Saturday, February 15, 2014

Courier Reports Milton Township Starts Year without Certified Budget

From the Madison Courier:

Milton Township is starting this year without a certified budget, and state officials and local volunteer firefighters are looking to the township trustee for answers.

The county's certified budget for 2014 has no dollars in appropriations for Milton Township's general fund and the township fire department fund.

Cathy Stockoff, a budget field representative with the Indiana Department of Local Government Finance, said the issue with Milton Township's budget's has been ongoing. The department reported that the township has not submitted a budget for the past two years.

The first year the township did not submit its budget forms, the state rolled over the previous year's budget.

This year is different. With no budget request for the second consecutive year, the state has maintained Milton Township's tax levy but has not appropriated additional money for 2014.

Without a budget, the township cannot provide residents with township assistance - one of the chief duties of the trustee - pay wages or provide funds to the Milton/Brooksburg Township Fire Department.

The Indiana Department of Local Government Finance said the township could enter a proposed budget still for this year, but that it would need to be adopted as an additional appropriation of funds.

Heath and other members of the fire department have been spreading the word to get a response from Stewart or even state officials.

He said he has attempted to reach Stewart several times but has not received a response. Heath said the department invited Stewart to the department's monthly board meeting in January, but said she did not appear.