Board passes first reading of business license ordinance

FLINT TWP. — Flint Township Board of Trustees Monday heard the first reading of an ordinance proposed by Clerk Kathy Funk to revert the issuing of business licenses from the Clerk’s Department back to the township’s Building Department.

According to Funk, the Building Department issued business licenses from 2012 through 2017. Business licenses were moved to the Clerk’s Department in 2018 through a mutual agreement. Funk said in a written statement that her office has tried for two years to make the situation work. She said Ashlei Hawley has worked almost exclusively on business licenses since joining the Clerk’s Department Nov. 26, 2018.

In the strongly worded statement, Funk said for the licensing process to be seamless, it should flow from the Building Department to the Fire Department. “The addition of the Clerk’s Department adds one more cog that is unnecessary,” she wrote.

Funk said the process from scheduling inspections to handling the monies received has been cumbersome. Several meetings have been held to discuss “lost” paperwork, holding checks from November until February while waiting for inspections to be completed, and a lack of communication between the Building Department and the Fire Department regarding inspections.

“My office, in some cases, sent at least three copies of paperwork to the Building Department regarding inspections,” the statement read. “It became ‘who had what paperwork when and where is it now.’ Also, with the licenses come renewal fees of $45 or new license fees of $75. The Clerk’s Department does not even have a cash register.”

Funk said her office was to print a license and mail it once inspections had been completed. But when telephone calls and emails regarding the inspections were forwarded to her office, she stated they were put in the position of not know what to say because they didn’t know where applications ended up after they were turned over to the Building Department.

The board took no action on the first reading. The proposed ordinance must have a second reading at the April 15 meeting before it can be voted on by the board.

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