AMA ESD uses caution with investments

ALPENA – The Alpena-Montmorency-Alcona Educational Service District Board of Education approved its quarterly schedule of investments during its regular meeting Thursday. The total money invested between the general fund and special education fund is around $4.7 million in over fifteen different banks and credit unions.

“The investments are very important so we have cash flow, and that we are supporting our local banks as much as we can and local credit unions,” assistant superintendent Tony Suszek said. “The cash flow, we’ve got to have that, but we have to protect it so we don’t lose it. We don’t invest it in foreign funds or anything like that, anything risky. Also, the revenue that comes in does help our budgets. Some years, it has been over $100,000 for us, it’s down considerably from that right now, but every dollar we bring in is helpful to help with programming.”

When the AMA ESD invests its funds in banks or credit unions, it has to be with caution. The district can’t take a gamble on an investment, and therefore are guidelines for the entities the district can choose to invest in.

“They have to be government securities or agencies, really supported by the U.S. government,” Suszek said. “Or commercial paper or certificates of deposits, or savings accounts or checking accounts, but it can’t be invested in the stock market or something like that.”

As much as possible, Suszek said it is important to invest in local banks and credit unions, because it not only helps support local business, but the employees banks are all adding to the community.

“We like to work with local banks because they do a good job and provide excellent service,” Suszek said. “A few years ago we started using all the local credit unions. We wanted to work with them and to support them because they are all taxpayers, and they have invested in our community, so we put money in each of the credit unions also.”

Another reason the AMA ESD invests in many different banks and credit unions is because there is a limit on how much is insured at each one, with each insured for up to $250,000. The district needs to utilize a number of banks to make sure that its resources are protected, and therefore must spread funds out to keep them insured.

Nicole Grulke can be reached via email at or by phone at 358-5687.

Follow Nicole on Twitter @ng_alpenanews.