State Legislature Paying for City Compliance

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Disclosure of financial information and following other state guidelines could result in more money for the City of Grand Ledge, schools.

By Frank Sorise
Grand Ledge Gazette Staff Writer

Grand Ledge will look to follow state guidelines as Michigan legislature has decided that city and local governments need to be more open with their financial information. They are also willing to pay these cities, villages and townships for complying with what the state deems the “best practices.”

“These practices include things like financial compensation, fiscal stability, economic strength and amongst other things quality of life,” said Grand Ledge City Administrator Jon Bayless. “We want to stay within these compliances to receive our share of the compensation.”

If Grand Ledge stays within the state guidelines, the city could receive up to $78,000 according to city treasurer Charles Remenar. One of the major steps in staying within the state’s requirements is creating a “dashboard” on the cities’, villages’, and townships’ website.

Bayless explained the dashboard displays the financial records of the city and if they follow the new Michigan legislature, the city will receive their promised compensation.

Grand Ledge could see infrastructure and other improvements within the city if they remain within the state's guidelines.

“There are three phases of the Economic Incentive Program ,” Bayless explained.  “By October first the city must post their fiscal dashboard. By January first the city must submit a government cooperation consolidation plan and by May first the city must submit an employee compensation plan.”

Grand Ledge Public Schools could benefit even more from the new legislature. For school districts in compliance with state requirements such as their insurance costs, removal of non-instructional services, the districts cooperations with other districts and having the internet dashboard could receive an additional $100 per student.

Tom Goodwin, Grand Ledge Public School’s finance chief said the schools are in compliance and has added $100 per student to the budget for this year, resulting in a total of $514,000 for Grand Ledge Public School spending.

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