Scottville commissioner accuses city of over-charging water, sewer.

December 17, 2015

The above information is from the city’s most recent audit.

By Rob Alway, Editor-in-Chief.

SCOTTVILLE — A Scottville city commissioner is circulating a letter telling residents that he has a plan to save the city over $300,000. In that same letter, Commissioner Ed Hahn continues to prove he either does not understand the city’s finances or is purposely misleading the public.

In the opening paragraph Hahn states “I have shown that the residents are paying three times the amount for water and sewer that the city pays out.” Less than two months ago, an independent auditor spoke to the commission about the city’s finances and specifically addressed the water and sewer funds and where the money is spent and invested.

According to the city’s June 30, 2015 audit (the city’s fiscal year is July 1-June 30), the city had a net income of $28,635 in its sewer fund and a net loss of $34,726 in its water fund, equaling a combined net loss of $6,091.

“You can easily see that the water and sewer funds do not make three times as much as they expend as Mr. Hahn notes in his letter,” City Manager Amy Williams said. “These numbers have been shared with him on several occasions and this audit was presented by our auditors back in October; he was present at that meeting.  However, he continues to give erroneous information out to the public.”

During the October meeting, the auditor explained that the city’s sewer income covers three main expenses: Paying off debt from the city’s sewer infrastructure (a project that took place 15 years ago and re-built the entire city sewer system), paying current operating expenses and investing in future sewer infrastructure projects, to avoid incurring large debt as the city currently has.

This news service has written several stories on the recent water rate hikes from the City of Ludington, which sells water to Scottville. See related story here.

The city commission meets Monday, Dec. 20, 2015 at 5:30 p.m. at city hall, 105 N. Main Street.

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