Council OKs Sunday liquor change

The New Prague City Council gave its approval for changing the city’s Sunday liquor law, moving up the serving time to 10 a.m. The council considered the proposed change in the Sunday ordinance at its Monday, May 20, meeting. A public hearing was held during the meeting, although no comments were offered. The previous law for Sunday liquor had hours of operation from 12 noon to 1 a.m.

City Administrator Mike Johnson explained this was the second reading of the changed ordinance, which will go into affect 30 days after the publication of a notice in this issue of The Times.

Mayor Chuck Nickolay had brought up the proposal at the April 15 council meeting. He explained that during a visit to Montgomery he noticed their start time for Sunday liquor was 10 a.m. His intent for making the change was to help benefit New Prague businesses that serve food and liquor.

A memo from Police Chief Mark Vosejpka explained the change applies to both 3.2 percent malt liquor and intoxicating liquor. The change in the ordinance was approved 4-0. Council member Dave Bruzek, who had voiced opposition at past meetings, was absent.

2012 Audit The council accepted the 2012 annual financial report, or audit, from Abdo Eick & Meyers LLP.

The council heard a brief overview from Kyle Meyers of the firm. Among his highlights was that the unassigned fund balance for the city’s general fund was $1.9 million, or 53.2 percent, of total general fund expenditures. The decrease in fund balance for the year was $275,151. Key factors in this decrease were the forgiveness of the advance to other funds as well as actual revenues exceeded budget by $235,592 and expenditures were under budget by $52,452. He also noted that the city had savings.

Johnson said the city refunded, or refinanced, its bonds. He noted it’s like when a person refinances their house to get a lower interest rate. The city was able to replace its current interest with a lower one.

"We saved the taxpayers nearly $600,000 in principal interest," he said.

Golf Contract Incentive The council approved an incentive payment of $9,563 to Golf Management Enterprises (GME), LLC.

The city has a consultant agreement with GME for the New Prague Golf Club. According to the contract, "incentive concept's" any amount owed to GME is calculated based on two factors. The first factor requires year-end operating revenue to exceed the previous year’s operating revenue, and the second factor requires year-end operating income (after adding back depreciation) to be positive.

After completing the 2012 audit it was found that operating revenue for 2012 had a 10 percent increase of $63,752 over 2011. For the second factor, while there was a net operating loss of $66,384, adding back depreciation of $107,674 (a noncash expenditure) the result is a positive for 2012 of $41,290. Council member Pat Scripture realized this was part of the contract, but she had issues with giving them a bonus when the city was still giving them tax money. The city helps the Golf Club with its expenses.

Mayor Nickolay said if the Golf Club was going to improve they had to help.

The incentive payment was approved 4-0 with Scripture noting she was voting in favor because of the contract.