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It is time to be public servants

August 25, 2010 - Dear Editor,

It is time to face and deal with the matters at hand, reality. Across the country our elected officials have been lining their pockets with pay and benefits.

Our (Brandon) township officials are not an exemption to this.

Like many people, my employer requires me to pay half of my medical plan. Our employees, elected officials are hitting taxpayers up for $185,580.66 in medical and $19,718.56 in dental plans. On top of that we pay for $76,464.64 in retirement/Mers & John Hancock. Just looking at these figures, I see much room for sacrifice on their part. Moving to wages and expenses I see more give and less take. The supervisor is paid $55,518 and hits the taxpayer up for $900 in mileage expenses. In total our supervisor accounts for $117,069.38 of expenses. The township clerk and treasurer account for similar expenditures.

Many have seen the cost of benefits rise each year without a raise. To bring our elected officials back in line with reality, I propose the following. First, a 10 percent pay cut for the supervisor, clerk, and treasurer starting with the next election cycle. As I understand it, state law does not allow pay cuts to current elected officials. Second, require that participation in taxpayer-funded medical and dental is at a 50/50 cost split between the taxpayer and employee. Third, set a maximum annual mileage reimbursement at $100 for all elected officials. The savings to the township are approximately: 10 percent pay cut $30,000, 50/50 medical/dental $12,000-$20,000, and max mileage $1,700.

In closing, having one Saturday per month each volunteer to do maintenance and clean up of the park will help eliminate the $31,000 in those costs.

In earnest,

Michael A. Hamlett

P.S. Truth in Taxation

meeting Sept 7.

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