Township board considers budget amendments

FLINT TWP. — Two 2012 budget amendments came before the Township Board at its April 16 meeting. One was approved and the other postponed.

The board unanimously approved budget increases for the senior citizens center/library on Graham Road but put off yet again a decision on the fire department budget.

Senior center funding is $3,000 over budget and the library has already spent 58.4 percent of its budget, according to a memo from Beth Takacs, controller, presented to the board.

A budget increase was needed due to a lighting upgrade project the board approved in Feb. The total project cost is about $24,188 cost minus a rebate of $1,178 from Consumers Energy.

As requested, the board approved the addition of $13,806 to the senior center budget and $9,204 for the adjacent library to cover the lighting costs.

Takacs submitted a second memo requesting the transfer of $155,758 from the Fund Balance to the Fire Department to balance its budget.

A similar request for a $155,000 increase was presented to the board in Feb. but tabled.

In October, the board adopted a a budget of $1,775,488 for the fire department, a reduction of $210,000 from the proposed budget of $1,986,365.

The latest amendment request would take the budget back up to about $1,931,066.

Without it, layoffs may be made. Takacs said laying off one firefighter would reduce the budget by about $80,752 and two layoffs would reduce it to $1,766,099.

Trustee Barb Vert said she was bewildered by the presentation of the budget amendment considering the township is conducting a feasibility study with unknown outcomes. Her motion to table the request was seconded by Trustee Belenda Parker and passed 5-2 with Trustees Frank Kasle and George Menoutes voting no.

In February, board also approved a consolidation study to consider shared services with Swartz Creek and Mundy Township that will look at operations for the fire department as well as the police and building departments. Results from that study, conducted by Ann Arbor-based Municipal Consulting Services, are expected to be completed and ready for review by midsummer.

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