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A long time ago, I was a child. (I started out as Cathy First from Colon, Mi.) For the past several years I’ve been an adult. A lot of things went on between those two stages of life; probably no more or no less than anyone elses. My husband and I moved to “da U .P” from southern Lower Michigan several years ago (yes we were trolls at one time). We owned and operated and operate Clementz’s Northcountry Campground and Cabins just north of Newberry, Michigan until May 2015. We have grown kids and grandkids (who all live downstate). My passion is life and all that Nature has to offer us and trying to photograph it in unique ways. Our intention in life is to see all that Nature has to offer us. We hope that you will be a part of our adventures as we cruise through our lives together. Come back often!

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

STATE OF MICHIGAN AND PROTECTED FUNDS?? Yeah, right!

Michiganders, do you remember in November there was a proposal on the ballot meant to protect certain funds that are in the state “coffer”?? For example, the annual sticker fee for a snowmobile…THAT went into a “protected fund” and was to be used ONLY for the Michigan snowmobile system which includes all the State clubs in Michigan. This is how your local snowmobile association gets reimbursed for all the brushing, signing, miles groomed, etc.

Well, guess what???? After Gov Jennifer gave the order in March that there was to be no more state spending, all of those protected funds had been included in that order! After several days of phone calls, heated discussions between MSA and the State, the State agreed that they HAD made an error and those funds were OK to distribute. So, here we are, several snowmobile clubs wondering why we have YET to receive our March payment??? It is almost May, and the Tahquamenon Area Snowmobile Association (just to name one because it is the one I’m involved with) is still waiting for several thousand dollars of reimbursement. One of our outstanding bills is for March’s diesel fuel and that company has been waiting a LONG time to get paid.

So, what is the hold up now??? The following is an email I received from another club. I am purposely not giving you the name of the person who wrote it, but believe me, it is the same all over the State of Michigan and could have been written by any one of our clubs.

Hello Everyone,

I just received some very upsetting news regarding DNR reimbursements that I wanted to make you aware of.

We have worked hard to get our reimbursements submitted in time to make our equipment payment of $15,000 on May 1.

We submitted a request on March 30 for over $9,000 and on April 17 for nearly $11,000. Our reimbursements from the DNR have been averaging 10 -14 days.

Since it is now April 23 and we have not received the March 30 reimbursement I was concerned. I phoned my contact in Lansing and was told that through Executive Order from the Department of Management and Budget that they will not make reimbursements before 45 days from the day it is submitted and approved.

This will not allow us to make our equipment payment and we will have to stretch our primary vendor for about another month.

I am furious about this. They did not even notify us Trails sponsors. I guess they were going to let us figure this out on our own?

Mind you we have paid for everything, and honored our terms of the contract and now the State not only collected all of the trail permit fees and using that as a bank they are using us poor clubs as a bank.

Anyway, I have phoned Bill Manson from MSA and Rep. Elsenheimer and Senator Tony Stamas.

I will keep you posted.

This action not only affects snowmobile funds/clubs, but it also affects hunters, fishermen, etc. THOSE are ALL supposed to be protected funds! Where do you suppose it will end? I think it is time for all of us to write our Senator and Representative!

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