Wakefield Township gets thumbs up on fiscal year audit

Wakefield TOWNSHIP – Members of the Wakefield Township Board of Trustees received good news on an audit of the fiscal year that ended March 31.
CPA Karl “Gus” Ahonen of Makela Pollack and Ahonen, an accounting firm in Ironwood, provided the report, which indicated no problems.
“You guys do a great job with your financials, and it’s a very pleasant audit to do,” said Ahonen.
He said the township had a fund balance of $540,539 at the end of the fiscal year, with $200,000 committed for roads and $100,000 committed for economic development.
Moreover, said Ahonen, “The township has no long-term debt. You don’t see that often in any township, large or small.”
He said his company has to follow government auditing standards, but assured there were no negative findings such as budget violations.
Township Supervisor John Cox credited board members for the township’s good status, with particular note of Treasurer Joan Dalman and Clerk Mandy Lake.
Cox, who also chairs the board, said the board has had “lots of projects” and “lots of money spent this year, but all of it has been accounted for.”
He and Lake noted the costs of a new master plan, a new internet tower that is now providing high-speed service, numerous road improvements, and extended paving of the township hall parking lot. Moreover, he voiced pride in the fact that, in general, “If something’s wrong, we fix it.”
In other news, Cox also reported that the state intends to designate county-designated assessors.
“It’s kind of like the equalization director used to be,” he said, referring to a position designed to stabilize assessment values throughout a region.
Cox added that the state now also is encouraging townships whose geographical borders touch to consider combining their boards of review. “It’s a good idea,” he said, explaining that Wakefield Township would have the option to combine with one of its neighbors.
The board also learned from Cox that Big Snow Resort is interested in offering motor home space for its visitors. He said the resort hopes to use municipal water, but plans to use portable toilets due to limited sewer capacity.