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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Feb. 7, 2006

Reorganization of Finance Department announced

City Manager Wayne A. Cauthen today announced plans to reorganize the City's Finance Department. The reorganization is designed to position the department to reengineer its tax collection processes, be more responsive to today's fast-changing accounting environment and provide financial expertise on the City side of development negotiations.

"With the assistance of a new controller and deputy controller for operations, we will standardize operations and streamline accounting and business operations providing best practices in accounting for all City agencies under the direction of the City Manager's Office," Cauthen said.

Other staffing changes include the addition of a manager of development finance to work with the City and other agencies to negotiate complex transactions with financial and development agencies. An external tax audit team will be established under the direction of the newly created tax compliance officer position to support the City's efforts to more aggressively enforce the City's tax code. A business license task force will begin meeting soon to revise the portions of the City's tax code that relate to business licensing and improve the payment process.

In addition, Deb Hinsvark, director of the Finance Department, will assume the additional title of chief financial officer and be responsible for assuring that all City finances are relevant, timely and economically advantageous for the City and meet the standards of the GFOA and GASB.

"These changes will improve accounting and business operations throughout the City," Hinsvark said. "Kansas City will be a better partner in public and private development projects, offer better taxpayer services, collect and enforce tax payment in a fair and equitable manner, and provide a stronger financial base for the City."

Hinsvark also said the cost savings the City will realize will more than offset the additional staffing costs.

    
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