Sturtevant trustees Tuesday will address whether or not to pay Mount Pleasant $17,000 for 2016 South Shore Fire Department equipment purchases a Sturtevant committee late last month voted against.
Trustees Chris Larsen and Chris Wright on Facebook are urging residents to attend Tuesday’s board meeting to voice their concern over the SSFD item on the agenda they say was placed there by thwarting both village ordinance and Roberts’ Rules of Order.
“Call to Action: A member of the board is trying to go against the vote of the Finance Committee to deny giving Mount Pleasant $17,000 for purchase they chose to make without Sturtevant’s approval. This trustee ran to the attorney with your tax dollars to pay for their time to find a loophole to get his way. It was placed on the agenda for this Tuesday when they knew I had a family conflict that prevented me from attending. Your voice needs to be heard call the board and tell them to vote no or go to the meeting Tuesday at 6:00 PM and tell them no,” Wright’s post reads.
In a nutshell, Sturtevant contracts with Mount Pleasant for fire and rescue services through South Shore Fire Department. The terms of the contract say that both villages need to approve fire department purchases, and if Sturtevant does not approve any item but Mount Pleasant funds the purchase anyway, then Mount Pleasant pays for whatever that item may be.
A formula for determining how much each village pays into South Shore puts Sturtevant’s responsibility for about 18 percent.
At issue is a list of SSFD items for 2016 that totaled $1.2 million, making Sturtevant’s portion around $68,000. Sturtevant only approved $50,000 for those purchases, leaving a balance of about $17,000 Mount Pleasant picked up because that village board decided to go ahead with the entire list as presented.
After SC Johnson announced the company was donating $324,000 to South Shore, thereby reducing the financial responsibility for both villages in 2016 for certain improvement purchases, Mount Pleasant officials asked Sturtevant to make up the $17,000.
The Sturtevant Finance Committee – of which both Larsen and Wright are members – voted 2-1 against paying Mount Pleasant. Trustee John Johnson – Finance Committee chair – voted “aye,” and felt so strongly about making up the difference that he worked with village attorneys to have the item placed on the agenda despite the matter technically dying in committee.
Larsen and Wright take issue with the way they say Johnson circumvented due process and violated village ordinance.
The Sturtevant village board meeting begins at 6 p.m. Tuesday at Village Hall, 2801 89th Street. Call (262) 886-7200.