Easter is just around the corner, and Wayne Township again is sponsoring an Easter Egg Hunt for children.
The hunt will be on March 22, which is the Saturday before Easter, beginning at 11 a.m. in Headwaters Park. Children ages three through twelve will be eligible to participate in the hunt, and adult family members and friends are welcome to attend.
The Easter Egg Hunt is planned by our outreach staff and is especially for children who are in shelters or otherwise might not have the opportunity to celebrate Easter. This event is a wonderful opportunity for families to have fun together.
For the past several weeks, my staff and I have been working diligently on updating our Eligibility Standards. Our Eligibility Standards manual contains the requirements clients must meet to receive township assistance.
Indiana law dictates that each township in the state must establish its own standards for the administration of township assistance. These standards, however, must be written within the framework of the law.
In some instances, Indiana law tells township trustees exactly what they must do. Other parts of the statute allow trustees some flexibility in determining their own standards.
The law takes into account that townships are different. What might work in a populous urban township like Wayne, might not be the best approach for a smaller rural township, such as Lafayette in the southwest part of the county or Scipio in the northeast.
As we worked through the standards for Wayne Township, we read the law regarding each section first to determine what is required and where we might have some flexibility. We then revised each section accordingly.
Wayne Township’s Eligibility Standards must ensure that each client who comes into my office is helped in a fair and equitable manner. We also must have standards that encourage clients to become self-sufficient and that use tax dollars wisely and efficiently.
When our new standards become reality, they leave no doubt that our clients who are able to work must cooperate with our new employment program. If they do not cooperate, they will risk losing their benefits. Further, the updated standards will encourage clients seeking housing assistance to obtain affordable housing at the risk of having their benefits reduced.
The revised standards are one more step toward our dual goals of helping the poor, while also being a guardian of the taxpayers’ money.
Richard A. Stevenson, Sr.
Wayne Township Trustee