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Elgin Council discusses purchase of business module

Posted: August 5, 2016 9:16 a.m.
Updated: August 5, 2016 9:16 a.m.

Elgin Town Council continued to discuss the purchase of a business module with Nicholson Business System at Tuesday’s night council meeting. The module would provide services such W2 bank reconciliation, business licenses, building permits and accounting services. Several municipalities in the state currently use the system for town business.

Nicholson Business System owner Don Nicholson attended Tuesday’s meeting to answer questions from council members about the system.  

“I was hoping council could make a decision tonight, if we wanted to pursue purchasing this program or if we just want to table it for another time. I felt him being here would help to move along the process since he could answer questions,” Elgin Mayor Melissa Emmons said.

Councilman Brad Hanley asked Nicolson how other towns allocate accounting duties when using the modules.

“I’ve liked what we’ve seen so far, and I like the fact you have so many (municipal) clients ... What I am unclear about is the separation of accounting duties for internal control purposes. Do you know how any other towns are set up? Normally you don’t want to set your system up where one person does everything,” Hanley said.

Nicholson replied that depended on different factors such as staff size and the preference of the town. 

“It varies on the size of the town and the staff. Some people don’t have the choice but to let one person do that,” Nicholson said.

Hanley then said he would first want to speak with the town’s accounting firm, Dooley and Company to ask how the system could be set up for internal control purposes before council made a decision. He stated he believed the firm would be willing to help and anticipated council approving the system. 

 “I think everyone is very well pleased for what we’ve heard and seen,” Hanley said.

During council briefing Councilwoman Dana Sloan announced there would be a Potter Park Committee meeting at town council on August 25, 6 p.m. at Elgin Town Hall. Items for discussion include collecting bids for the construction of a walking track and purchasing Christmas lights for the park.

Councilman Edward Smith requested that public forum rules be held constant during his council briefing. “Public Forum is a great thing, it’s great to hear some feedback concerning our agendas but we do have a guideline we need to following. In the future we can follow the guidelines (of having to sign up) and not just allow someone being able to come such as the last meeting we had,” Smith said.

Emmons replied the person who came forward last meeting was a public official who gave a briefing to which Smith replied he took issue with because the official was not on the public forum.

Hanley suggested a motion be made to consider changing the policy to allow elected officials to speak.

“I think any elected official that we work with or has partnered with us needs to be able to speak to us at their convenience,” Hanley said after making the proposal.

Council voted to change the policy where public forum sign up is waved for active elected officials

During Hanley’s council briefing, he addressed a former employee’s “bashing” Elgin Town Council on social media. Hanley said the posts made him consider the public is uninformed on council’s duties.

 “It occurred to me people in town might not know what we really do. This (council) meeting is just the tip of the iceberg. Everybody here serves on committees and we work with other people in Kershaw County and the communities … All of those meetings take time,” Hanley said describing some of the specific duties of council members,  

“I just want everybody to know that this council works hard for this town and always has for a good number of years ... There is free speech but there are consequences to it as well. We will see what those are,” Hanley said.

During Emmon’s council briefing, Emmons announced a back to school bash by Women of Wakening Wisdom on Saturday at Potter Community Park.

“They will be giving away school supplies. There is a need, (so) to have something like that in our community is wonderful,” Emmons said.

Emmons also announced an upcoming community building day with the town of Bethune.

“We had a Community Build Day this past Saturday and we will be joining Bethune this weekend from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. There will be landscaping needs and wooden fences that need to be removed. If you are available they would love to have the help,” Emmons said.

Emmons also asked people to drive carefully on August 17, the first day of school.

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