Officials claim glitch at Macomb County courts caused by Clerk Karen Spranger maxing out credit card

Spranger says she was never told of limit on credit card

By Jason Colthorp - Anchor/Reporter, Derick Hutchinson

MACOMB COUNTY, Mich. - A glitch in the Macomb County courts on Monday was caused by some overspending on a county credit card, and officials said Clerk Karen Spranger is again at the center of the controversy.

The expenses were for a national conference, and Spranger said if the county would stop fighting her on whether to hire an administrative assistant, she would have known about the limit on the card.

But Macomb County officials said after 14 months on the job, Spranger should have known about it anyway.

The Macomb County court likely didn't receive any documents faxed on Monday. Three fax lines were out of service because the autopay on them was declined. After a day-long investigation, employees traced it all to Spranger's credit card being over the limit.

"What we learned late last week is that she maxed out the credit card with your name on it (when she) checked out of her conference in Washington, D.C.," Macomb County Deputy Executive Mark Deldin said.

The statement shows a five-day hotel stay charge of nearly $3,000, plus other expenses.

"I think it's more of their miscalculation of communications," Spranger said.

Spranger said over the phone that she was never told about a limit on the card. She said this is more wrangling by the committee conspiring against her.

"I can't make decisions on the budget, so how can I control this credit card?" Spranger asked. "They're blaming it on me, when really, the responsibility goes back to this committee, because if the committee was monitoring everything, they should've caught the error."

"The fact that we've taken away her budget -- we have not," Deldin said. "We are using the 2017 numbers, so there's no excuse there."

"I don't hold grudges," Spranger said. "I want to get things done. I want to be effective. If it's not communicated to me effectively, or back to them, then responsibility is somewhere in the middle."

Full coverage of Karen Spranger

Jan. 19, 2017: Spranger barred from using county computers after violating security protocols

March 13, 2017: Spranger seeks lawyer for court battle with Hackel

April 11, 2017: Spranger hides in bathroom to avoid questions about dispute with county board

April 20, 2017Macomb County clerk fined for ethics violation amid dispute with county board

April 20, 2017Macomb County clerk crashes county car after being fined for ethics violation

April 24, 2017Neighbor says home listed as Spranger's primary residence overrun with raccoons

May 3, 2017Emails reveal another battle between Spranger and Macomb County officials

May 4, 2017Spranger caught hiding moving boxes to block move to new building

May 9, 2017Legal battle troubles intensify for Macomb County Clerk Karen Spranger

May 10, 2017Judge orders Spranger to cooperate with move to new building

May 17, 2017Spranger answers claims that her office is 'hostile work environment'

June 19, 2017Simple report turns heated between Spranger and county officials

June 22, 2017Macomb County clerk files suit to allow firearms inside government buildings

June 28, 2017Spranger's employees working in fear after security removed

July 20, 2017Spranger accused of perjury over 'uninhabitable' home in Warren

Aug. 1, 2017Lawsuit announced against Macomb County Clerk Karen Spranger

Aug. 14, 2017Employee calls 911 after Spranger asks to look through her purse

Sept. 22, 2017Spranger accused of moving, hiding computers overnight

Sept. 28, 2017Judge rules against Spranger in 'toxic work environment' case

Oct. 21, 2017: Spranger's totaled car among items up for bids at Macomb County auction

Oct. 25, 2017Spranger caught on video covering up court order

Oct. 27, 2017Union files restraining order against Spranger over 'hostile workplace'

Oct. 27, 2017Macomb County Clerk Karen Spranger sues Google amid residency battle

Nov. 1, 2017Employee blames Spranger for huge online backlog at office

Nov. 7, 2017: Spranger requests $100K to pay for her ongoing legal battles

Nov. 9, 2017Spranger's office given Thursday deadline to clear e-filing backlog

Nov. 9, 2017Spranger fails to meet judges' backlog deadline

Nov. 9, 2017: Spranger solves long wait times by bringing in benches for customers

Nov. 21, 2017Union files motion to hold Spranger in contempt of court

Nov. 29, 2017Contempt of court hearing held for Spranger

Nov. 30, 2017: Spranger appears before Board of Commissioners

Nov. 30, 2017Spranger grilled over massive backlog in her office

Dec. 11, 2017: Judge hears arguments on Spranger's firing of employees

Dec. 15, 2017: Video shows feces, clutter in house Spranger listed as residence

Jan. 2, 2018Spranger files lawsuit against Macomb County alleging conspiracy against her

Jan. 8, 2018Spranger puts Macomb County hiring on hold

Jan. 23, 2018Employee says Spranger pressured her to illegally alter record

Jan. 31, 2018: Attorney for Spranger says register of deeds threatened him

Feb. 27, 2018Spranger takes conspiracy allegations to federal court

March 13, 2018: Officials claim glitch at courts caused by Spranger maxing out credit card

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