Voter Guide

The counties included in the voters guide for the Nov. 5, 2019 elections are: Montgomery, Warren, Miami, Greene, Clark, Champaign, and Butler.

NOTE: Not all communities have issues or candidates on the ballot. Guide does not include uncontested races.

German Twp. Fiscal Officer

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    Mark Heistand

  • Mark Keener

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    Kathy Rettich

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Biographical Information

What steps can you take to stretch tax dollars to ensure the most efficient spending for services?

What are the biggest challenges facing the township and how would you deal with them?

What qualifies you for this position?

What do you want voters to know about you?

Experience 40+ years in public accounting (a practicing CPA), corporate accounting (Controller & Chief Financial Officer positions) & consulting (helping scores of companies in financial crisis). 30 years involved in Germantown government. City Councilman 2015-2016. Current member of the city’s Economic Development Committee, Personnel Board & Board of Tax Appeals. Past member of the city’s Board of Zoning Appeals, Charter Review Commission, Architectural Review Board & City Beautiful Commission.
Education Valley View High School, 1972. BA, Economics and Pre-Management, Magna Cum Laude, University of Cincinnati, 1977. MBA, Finance and Accounting, Wharton Business School, University of Pennsylvania, 1978
Every one of my turnaround consulting clients has been in a financial crisis, where expenses have exceeded revenues. In each case I have made tough decisions to reduce or eliminate non-essential expenses in order to keep my clients in business. I can utilize those same skills to evaluate every expense of the township to make sure our taxpayers are getting the maximum benefit for their investment of tax dollars. Public servants must realize that we are employed by the voters to provide our citizens with the best possible return on their money. We township employees are in a service business and must not forget that we are spending other people’s hard-earned money they have graciously entrusted to our care.
I see two major issues for the Township. (1) The Water District debt needs to be retired over the next few years. Finding funds for these payments will be difficult. Unless the State increases local government funding, reducing or eliminating non-essential township expenses will be needed to pay the debt. (2) The deteriorating condition of the roads in the unincorporated areas must be addressed. Voters turned down additional 2 mill road levies for the unincorporated areas in November 2018, May 2018, November 2017 & November 2016. This November a 1 mill replacement road levy is on the ballot for the entire Township, including the City. It’s critical that this levy passes but it will not generate enough income for the Township to maintain the many miles of roads outside the city limits. Without the passage of a road levy specifically for the unincorporated areas of the Township, finding the necessary funds to keep the roads in good shape will be nearly impossible.
Being semi-retired, I have available time to handle the part-time fiscal officer responsibilities. My entire career has been focused on accounting and financial issues, from my time in public accounting to my corporate accounting years as Controller and CFO, and to my 25 years of financial consulting. As a member of Germantown’s City Council, I dealt with the City’s budget, income and expenses, but also had the opportunity to receive and review monthly financial reports from the Township. In my volunteer life, I have been the Treasurer of The Historical Society of Germantown from 1985-2003 and again from 2009-Present. I was the Treasurer for the Valley View Music Boosters in 2004-2005 and again from 2007-2011.
I have been a member of the Germantown Lions Club since 2011, serving as President in 2014-2015 and as Secretary since 2016. I chaired the Lions committee that built the new restroom/concession/shelter facility at the Astoria Road soccer complex. I am a lifelong member of Germantown United Methodist Church, where I sing in the Chancel Choir and play in the bell choir. I have been married for 34 years to my wife Karen Carmickle. We have two adult sons – William (Taylor), a science teacher at VVHS who lives in the Township on Oxford Road – and Charles (Kelsey), an electrical engineer who is restoring the old Dale and Susanne Shafer home on Dayton Pike. Karen and I are awaiting the birth of our first grandchildren, twins, that William and Taylor will bless us with in February. As a sixth generation Germantown resident, my heart is with this community. I would be proud to serve as the next German Township Fiscal Officer and humbly ask that the voters remember me on Election Day.
Experience I have 4 years of experience as German Township Fiscal Officer. I am also a CPA and have 30+ years of experience in public accounting, taxes and computer systems consulting.
Education BS - Accounting from Wright State
Over the last four years we reduced spending on recurring items by several thousand dollars. We continue to look for other spending cuts, but strive to provide quality services to the residents of German Township. Our Road & Service Department performs most of the maintenance on our equipment and buildings when possible thus eliminating many outside repair costs. By constantly maintaining our trucks and police cruisers we are able to extend their useful lives - saving money for the taxpayers.

Our Township also cooperates with other jurisdictions for purchasing contracts and road improvement contracts. By pooling our purchasing needs, we can often reduce costs.
Money is always a big challenge for local governments. Townships have been hit particularly hard over the last decade. As real estate values declined, so did revenue from real estate taxes. Elimination of other sources of funding from the State has also affected our budget. In general, townships cannot raise money by implementing income taxes, so the primary source of revenue for most operations and services remains real estate taxes.

Maintaining infrastructure is also a challenge - especially given the limited funds available. Repaving roads is extremely costly so we are limited each year with what we can do. The additional gas tax will help somewhat, but it is still not nearly enough to do what needs done. Other costs such as road salt have also been increasing.

Having over 30 years of experience with accounting and finance gave me a head start when I became Fiscal Officer 4 years ago. Since we are a small township with a limited budget, I am the "finance department." This position is very hands on and I deal with everything from working with our local bank to processing payroll to paying bills to filing regulatory reports. Fortunately, these are all things that I've handled previously in my career.

I've also gained a lot of experience specific to being Fiscal Officer since taking office. I am fortunate that I can call on my predecessor's 24 years of experience when needed. I also have attended several seminars and workshops that cover a wide range of topics faced by local governments.

I have enjoyed serving as Fiscal Officer and I look forward to serving for another term.
Experience I was the Clerk of Council for the City of Moraine for a decade. After leaving the City of Moraine I performed property management and accounting & still continue this work. I also worked in the insurance field owning & operating an agency and also had my multi-line insurance license most of my life.
The duties of a township fiscal officer are set out in the Ohio Revised Code, fiscal officers control accounting, accounts receivables, and payable, and investments. Fiscal Officers ensure the township receives money it is due and appropriate bills are paid. I would have an open ledger check book system where any tax payer can find out who is paid, how much, and what for. This would show how much is being spent in each individual account, and could be broken up by each department. I would advise trustees on the appropriate spending and ensure that only appropriate and accurate bills were paid.
The Township has serious financial issues. The property tax basis has been falling because the Miami Conservancy district/ Metro Parks has purchased substantial amounts of property removing that property from the tax rolls. The Miami Conservancy District/Metro Parks does not pay property taxes and the Township’s expenses like gasoline, insurance and wages continue to rise while the income to the Township has decreased.

Years of work as a municipal employee, a life of experience with insurance, accounting,and property management. I have lived in German Township for over forty (40) years. I am invested in the community, my children, and great grandchildren live in German Township, and I hope my great grandchildren will also someday reside in German Township
I am honest, responsible, and hard working. I am committed to German Township and I will work to do what is best for this community. Have no doubt that I will fulfill the duties of the position, to the best of my ability, diligently, and reliably.