FLINT TWP. — It pays to belong so when it comes to annual dues for various memberships deemed worthwhile, the township board is not cutting back, despite a tight budget.
The bill is more than $41,000 for two membership dues the township board agreed to pay.
The bulk of that payment —$40,972 – went to the Flint Area Narcotics Group (FANG), which is a multi-jurisdictional investigation team of drug and criminal activity in Genesee County. Due to budget constraints, some municipalities have opted out of FANG participation in recent years.
According to information posted on the Michigan State Police web site, law enforcement agencies with officers assigned to FANG include the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF), Flint Police Department, Flint Township Police Department, Swartz Creek Police Department, Burton Police Department, Grand Blanc City Police Department, Grand Blanc Township Police Department, Davison Township Police Department, Genesee Township Police Department, Mt. Morris Township Police Department, Flushing Police Department and Michigan State Police.
Flint Township Police Chief George Sippert recommended continued membership. Flint Township has been a FANG member since its inception many years ago, he said. Chief Sippert serves on its operations board and Township Supervisor Karyn Miller serves on the FANG executive board. Monthly reports of FANG activity are provided to trustees, he said.
“It is an excellent value for us,” Chief Sippert said. “They do a lot of work in our community. Drug problems are not isolated in a particular area.”
Miller added that FANG dues this year are the same as they were in 2012. But in 2011, the township got its dues back because of drug forfeiture reimbursements.
“There were some large seizures this year and they have to be adjudicated,’’ she said. “I think we will be looking at some sort of refund this upcoming year.”
The motion to pay FANG dues was approved unanimously without discussion. Trustee Frank Kasle was absent.
The board also approved paying $150 dues for its 2015 membership in the Genesee County Metropolitan Alliance. It also is a multi-jurisdictional body that is responsible for decision making on Genesee County roads.
“If we don’t pay the dues, we don’t get to participate in the TIP program for funding for roads,” Miller said.
Alliance dues are used to cover costs of preparation for meetings and for secretarial staff at meetings, according to the invoice letter.