Job Details

Finance Director
City of Seward, AK
Job Description


Serves as the Chief Financial Officer of the City, responsible for planning, directing, managing and overseeing activities and operations of all financial aspects of the City including, but not limited to, planning, coordinating and directing the budgetary, accounting, debt service, financial planning, financial reporting, auditing, revenue collection, disburse¬ments, utility billing, property and asset management, risk management, investment, capital financing, and purchasing activities of the City. This is a hands-on position requiring high-level accounting knowledge, the ability to create financial statements, the ability to fill in for any other position in the department during periods of staffing shortages, etc. Direct supervision is exercised over the Deputy Finance Director and the Accounting Supervisor, with overall responsibility for supervision of all employees in the finance department. Substantial latitude is granted for the exercise of independent judgment and initiative. In the absence of the City Manager, an employee in this class may temporarily assume responsibility for duties of the City Manager. The nature of the work performed requires that an employee in this class establish and maintain effective working relationships with the City Council, City Manager, department heads, investment and lending institutions, banking institutions, Federal and State agencies, the media, other municipal finance officers, local vendors and suppliers, customers, and the public.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:
Advises the City Manager and City Council on all financial matters of the City, including the financial condition of all funds of the city;

Invests funds consistent with the principles of safety, liquidity, and maximum yield, according to standard financial practices and in accordance with the City’s authorized investment policies;

Coordinates short-term financing including capital leases, loans and grants, as well as long-term financing including, but not limited to, general obligation and revenue bonds, lease certificates of participation and other debt instruments. Develops bonding proposals and coordinates the sale, refunding, and redemption of general obligation and revenue bonds;

Prepares the biennial operating and capital budgets and assists the City Manager in presenting them to the Council. Advises and assists department managers in the preparation and revision of budgets and in forecasting projections. Exercises budgetary control and reporting over all departments;

Prepares management and budget reports as directed, and prepares the annual Comprehensive Annual Financial Report in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles and Government Finance Officer’s Association Standards and Statements. Makes analyses, studies and projections as required. Coordinates the internal audit function of the City, including matters such as accounting systems, petty cash, credit card acceptance, electronic pay stations, etc. Certifies record accuracy and budget compliance;

Coordinates all audit activities with the auditing firm, provides on site coordination with audit staff, prepares audit letters, footnotes as required, the statistical portion of the financial report and other documents as required;

Hires, trains, assigns, prioritizes, supervises, disciplines, motivates and evaluates the work of all department personnel and oversees the professional and technical development of supervised staff;

Provides oversight of the City’s pay plan. Serves as Chair of the wage committee.

Prepares Resolutions and Council Agenda Statements and reviews same for all departments to ensure the accuracy of fiscal impacts and appropriation of funds;

Develops financial, accounting, purchasing, utility billing and debt policies and procedures;

Oversees disbursement of all funds, property accountability, the financial administration of all Federal and State grants, the accuracy of accounting records, the safekeeping of cash and investments, and the payroll function;

Manages electric utility and water/sewer utility customer accounts and billing function;

Represents the City of Seward in Court on legal matters related to issues such as small claims, bankruptcy, lawsuits, and contract disputes;

Issues and/or reviews contracts and requests for proposals for finance-related matters, including banking services, audit services, capital financing, and accounting-related computer hardware and software;

Reviews and analyzes the impact of proposed legislation;

Establishes and maintains financial, billing and accounting systems for the City, which meet or exceed professionally accepted standards for governmental accounting systems, and assists other departments with the development and implementation of financial systems and cash management policies and procedures;

Serves as the City’s liaison on all healthcare related matters, and may represent the City on boards including the City-owned hospital, clinic and long-term care facilities.

Fulfills the duties and responsibilities established by Section 2.25.045 of the Seward City Code.

Performs other related work as assigned.

Supervisory Responsibilities:
Directly supervises all positions in the Finance Department. Responsibilities include interviewing, hiring, training employees; planning, assigning, and directing work; appraising performance; rewarding, disciplining, and terminating employees; addressing complaints and resolving problems.

Qualification Requirements:
To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

Education and/or Experience:
Bachelors’ degree from an accredited college or university in accounting, finance, business administration, public administration, management or closely related field. Ten years of government financial management and fund accounting experience which includes at least five years supervisory experience. Certified Public Finance Officer or Certified Government Financial Manager designation desirable. Demonstrated experience in the following: municipal finance; fund accounting; public agency budgeting; auditing; risk management; public sector treasury and investment management; debt service management; financial analysis; operations of automated, integrated financial management systems; and general management.

Progressive Development:
Each year on the anniversary date, the employee will be evaluated not only on performance, but also on professional development. The city manager shall determine if the employee has received the required training and experience to advance from a range 26 to a 27, then from a range 27 to a 28, then from a range 28 to a 29, remaining at the same step. After the employee reaches a range 29, the employee shall remain at that range and receive annual step increases, if earned, in the regular sequence. If it is determined that the employee has not progressed to the next level, but has shown above satisfactory performance, he/she will be granted the regular merit increase of one step.

Upon providing documentation of satisfactory completion of two of the following, the employee will advance to the next range (i.e. from 26 to 27 or from 27 to 28 or from 28 to 29):

• Attendance at national Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA) conference to include two pre-conference sessions;
• Completion of the full complement of intermediate and advanced governmental accounting courses offered through the Government Finance Officers Association;
• Attendance at Government Investment Officer’s Association (GIOA) conference to include two pre-conference sessions;
• Completion of at least two full budget and audit cycles with the City of Seward (in the role of finance director);
• Completion of investment training with the national GFOA or have completed a master’s level investment class in fixed-income securities and investments;
• Designation as Certified Government Finance Manager (CGFM) through the Association of Government Accountants;
• Designation as Certified Public Finance Officer (CPFO) through the GFOA;
• Designation as Certified Government Investment Professional (CGIP) through GIOA;
• Designation as a Certified Public Accountant;
• Master’s degree in Finance, Public Administration, Business Administration, Accounting, or related field.

Language Skills:
Ability to read, analyze and interpret general business periodicals, professional journals, technical procedures and governmental regulations. Ability to write reports, business correspondence and procedure manuals. Ability to effectively present information and respond to questions from groups of managers, clients, customers and the general public.

Mathematical Skills:
Ability to add, subtract, multiply and divide, using whole numbers, common fractions and decimals. Ability to work with mathematical concepts such as probability and statistical inference. Ability to apply concepts such as fractions, percentages, ratios and proportions to practical situations. Ability to conduct complex financial analyses and complete tasks such as cost-benefit analyses, accounting for complex bond transactions, balancing the budget, conducting financial trend analysis, etc.

Reasoning Ability:
Ability to define problems, collect data, establish facts and draw valid conclusions. Ability to interpret an extensive variety of technical instructions in mathematical or diagram form and deal with several abstract and concrete variables.

Public Relations:
Public relations shall be an integral part of each employee’s job. Employees shall be courteous, helpful and conduct themselves in a manner which is appropriate for an employee in public service.

Other Skills and Abilities:
Extensive knowledge of principles and practices of local government accounting, investments of public funds, ordinances and statutes governing the receipt, accounting, disbursement, and investment of public funds; supply and purchasing methods and procedures; public financing; public budgeting; and other local government financial matters.

Ability to: function with a high degree of independence; lead a staff of professional, technical and clerical personnel; serve as the expert financial advisor to the City Manager and the Council; work as part of the City’s administrative team to creatively solve city-wide problems; work with computers including complex software applications including financial accounting systems, utility billing applications, fixed asset programs, spreadsheets, word processing, graphics; conduct long-range fiscal planning and budgeting; prepare accurate and reliable reports containing facts, findings, conclusions and recommendations; and communicate well with others, both orally and in writing, using both technical and non-technical language. Ability and willingness to quickly learn and put to use new skills and knowledge resulting from rapidly changing information and/or technology;

Physical Demands:
The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to sit and use hands to finger, handle or feel objects, tools or controls. The employee frequently is required to reach with hands and arms and talk or hear. The employee is occasionally required to stand; walk; and stoop, kneel, or crouch.

The employee must frequently lift and/or move up to 10 pounds and occasionally lift and/or move up to 25 pounds. Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, color vision, peripheral vision, depth perception, and the ability to adjust focus. The position typically requires long hours of sitting and frequent computer usage.

Work Environment:
The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job.

The noise level in the work environment is usually moderate. The stress level of the job is high and requires the ability to multi-task; deal with diverse groups of policy makers, stakeholders, customers; make public in-person and televised public presentations; resolve personnel disputes; work effectively within a political system to meet demands of various user groups; maintain confidentiality.

Attendance at evening council meetings and work sessions may be required. Frequent travel on City business may also be required.

Job Details
$82,293 - $119,117, Annual, DOE
Job Function:
Finance Director
Position Type:
Full Time
City of Seward
PO Box 167
Seward, AK 99664-0167
United States
Population: 2,700
Form of Government: Council-Manager