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an arbitrary decision.”
Felicia Bierzynski stated that she had asked for receipts and paperwork from the previous year’s event. “He gave me some things and when I asked for all of it Armstrong told me, “ You people are lazy.” I said I wanted to see a few more receipts from Wal-Mart, the sporting goods store and you said ‘I don’t have time to get it’.
Armstrong said, “You stated at the previous meeting that you were not buying bicycles or fishing rods.” Bierzynski said when she later came to see Armstrong at the office to get copies of the receipts he told her she had to sign a (Right to Know) form to get them. She asked him why she had to request with the form now and Armstrong told her she had previously been a volunteer and now she was not. “It doesn’t matter whether it was bicycles or fishing poles or candy. I was asking to see the rest of the receipts. He refused to give them to me. We don’t have any cooperation and he refused to give us up front funding. I spoke to Mr. Stella about it later and he said, ‘It was out of my hands.’ Who made the decision?”
Armstrong said, “Most volunteers try to find a way to get things done whatever obstacles are given them. I gave them receipts for candy and games so that they could get an idea of how things were done. To ask for receipts for bicycles or fishing rods, when they said they were not going to give them makes no sense. I was not going to go digging for things twice. In the past years all of the volunteers put everything on their credit cards, came in with their receipts an were immediately supplied with checks for payments.”
Thomas said that other municipalities extend the money for supplies to the event organizers and then they come back with the receipts.
Barbara Deaton echoed the complaint about lack of access to all of the receipts from the previous year. Armstrong said she could have them by signing a Right to Know request. “We want to know were they paid for on the township credit card or were they put on another credit card first. We are suffering as volunteers.”
Armstrong said there was no township credit card whatsoever, that all the expenses for the bicycles and fishing poles were reimbursed to those volunteers.
Venesky retorted, “You and your colleagues could not find a way to make it (Easter egg hunt) happen.”
Mark Taney asked what was the deadline for filing financial reports for candidates in the primary election at the township office. The deadline was March 12, the day of the meeting. The county courthouse closes at 4:30 p. m. Armstrong said that he normally leaves at 4 p. m. but today he was still in his office after 4, when Taney stopped by to review the candidate financial reports.
Janeann Lokken asked about a legal notice for the 2012 budget audit published in the Times Leader on Sunday March 10, which showed a $27,000 shortfall. Armstrong said that the purchase of a police vehicle for $31,000 was not in the budget. Lokken continued to question Armstrong on the numbers in the audit and the monthly treasurer reports.
Carl Smith asked if there was a retainer fee for Attorney Donald Brobst hired last month for additional legal work on the Thomas vs. Rice Township lawsuit? Venesky said there was no additional fee only the $285 per hour. Smith said the arrangement sounded a little strange.
Upon adjournment Venesky apologized for the necessity of conducting the meeting by speakerphone and commented that he felt it workout out rather well.