Benton Township to get new website

By Tony Wittkowski | Business Reporter | The Herald-Palladium

BENTON TOWNSHIP — Benton Township’s trustees say the township website is outdated and not user friendly.

That’s why the board voted to pay for a new one during Tuesday’s meeting.

Treasurer Debbie Boothby said Fusion Design Group in New Buffalo gave a proposal for $6,500 for the design and development of a new website.

“It will make everything easier,” Boothby said. “Residents can now look up their assessing, tax and billing records online.”

Boothby said the new site should be functional in the next 45 days.

In search of a new online format, township officials looked at a few of the websites Fusion Design did, including St. Joseph Township and New Buffalo.

“We told them that it needed to be easy to access,” Boothby said. “Nothing over the top, but it has to be better than the one we have now. The goal is to make this website a great resource for residents to access any time of the day.”

The township’s current website is more than a decade old.

Electronic payments

The township finished its review of the electronic payment vendors and decided to hire Point & Pay. The vendor would allow the township to give residents the ability to make payments using a credit card.

Trustees voted to use the third-party processing company because Point & Pay has an existing use with BS&A Software. Boothby said the township uses the same software for cash receipts for “seamless integration.”

With a target date of July 1 in mind, residents can pay bills using a credit card in person at the office, online at the website or over the phone through a designated call center.

“In addition to being able to pay with a credit card, you can pay with an e-check online and through the designated call center,” Boothby said.

Because the township is using a third-party processor, there will be a convenience fee of 3 percent to payers for each credit card payment. Former ways of paying are still accepted at the township office.

Contact Tony Wittkowski at twittkowski@TheHP.com or (269) 932-0358. Follow him on Twitter: @tonywittkowski.

(Author’s Note: This article was originally published on May 19, 2016)

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