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Clinton Township, Grosse Pointes

January 11, 2013

Refuse Authority receives another positive audit

By K. Michelle Moran
C & G Staff Writer

CLINTON TOWNSHIP — Despite having to use some of its net assets to cover expenses, the Grosse Pointes-Clinton Refuse Disposal Authority is in solid financial shape.

During a Jan. 8 meeting in Clinton Township Board of Trustees chambers, GPCRDA CPA Lynn Gustafson delivered the results of the most recent audit, which was again done by Plante & Moran.

“It’s a clean opinion,” said Gustafson, noting that the auditors had no adjustments or other corrections to make with regard to the GPCRDA’s financial books for the 2011-12 fiscal year, which ended June 30, 2012.

The GPCRDA’s net assets — all of which are unrestricted — fell by nearly $66,000, leaving them with net assets of $976,119 as of the end of the last fiscal year.

“We had anticipated that decrease in our budget,” said Gustafson. “It’s not anything unexpected. It’s pretty clear cut.” 

The drop was attributed to a need to make a larger contribution to the pension — slightly more than the $60,000 Gustafson said they originally budgeted — as well as increased insurance and property maintenance costs, primarily due to a need to replace an old fence that secures the GPCRDA’s vacant former incinerator site in Clinton Township, a 64-acre parcel.

GPCRDA Attorney John Gillooly said there are “close to a dozen” former incinerator employees “who are receiving pensions” from the Authority now. However, Gustafson said only one retired employee is receiving health benefits, as well. According to the audit, that is limited to a $10,000 annual reimbursement until the retiree reaches age 65.

“It’s very consistent with last year,” Gustafson said after the meeting with regard to the 2011-12 audit. “We still have solid net assets of almost $1 million. We’re continuing to fund our pension.”

GPCRDA Board Chair Brett Smith said the positive audit — the Refuse Authority received the best opinion auditors can give — “indicates we’ve done a good job.”

“Thank you for keeping our books so straight,” Smith told Gustafson. “We appreciate that.”

The board voted unanimously to receive and file the audit.

The GPCRDA is made up of the five Grosse Pointes, Harper Woods, Mount Clemens and Clinton Township.

You can reach C & G Staff Writer K. Michelle Moran at kmoran@candgnews.com or at (586)498-1047.