Trustee Challenges Township Using Savings Fund - WLNS TV 6 Lansing - Jackson | Your Local News Leader

Trustee Challenges Township Using Savings Fund

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An annual audit of mid-Michigan community shows things could be off balance.

Last year, officials in Bath Township moved 600,000 from a savings account in order to pay expenses.

The township supervisor says she's okay with that, but our Nick Perreault spoke with a trustee who disagrees and says the township could be broke
if something doesn't done.

"I'm appalled," said Bath Township Trustee Cindy Cronk.

Cronk says she's concerned about Bath's future after a 2013 audit confirms the township spent roughly $624,000 dollars from their fund balance or savings account.

"If you're going to live out of the savings account this year what are you going to do next year?" Cronk said.

Trustee Cronk says it's an example of the township overspending.

"I don't agree with that, we knowingly used part of our fund balance for some expenses," said Supervisor Paula Clark.

Expenses Supervisor Clark says included improvements to Park Lake and the township library.

"Even after the fund balanced used last year we still have a fund balance of 48 percent," Supervisor Clark said.

Far above the 25 percent the board approved to put aside last year, equaling about $2.5 million.

"There's certainly room being at the top end of the range that is could be drawn down some more," said Township Superintendent Dan Wietecha.

Newly hired superintendent, Dan Wietecha says the board is expected in 2014 to take another $500,000 out of savings.

But Cronk believes the board's budget problem's stem from a consistent block of board members voting together, which the township supervisor disagrees.

After reviewing the audit, Cronk says if it came down to a recall of certain members here, she would support the measure.

"Then let her initiate one, she might be surprised at the outcome of that," Supervisor Clark said.

"These are our tax dollars and people need to pay attention to what's going on," Trustee Cronk said.

Cronk says she has faith the new superintendent will provide a balance book for 2015, but is curious to see if that will happen.

The township plans on discussing 2015 budget plans in the next few weeks and Supervisor Clark says the township doesn't expect to use much from their fund balance.

Clark adds the township has improved things to now get a AA credit rating.

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