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Township audit shows no deficit

May 04, 2011 - After review, the state found Independence Township fell $27,543 short last year, as opposed to $2.7 million it found last July.

That amount has already been paid, said township Treasurer Curt Carson.

"I'm glad with the result, that's what we were looking for," Carson said. "It seems like it would be hard for anybody to argue with the result."

Trustee Mark Petterson said he was "extremely happy" and had a feeling this would be the outcome.

"I'm happy that Mr. Carson was able to work with these people and get the situation resolved," Petterson said. "I think all the snot blowing from board members on the treasurer was uncalled for (and) ultimately it worked out for the best."

Supervisor Dave Wagner agreed.

"I knew we were never in any trouble and I'm very glad the state has it clarified now," Wagner said. "It once again proves we did the right thing and it was a good thing. Hopefully there are no more problems."

Carson drove to Lansing with state Sen. Jim Marlow and met with state Treasurer Andy Dillon, a move some trustees opposed.

The board voted 4-3, March 15, to prohibit Carson from meeting with state officials.

"I know it looks like they had a meeting and it got resolved but that's not really what happen," said Trustee David Lohmeier, who voted in favor. "I believe the progress is a result of our finance group's work with the (state) treasury department. We are not the only township with this issue, but I believe they (state treasury) were mostly concerned about setting a precedent for other townships with real financial issues."

Wagner should have brought the issue to the board earlier, Lohmeier said.

"When this first started it should have been brought before the board and we should have talked about the best way to resolve it," Lohmeier said. "Excluding our finance department makes no sense, because they're the only ones that can implement any accounting change."

In an April 15, 2011 letter to the Township the state said the township had 30 days to submit a Deficit Elimination Plan that demonstrates the amount has been eliminated or will be eliminated by 2014.

A Plante Moran audit, Dec. 31, 2009, lists $2,659,093 in township capital assets, with $2,686,636 in expenses, falling short $27,543.

Carson said the 2010 audit should show a positive balance of about $80,000.

Trevor graduated with degrees in English and communications from Rochester College. He wrote for his college and LA View newspapers before joining The Clarkston News in May 2007.
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