Over the years, the office of the clerk-treasurer has evolved dramatically, growing from being a bookkeeper and secretary into more of a financial manager with wide-ranging responsibilities that impact and secure the financial well-being of local government.
The Knightstown Clerk-Treasurer serves as the clerk for the town and its town council, and is the town's fiscal officer. Specific powers and duties for this office, defined in the Indiana Code at IC 36-5-6 and in the town's code of ordinances, include, among other things, the following:
*Serving as custodian of the town's records;
*Receiving and caring for all town money, and disbursing funds as approved by the town council;
*Prescribing the manner in which creditors and town officers and employees are paid;
*Managing town finances and accounts, and making investments of town money;
*Preparing proposed annual budgets and tax rates for the town council's consideration;
*Serving as clerk for the town council, attending its meetings and recording the proceedings; and
*Acting as an ex officio member of the town council, casting votes when necessary to break ties.
Like members of the town council, the clerk-treasurer is elected to a four-year term of office and must be a resident of the town. State statute gives clerk-treasurers authority to appoint, with the town council's approval, the deputies and employees needed for the effective operation of the office. Because the Knightstown Clerk-Treasurer is also responsible for the billing and collection of the rates and charges of the town's three utilities, the clerk-treasurer has the sole authority to appoint those employees who are responsible for utility billing and collection.
The executive office function of the office of clerk-treasurer deals with communications, scheduling, technology and innovation, and outreach for the town, while the management function of the office is responsible for personnel files, payroll, budgeting, accounting and facility management. In addition to these two functions, the office of the Knightstown Clerk-Treasurer has two major divisions to fulfill its mandated duties: General Government Accounting Operations; and Utility Business Operations.
Accounting Operations/Utility Business Division
The Accounting Operations division is responsible for paying town officers, employees and vendors; exercises budgetary control of all town funds as authorized by the state and by local ordinance; and controls the release of town funds. This division is comprised of the following sections:
Funds and Appropriations Section
The Funds and Appropriations section performs the accounting function for the town and is responsible for budgetary control of all town funds as authorized by the state and by local ordinance. This section verifies the availability of funds before releasing expenditures for all town departments and establishes budget appropriations with the town's approved annual budget. The Funds and Appropriation section reviews, analyzes and audits all general ledger entries to ensure compliance, and it tracks, forecasts and reports on town receipts, cash flows and debt levels.
Fiscal Oversight and Support Section
The Fiscal Oversight and Support section is responsible for the review and approval of demands (payments) against the town treasury. It establishes townwide policies and procedures regarding receipt of goods and services, payment processing and disbursement of town funds, and is also responsible for the filing and remittance of payroll, sales and use taxes to federal and state agencies.
The Payroll section is the central payroll-processing unit for the town. It ensures that the town processes payroll and pays its employees in a timely manner and in accordance with the town's salary ordinance, department personnel ordinances, memorandums of understanding, and state and federal regulations.
The Paymaster section is responsible for the security, control and disbursement of all warrants (checks) for town vendors, workers’ compensation and payroll. This section is also responsible for enforcing legal wage garnishments against town employees and vendors, and reconciles all warrants issued against warrants paid, taking into account all adjustments. The Check Reconciliation section protects the town by ensuring that banks used by the town only honor the checks issued by the town and not fraudulent checks.
Financial Analysis and Reporting Section
The Financial Analysis and Reporting section is responsible for producing federal, state and local financial compliance reports, and providing financial reports and forecasts to the town council and management.