Amid financial uncertainty in Vienna Township, a Board of Trustees special meeting was held Monday evening at the Vienna Township Hall where tensions were running high.

Vienna Trustee Phil Pegg told 21 News a fiscal emergency declaration is on the horizon for the township after trustees announced 3 more police department layoffs and 3 more fire department layoffs. Police Chief Bob Ludt resigned in executive session when trustees broke the news.

These layoffs leave the police department with only five police officers left.

Attendees of the meeting could be heard shouting at the board, "Shame on you, trustees!"

"When do we get a refund for not getting those services delivered?" asked one resident regarding the police and fire departments. 

After 2 hours of executive session, Assistant Fiscal Officer Tom Shay confirmed the township has at least $1.3 million of unpaid bills. Trustee Phil Pegg said while the current total stands at $1.3 million, it is likely to increase.

"On tax settlement, we received just over $100k. So right now we have $100k in the bank account and are looking to get a tax anticipation loan," Shay said.

The township is attempting to also receive a $250k loan to pay its remaining employees through September.

Shay said the Board of Trustees requested from the auditor that a financial distress calculation be performed to determine if the township qualifies for any of the 3 financial distress categories. They also requested tax advances be given from the county auditor for taxes that have been paid and not yet distributed.

Trustee Phil Pegg told 21 News he has no updates from the state in regards to the criminal investigation or when audit results could be released. 21 News has been pressing the trustees for the township's annual budget documents but trustees say they just don't have them.

21 News has asked the Vienna trustees, along with newly-seated fiscal officer Rhonda Root, for wages and overtime budgets for the township's fire, police, and road departments for 2022 and 2023.

Trustee Robert Root resigned last week, citing "personal reasons." Pegg has now been declared as the acting chair of the trustees. 

"I can't give you what I don't have," he told 21 News' Erin Simonek. "None of this [files] stuff is current. It's all old stuff from 2018 and 2017," he said, while showing 21 News he did not have recent annual budget documents.  

Pegg told 21 News all records are in the possession of the Ohio Auditor as a part of their ongoing investigation into the missing funds. Pegg explained if the state believes the township meets the requirements to qualify for a fiscal emergency, it will "come in because we do not have enough money to pay our bills," Pegg said.

Pegg said they are trying to do what they can and "hurt as few people as possible." A fiscal emergency could be declared as early as this May.

It is still unclear where the unaccounted dollars in the township went. Fiscal Officer Linda McCullough resigned earlier this year. 

The next trustees meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, May 8th at 6 p.m.