Township moves forward with administrator position

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By Amanda Ensinger
Staff Writer

At a recent Franklin Township meeting, the board discussed approving a resolution to fill the township administrator position.

Trustee Ralph Horn stated his opposition for filling the position.

“I want the residents to know that I 100 percent am against hiring a township administrator,” Horn said. “I want to remind everyone that the township is going through a state financial audit, which is currently in progress. The auditors sent an email to each trustee stating their concerns about hiring an administrator and that the township is overspending money, but the other trustees insist on replacing the administrator position.”

Trustees John Fleshman and Aryeh Alex support filling the vacant position. Horn said the money could be used elsewhere.

“The township roads need fixed, and we have not put any money into them in quite some time,” Horn said. “If the township needs to find grants, there are grant writers out there who would work for $15 an hour. I’m not spending $100,000 to $150,000 a year for money that can be used for other things.”

However, Fleshman said this is not creating a new position, but filling a position already covered in the budget. He also said that the return on investment is worth it.

“The previous administrator obtained the CARES Act grant for $1.25 million and other smaller grants,” Fleshman said. “It is paramount that the township has a good administrator. The administrator can look for grants and keep the burden off the taxpayers. It is just a drop in the bucket to pay an administrator $100,000 (including benefits) when they can bring in a grant at over $1 million.”

At the meeting, the township attorney said that he interpreted the auditor’s email Horn is referencing differently.

“My interpretation of the auditor’s email is that the board of trustees must fully understand the terms and conditions of the administrator position and that the board approves the terms and conditions in a public meeting,” Peter Griggs said.

The board approved a resolution to hire and establish terms and conditions of employment for the township administrator position. Fleshman and Alex voted in favor, while Horn voted against.

Fleshman then introduced the new Franklin Township Administrator Steven Mazer to the audience.

“I’m looking forward to working with everyone,” Mazer said.

 

 

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