Friday, January 12, 2007

Lynn Township Excesses Led to Reform

Morning Call columnist Bill Rutherford White reminds us, in a recent column, about the spending excesses inflicted on unsuspecting taxpayers by second class township officials. "Under state law, second-class townships like Lower and Upper Macungie can allow supervisors to hire and supervise themselves, blurring the lines between management and labor, in effect making them accountable to themselves."

Lynn Township has ended that practice, thanks to reform-minded township officials like David Najarian. Chris Casey tells us why in an excellent report at True Dems. Here's a brief excerpt.

The Township employed a full time Secretary Treasurer who worked out of their home. From all appearances, it seems that the person charged with the duties did the barest minimum of work possible, but at least made sure that they, and the other employees and/or Supervisors, got paid.

What few records that were kept show that Lynn Township has not invoiced any reimbursables for almost a decade, going back to 1998. After firing the Secretary treasurer and hiring a new one, an internal audit showed clear evidence of petty theft and missing equipment. It was also discovered that the Township was Delinquent in paying Federal Wage withholding taxes for a period in 2004, and had not filed several mandated pension reports.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The situation in Lynn Township is the inevitable result of the 1901 "Ripper Act" of 1901, repealed fortunately in 1903, but replaced, unfortunately, with the municipality classification system, which has continued the interference in local-government affairs to this day.

The Billy Bytes publications have reported extensively on the Ripper and Classification acts, citing as references, among others, the 1917 edition of The Encyclopedia Brittanica.

The acts are an example of why Pennsylvania's 1873 Constitution cries out for reform, along the lines espoused by the Jefferson Reform Initiative, an issue that was never even discussed in the last general election, unfortunately.