Official: Augusta village clerk admits to sending water bill with vulgar message to resident

Posted at 4:45 PM, Apr 25, 2017
and last updated 2017-04-25 16:55:01-04

AUGUSTA, Mich. — The Augusta village clerk accused of sending a letter addressed with a vulgar word to a Kalamazoo County couple has admitted to the act, police say.

Kevin Barthel, the Augusta resident who received the letter earlier this month, tells FOX 17 the village clerk has admitted to the act and gave them a letter apologizing.

Police Chief Jeff Heppler tells FOX 17 that the incident did happen and “appropriate steps” are being taken to fix the problem. He declined to say whether or not the clerk would be fired.

Barthel and his longtime girlfriend, Annette Tolis, say it all started after trying to pay their bill multiple times in person, but after the village clerk wasn’t there any of those times, they left a note voicing their frustration. That’s when they got their water bill with a surprising message.

Tolis says when she went to get her mail April 8, she and her boyfriend were shocked after looking a little closer at her water bill.

“It’s addressed to Annette Tolis and the a*****e that lives here too,” said Kevin Barthel. “I’m 99.9 percent sure that I’m the a*****e she’s referring to.”

The couple says this all started a few weeks ago. They like to pay their water bill in person at the Augusta Village Hall so they can get a receipt, but claim every time they go the office is always closed because the clerk isn’t there.

“It’s just really hard to catch her there,” said Annette Tolis.

They left a letter for Glenn.

“It said, ‘You come into work late, you leave early, you take long extended lunches and you make it impossible for us village residents to pay our bills on time. Work is an obligation and not a convenience and everybody’s watching,'” said Tolis.

Annette and Kevin think the water bill with the message came because of that note.

“I don’t understand why anyone would put anything like this on a government letterhead,” said Barthel. “It’s crazy. It’s just amazingly crazy that someone would even do this.”

Despite the apology, Barthel is still calling for the village clerk to be fired over the incident.