Mayor Hickenlooper Announces Financial Management Task Force

Mayor Hickenlooper Announces Financial Management Task Force

Monday, March 13, 2006

Lindy Eichenbaum Lent, Mayor’s Office
Department of Revenue

Mayor Hickenlooper Announces Financial Management Task Force

External Group of Experts Will Analyze City’s Financial Functions and Reserve Policies
(DENVER) Mayor John Hickenlooper announced Monday the creation of a Financial Management Task Force to develop recommendations on improving the organizational structure of the City’s financial functions and creating fiscally sound reserve policies.

“Our goal is to always be responsible stewards of the taxpayers’ money, continually looking for ways to find efficiencies and strategies to leverage our limited resources,” Hickenlooper said. “With that in mind, we feel it is important to have outside experts with both private- and public-sector experience evaluate opportunities for improving the City’s longstanding financial structures, processes and policies. We are grateful that this high-caliber group will donate their time and expertise to this important undertaking.”

  • Based on Denver’s 1904 charter, the City’s current organizational structure of financial functions is decentralized and fragmented, with various financial functions (i.e., general accounting, procurement, banking, investment, debt management, risk management, budgeting, internal auditing, external auditing) being carried out by the City’s Treasurer, Manager of Revenue, Director of Finance, Controller, Manager of General Services and Auditor. According to KPMG, the City’s outside auditor, the current structure creates risks in internal controls and financial reporting and appears to be inefficient in various ways. The City underutilizes the enterprise financial and human resources management system because of its unique business processes. The Task Force will evaluate the City’s current organizational structures and financial processes, review financial organization structures from other cities as well as literature on best practices on financial organization before making their recommendations.


  • There has also been debate on the amount of reserves that should be set aside for the General Fund. There are also a number of special purpose reserves including the Fleet Replacement Fund, the Information Technology Special Revenue Fund, Liability Claims, Grant Development, Radio Replacement, PC Replacement, and Risk Management that need to be evaluated. After evaluating the City’s current reserve situation, surveying other cities’ reserve requirements and reviewing reserve policy best practices, the Task Force will develop recommendations on the appropriate amount of reserves for the General Fund and under what circumstances it can be expended. They will identify other reserves that may be necessary and determine where and how they should be established and maintained.


Also on Monday, Mayor Hickenlooper announced that current Manager of Revenue Cheryl-Cohen Vader has accepted a mayoral appointment as Chief Deputy Director of Denver International Airport, beginning April 1, 2006. City Treasurer David Hart will serve as Interim Manager of Revenue while the Financial Management Task Force evaluates opportunities for improvements within the City’s financial organizational structure. (Information on the DIA leadership team is provided in a separate press release, also available at

“Cheryl Cohen-Vader has done an amazing job in her 10 years as Denver’s Manager of Revenue, ensuring that our bond ratings remained strong, our investments remained smart, and our debt remained well-managed,” Hickenlooper said. “Her financial management expertise will be a tremendous asset for Denver International Airport.”

The Financial Management Task Force, which is expected to meet for three months, includes the following individuals:

John Bliss
Former Vice President for Budget & Finance, Colorado State University System
Former Joint Budget Committee Deputy Staff Director, State of Colorado

Jeff Campos
President, Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
Former Partner, New York Life Insurance (Denver)

Linda Clark
Managing Director of Investment Banking, Piper Jaffray
Former Senior Vice President & Manager of Public Finance, Boettcher & Company

Deborah DeMuth
Director of CollegeInvest, State of Colorado’s self-supporting education financing resource
Certified Public Accountant serving on Denver’s Audit Committee

Albert C. Gonzales
President/Owner, Gonzales Consulting Services, Inc. (financial mgmt. & IT services)
Certified Public Accountant

Wayne Hutchens
Chairman, Chase Bank in Colorado
President & CEO, University of Colorado Foundation (starting April 1)

Alan Krcmarik
Finance Manager, City of Loveland; Past CO President, Govt. Finance Officers Assoc.
Former Financial Officer & Budget Director, City of Ft. Collins
Former Senior Policy Analyst, Denver’s Finance Department

Gary Reiff
Shareholder and Corporate & Securities Group co-chair, Brownstein, Hyatt and Farber

Scott Reiman
President, Hexagon Investments

Daniel Yohannes
Vice Chairman, U.S. Bancorp
Former President & CEO, U.S. Bank - Denver

# # #

Posted on Mar 13, 2006 (Archive on Apr 12, 2006)
Posted by kpellegrin  Contributed by kpellegrin