FINANCE DIVISIONCarolyn Shefsky, Division Manager (908) 231-7689
The Finance Division is responsible for overseeing all financial activities within the tri-county vicinage including general accounting operations, court held funds and revenues, purchasing, fixed asset management and accounts payable functions.
The first floor of each courthouse within the vicinage is home to the most vital components of vicinage financial operations. The Somerset operation is located at 20 North Bridge Street, Somerville NJ 08876 and consists of the Finance Management Team offices as well as the Budgeting, Position Control, Purchasing, Fixed Assets, Accounts Payable, Fiscal and Court Held Funds staff. The Hunterdon County Finance Office is located on the 1st floor of the Justice Center at 65 Park Avenue, Flemington, NJ 08822 where payments related to Civil, Special Civil Part, Family, Bail, Child Support and Probation are received and processed. The Warren County Finance team members are located on the 1st floor of the courthouse at 413 Second Street, Belvidere, NJ 07823. The division consists of two major components: the Vicinage Finance Office (VFO) and the Central Collection/Court Held Funds Office (CFO). These components include teams who are accountable for all financial operations of the courts including budget, position control, purchase and property, accounts payable, fixed assets, account/cash management, financial reporting and collections. The Finance Division implements policies, procedures, and internal controls for all court financial activity.
The Vicinage Finance Office (VFO)
The Finance Division interacts with all divisions and is responsible for administering the budget for Vicinage 13, Somerset, Hunterdon, and Warren Counties. The budget process consists of projecting salaries for all staff and approximating all operating expenses including office supplies, telephone charges, postage, printing services, etc. Quarterly spending plans are prepared and submitted. The Finance Division also shares responsibility for position control with the Human Resources Division.
The Fiscal Unit is responsible for processing all employee reimbursements, paying vendor invoices, and administering and reconciling all grants including the Federal Child Support Grant (Title IV-D).
The Purchasing Unit is an integral component of the Finance Division. It is responsible for processing all requisitions for goods and services for the vicinage, developing requests for proposals and administering the bidding process. The Purchasing Unit ensures that all vicinage purchases follow state guidelines by determining whether an item is under state contract or whether is it necessary to send an item out to bid. Once goods are received, the purchasing unit prepares the payment to the vendor.
The purchasing unit is also responsible for the management and tracking of all vicinage fixed assets. This includes overseeing the annual physical inventory of all fixed assets and coordinating the disposition of surplus assets.
The Cash Management Unit oversees the Court Held Funds Unit to guarantee that all money collected by the courts is properly accounted for, deposited, disbursed and reconciled (by way of performing daily audits and statistical reports) while ensuring that strict attention is paid to internal controls, segregation of duties and daily/monthly reconciliations. The various funds collected and disbursed include bail forfeitures, miscellaneous fees, court escrow/funds, probation fines and restitution, family fees, child support payments. Once collected, the Finance Division ensures that funds are deposited daily, accounts are reconciled and that the state receives all revenue in a timely manner. The Unit’s ultimate goals are to ensure that assets (money collected and deposited into respective bank accounts) equal liabilities (money posted for disbursement to the case management system – CABS, CAPS, NJKiDS etc.) The Unit must also identify the escheat of unclaimed funds, manage grants and respond efficiently and effectively to audits conducted by the AOC, County and the Office of Legislative Services. Finally, the Unit is responsible for overseeing the adherence of all policies and procedures mandated by the Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC).
The Vicinage Central Fee Office (CFO)
The Central Fee Office is responsible for the overall fiscal activities where all money is collected, accounted, deposited, disbursed and recorded. Each office edits, reviews and batches all incoming documents prior to entry into the automated systems. It also handles the disbursement, accounting, intake, collection and financial systems entries for court held funds. The revenue collecting areas include 1) Bail/Fines, 2) Probation Fees & Restitution, 3) Special Civil/Civil fees, 4) Family, 5) Child Support and 6) General Equity.
Strict attention is paid to the recording of all transactions (data entry of financial transactions into the system), intake at the cashier’s window, intake of negotiable instruments (money orders, cashier’s checks, personal checks, etc.) through the mail, preparation of deposits and related analysis.
The Finance Division Offices are open to the public Monday through Friday 8:30 am to 4:30 pm.