Selma City Council Nov 2020

The Selma City Council at their first organizational meeting on Nov. 12. They now meet via Zoom.

Selma City Council is scheduled to talk to accountants on Wednesday to get a handle on the city's troubled finances.

At its work session on Jan. 7 via Zoom, Finance Committee Chairman Troy Harvill said he has spoken with Birmingham accounting firm BMSS to help the council “get their arms around” the city’s finances. BMSS will join the Finance Committee in a meeting at 5 p.m. on Wednesday via Zoom.

“There is a sense of urgency,” Harvill said. “Our finances are in peril.” 

BMSS is a top 3 accounting firm in Alabama with 10,500 clients, according to their website. “They have helped several municipalities, including Leeds, clean up financial messes,” Harvill said.  

Harvill last month suggested the city hire a CPA firm to help the council sort out finances before hiring a city treasurer to replace Ronita Wade, whose contract was not renewed in December.

Harvill said he gave BMSS a copy of two recent audits of the city, both of which found a profound lack of procedures and record keeping. 

Perkins said he anticipated having a draft of the 2021 budget ready for the council to review on Tuesday. 

Perkins said he will bring before the council a resolution to engage former Tax Director Ross Gosby to help the office get property taxes and business license fees in faster. He said paying Gosby $2,500 a month for two months will help “bridge the knowledge gap” in the office and help the city catch up on tax and licensing fees. 

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