$5,000 Donation Rejected by Forks Supervisors
The Forks Township Board of Supervisors voted against giving a $5,000 donation to the Business and Commerce Association of Forks Township.
It wasn't the first time the Business and Commerce Association of Forks Township has been rejected by the Forks Township Board of Supervisors.
And it might not be the last.
The business group had hoped to get a $5,000 donation from the supervisors to offset some of its operating costs. But since the township is under financial constraints, the measure was rejected in a close vote.
Alison Miers appeared before the supervisors at their recent meeting to ask for a $5,000 donation that would help pay for initiatives such as a real estate tour, business roundtables, a business guide and marketing and promotional efforts.
But, like the time Miers requested a matching grant to post welcome signs in Forks Township, the supervisors balked at the move.
"I support you guys a lot. You do a great job," Supervisor David Billings said.
But Billings has been seeking a policy on giving donations to groups and didn't want to fork over a donation until he receives one. "I support tabling this until June."
Supervisor Dan Martyak questioned BCAF's financial portfolio and requested spreadsheets to see how the organization is spending its funds.
"At this time, I'm inclined to know more details," Martyak said. "I don't even know your current operating budget."
Supervisor Bob Egolf said he was "strongly" opposed to giving such a donation.
"I feel very strongly about this. I have to vote against it," Egolf said. "We've asked our managers to tighten their budgets. We're in dire financial straits. I endorsed a moderate tax increase for 2013. I can't vote to give away taxpayer money."
Supervisors Chairman Erik Chuss appeared appalled by his colleagues' actions.
"We neglected our businesses for 20 years," Chuss said. "Five thousand is a mere pittance. It's an embarassment. Saying no to $5,000 is a shame. What BCAF has done is an amazing job. What you're doing is providing a service that we should have."
Supervisors Chairman John O'Neil agreed.
"It is an investment in our future," he said. "We can't rely on houses being built. For $5,000 to attract businesses is well spent."
The measure was defeated 3-2 with Chuss and O'Neil voting yes.