Jason Miller of accounting firm Smith Schafer & Associates presented the results of the 2016 audit for Linwood Township during the Town Board’s Aug. 22 meeting.
With the exception of some extra expenditures for the Town Hall reconstruction, most of the numbers were similar to the 2015 audit. Property taxes made up about 80 percent of township revenues. Miller praised the township for a “very healthy fund balance. That is good to have — reserves.” The benefits of having reserves include a better bond rate.
“The town has very reasonable debt balance,” Miller told the board. “This is another feather in the township’s cap. Another sign of a healthy town — low debt and reserves.” The balance for the general fund is $507,645 which is 121 percent of 2016 expenditures.
Town Board Chairman Michael Halliday told Miller, “It is always good to know that the numbers work out right.”
Fire Chief Darryl Ballman and firefighter Andy Ludtke presented to the board the idea of instituting fire inspection fees. They said other area cities have similar fees that cover the cost of firefighters conducting inspections, particularly on new buildings.
“It seems like this is something that we should be paying for. Pretty soon, we will be charging people to put out a fire,” Supervisor Ed Kramer remarked.
Ludtke and Ballman assured the board they did not have any intention of charging for emergency services, just for inspections.
“If no one wants to make a motion, it is what it is,” Halliday said.
Ludtke replied, “This is truly for inspections and the data that comes out of (them).”
Carol Searing made motion to table the discussion of fees. The vote was unanimously approved.