Fall is here and winter is quickly approaching, which means we are preparing for the heating season. This time of year is typically very busy for us here at Wayne Township. We are proud to be sponsoring our third annual Community Partnership Summit on October 24th, which is a gathering of all of the social service agencies and benevolent organizations that assist people with their utility bills. The Summit offers an opportunity for these agencies to share information about their funding situations and any program changes. At these meetings, community agencies work together in the prediction of upcoming challenges and in the development of solutions. This event is one of my favorites because it shows the effectiveness of teamwork across our community, something I’ve always advocated.
The purpose of this Summit, to prepare for the upcoming crises, is also a duty of township trustees, but so often not recognized. Speaking from experience, I can say that trustees do more than ‘just pay bills’. Projecting future budgets, as well as creating ways to help more people while protecting tax dollars, requires trustees to pay close attention to economic trends not only in their township, but also in their city, state, and even nationally. Trustees must also continually assess the needs and concerns of their citizens, which is at the heart of grassroots democracy. By being actively connected to the community, I have had the opportunity and privilege of getting firsthand feedback from citizens, community leaders, and social service organizations.
Although township government is the most local form of government, it does not mean it should be isolated. In fact, as an elected official, I believe it is part of my duty to represent my neighbors whenever possible to the higher levels of government because it helps to make sure their voice is heard.
Matthew P. Schomburg
Wayne Township Trustee