Fire Department gets to keep credit card handy




FLINT TWP. — Similar to a privilege granted to the police department in September, Flint Fire Chief Tom Stadler asked for possession of township fire departments credit cards. The Credit Card Use Policy had been for police and fire officials to request a credit card from the controller’s office when needed, then return it to between uses.

But Police Chief George Sippert argued successfully that having to go back and forth between the police department and the township hall to obtain the card when needed was inefficient.

The township board approved his request to keep the credit card at the police station to be used when needed

Fire Chief Tom Stadler made a similar argument about keeping a credit card handy. He noted that the fire station is open 24 hours, 365 days a year but has few options if something is needed in the middle of the night when the township offices are closed.

“Specifically, I am requesting that all Fire Department credit cards be physically maintained by the Fire Chief,” he said stressing that they are not able to predict when emergencies arise. “Amendment to this policy would allow a much more efficient operation for the Fire Department but would not change the oversight of compliance by the Controller’s Office.”

The board unanimously granted his request. Responding to a question from Trustee Barb Vert, Stadler said the cards would be kept in a secure place and only used by him and Assistant Fire the cards would be kept in a secure place and only used by him and Assistant Fire Chief Mike Burkley.

In the police department’s pitch for the same policy amendment, Lt. James Baldwin noted that he is one of few employees responsible for essential and necessary purchases. Occasionally he also makes registration payments for officer training or to reserve lodging.

Baldwin asked that all cards assigned to the police department be kept in the office of the Chief of Police.

Before the policy change, named credit card holders in the department were not permitted to possess their assigned card before going through a time-consuming authorization process. The change allows for a more efficient process.

The Controller’s Office is responsible for issuing, accounting for, monitoring and overseeing compliance with the credit card policy. For both fire and police departments oversight of all credit card transactions and statement remain the responsibility of the Controller’s Office.


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