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Member Relations Corner: Money Saving Programs and Services 

By Rob Shepherd, NCLM Assistant Director of Business Management and Membership Development Services

Did you know the league has several programs and services designed to save money or to assist municipal officials in effectively managing the municipal operations for your town or city? Through the buying power of the League and its members, League staff has been able to negotiate contracts with providers for products and services that meet certain criteria and standards, including superior qualifications and an excellent record of service to municipalities.

These vendors provide programs and services under the League’s general oversight for an added level of quality assurance to our members, and they offer their products or services at a competitive or reduced price that typically can’t be obtained by towns and cities on their own. So, what are these programs and services?

American Legal Publishing provides ordinance codification, code supplementation, electronic publishing, subscriber services, document imaging, online minutes and Internet hosting services to more than 150 NC towns and cities.

Cavanaugh Macdonald provides actuarial services to comply with the requirements established by the Government Account Standards Board (GASB) that requires cities and towns to determine the costs of retiree benefits other than pensions (OPEB) and show them as expenses on financial statements. Additionally, Cavanaugh Macdonald can provide actuarial services to determine the financial liability for providing the state-required Special Separation Allowance for Law Enforcement Officers.

Debt Setoff Clearinghouse is used by League members to collect delinquent debts of $50 or more. Debt information is submitted to the NC Department of Revenue and qualifying debt amounts are deducted from the debtors’ tax refunds and lottery winnings. Unlike traditional debt collection services, there is no fee for NCLM members for this service.

GovDeals is an online auction service provider that helps member cities and towns increase revenue from surplus asset sales and reduce costs attributed to depreciation, local transportation, asset preparation and storage.

GovOffice makes it easy to have a great web presence. Starting a website can be costly, and many websites are cumbersome to update. GovOffice is affordable and easy to use. Staff with no experience can post and update information.

The MAPS Group provides personnel consulting including the development of pay/classification plans, personnel policy review and development, performance appraisal development, organizational and management studies, Fair Labor Standards Act audits, assessment centers, supervisory training and other customized training for the municipal work force.

Municipal Benefits, Inc. provides voluntary insurance plans especially designed to fit the needs of municipal employees. Insurance plans include whole life, cancer, critical illness, short term disability, accident, dental, life and vision.

Prescription Drug Card provides prescription drug benefits to your citizens who are uninsured or underinsured. This benefit can also be used by municipal employees and dependents if they are not covered by the city’s or town’s health insurance plan.

Springsted, Inc. provides organizational & management studies, pay & classification studies, performance appraisal development, personnel policy development, consolidation of services studies (intergovernmental cooperation), privatization of services, financial feasibility analysis, and financial management (utility rates, user fee analysis, debt management, operational finance).

U.S. Communities Governmental Purchasing Alliance (U.S. Communities) is a nonprofit instrumentality of government that reduces the cost of purchased goods through pooling the purchasing power of public agencies nationwide. There is no fee to the municipality for this service, and in almost all cases, purchasing goods and products through this service meets the NC bid requirements without the need for obtaining bids on your own, saving staff the time and effort to develop RFPs, review qualifications, receive and award bids.

VC3 provides a full spectrum of IT solutions and support, including Technology Assessments, Managed Support Services, Hosted Desktop, Hosted and On Premise Voice Services, Website Design and Hosting, Disaster Recovery, Network Security, Technology Consulting and Data Center Services.

For more information about these money saving programs, please contact Rob Shepherd at rshepherd@nclm.org