More than $106,000 was transferred into the Cheboygan County, Mich., general fund from the treasurer’s office from the sales of tax foreclosures in the county.
Cheboygan County Treasurer Buffy Jo Weldon presented her annual sales proceeds report to the Cheboygan County Board of Commissioners at its most recent meeting, which showed all the revenues and expenditures from the tax sales.
“The difference is a surplus of $106,235.48,” said Weldon. “In addition to the surplus, there’s still no cost to the general fund for a full-time employee.”
Money from the fund has been used to fund a full-time employee in the treasurer’s office for several years. Properties are able to be sold at tax auction two years after they have been foreclosed on. As part of that process, there are additional fees added onto the delinquent taxes by the state of $15 in the first year and $235 in the second year. These fees are to help cover the cost of recording fees, mailing notices, title searches, publications and all other expenses. The sales proceeds from the tax sales and these fees have covered the expenses of administering the program up to and including the funding for the full-time position.
Weldon requested the board instruct her to move the $106,235.48 into the county’s general fund, which the county board voted unanimously to do. The county currently had around $129,000 from the sales proceeds several years ago that had been earmarked for capital projects. The board voted to designate the money transferred into the general fund to also be marked for use for improvements to the county building.
The board was also presented with a list of 18 parcels currently being foreclosed on in the county which are up for the tax sale.
Before selling these parcels at auction, they must first be presented to the Department of Natural Resources, who can purchase any and all of the properties at fair market value. Any of the properties that remain after that are then offered to the local municipalities who can purchase them and use them for public use before they are offered to the county, who must use them for the same if purchased.
Weldon did suggest two parcels to the State of Michigan for purchase due to there being adjoining state property to both.
“In my opinion, none of these parcels would benefit the county to own,” said Weldon. “Any properties sold at the auction will be put back on the tax rolls, so my request is to have this waiver signed.”
The county board voted unanimously to sign the waiver for the first right of refusal, allowing the 18 parcels to be put up for auction at the annual tax foreclosure sale.
Also at the meeting, the board approved the applications for the Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant and the Michigan Drug Court grant.
“They did change the process this year, where the state court’s administrator’s office is requiring that all drug courts become certified courts,” said Cheboygan County Finance Director Kari Kortz. “And then that makes the grant application funding process a little easier. You apply just one time for all of the grants that are available for those types of programs.”
The application was due June 2, but Kortz was able to submit the application administratively and bring it to the board for approval and ratification after the fact. She had gotten the application for review a couple days prior to the deadline and was able to make any changes she felt necessary.
The board voted unanimously to submit the application for the grant funding in the amount of $110,042.63.
The current year’s award was $105,000. The application submitted was for a little over $5,000 additional, which will be used for personnel and wages and fringe benefits.
“Which were budgeted changes based on our three year plan,” said Kortz.
There were also changes made to the amount allocated to the Salvation Army for monitoring the county’s transitional housing. Once the grant is approved, the county will be told how much it will be awarded, and the budget for the grant may need to be amended and brought back before the board or Kortz for approval.
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