Another Opinion on the Local Government Funds

By Brian Massie, A Watchman on the Wall

Last week, we wrote the following article that exposed the opinion letter written by Prosecutor Coulson, in which he stated that the current alternate formula for the distribution of the local government funds is invalid because of a 2012 resolution passed by the Lake County Commissioners at that time.

Many of the Lake County Mayors and Managers attended the Budget Commission meeting held August 7, 2023. Auditor Chris Galloway explains the issue at hand and Prosecutor Coulson discusses, in a measured way, his opinion letter on the local government funds alternate formula.

Here is the response from the Kirtland Hills and Waite Hills attorney, Stephen L. Byron. He does not agree with Prosecutor Coulson’s opinion letter.

Apparently, the Budget Commission files dating back to 2012 were incomplete. Here are the documents missing from the Budget Commission’s files that the Prosecutor had access to:

Here is the April 28, 2012 letter from the Budget Committee Chairman, Kip Molenaar, to the Lake County Budget Commission. It is quite clear that “The Committee voted not to change the formula”.

We are going to wait to hear Prosecutor Coulson’s response to Byron’s letter, and whether the new, formerly missing pages, change Coulson’s opinion on whether the Alternate Formula for the local government fund distribution is invalid.

Auditor Galloway stated, unequivocally, that the same alternate formula used since 1982 will be used in 2023. This is a long way from being over, and may ultimately be decided by a judge – maybe all the way to the Ohio Supreme Court.


Categories: Lake County - General, Local News, Uncategorized