Nongprue residents who worship at Wat Boonsamphan have complained to authorities that they are no longer able to park at the temple, as temple employees are aggressively kicking them out in order to collect fees from the Chinese tour buses bringing in loads of donating and trinket buying Chinese tourists.
Worshippers are also complaining that the money being taken in has no oversight and some believe the money being collected isn’t being handled properly, leading to doubts of non-transparency.
After receiving the complaints, Nongprue Mayor Mai Chaiyanit brought in a team in to inspect the situation. Residents from 6 communities, including Kao Noi 1-4 and Khao Talo 1-2, attended the meeting with Pha Kru Baideeka Chawalit Jatamaro, the temple’s abbot.
The mayor recommended appointing a temple commission made up of local residents from the communities the temple serves. This commission would be kept informed of the temple’s income and how it’s being used, the information to come from the abbot with “transparency and orderliness”.
Wanchai Sanngam, Wat Boonsamphan’s treasurer, said that by law, he is in charge of the temple’s money and financial management. Answering the complaints about no oversight and some believing the money being collected isn’t being handled properly, he said that he and three other employees count the money and enter the amount into the temple books for the abbot’s inspection.
He said the abbot will then pass the money back to Wanchai to recount again. Each day, all income and expenses are recorded with the authorized signature of the abbot and can be inspected.
Pha Kru Baideeka Chawalit Jatamaro said he will take the recommendations to the sub-district and district deans, and deputy ecclesiastical provincial governor.
If there are doubts about the income from tour groups, he will take the matter to higher ranked monks.