Articles on this Page
- 06/05/18--01:57: _Friday Is Deadline ...
- 06/05/18--02:49: _Mother Asks For Com...
- 06/05/18--04:45: _Attorney Hopes Gran...
- 06/05/18--06:56: _Plans Move Forward ...
- 06/05/18--07:41: _Brighton Woman Boun...
- 06/05/18--07:56: _Flex Route Wins Nat...
- 06/05/18--08:15: _Second Street Recon...
- 06/06/18--00:13: _Community Trip To D...
- 06/06/18--01:19: _Music Park To Be In...
- 06/06/18--02:21: _New Pavilion, Playg...
- 06/06/18--06:41: _Join The Lyon Towns...
- 06/06/18--07:38: _Howell Author's Lat...
- 06/06/18--05:29: _Brighton Woman Rece...
- 06/06/18--11:38: _Hartland Township B...
- 06/07/18--01:40: _Local Man Charged W...
- 06/07/18--02:12: _Second Street Const...
- 06/07/18--02:18: _Michigan Supreme Co...
- 06/07/18--03:56: _Legislation Would R...
- 06/07/18--06:11: _Open Houses Set For...
- 06/07/18--06:33: _Green Oak: No Plans...
- 06/05/18--07:56: Flex Route Wins National AwardFlex Route Wins National Award
Candidates have until the end of this week to apply for a vacancy on the Hartland Board of Education.
The seat on the board became open last month when longtime member Kevin Kaszyca gave notice that he was leaving the board after 13 years for personal reasons. Board President Thom Dumond says they hope to attract a quality candidate to fill the seat until the general election in November. Interested candidates should submit a letter of interest and any supporting documents no later than 3pm this Friday, June 8th to Dumond.
Interviews for potential candidates will be held during the regular board meeting next Monday June 11th, with the expectation a candidate would be formally appointed at the following meeting.
A local mother is asking for the communityâs help in locating her teenage son and his girlfriend, both of whom have been missing for over a week.
15-year-old Cody Curtiss left his home in Howell on Sunday, May 27th. His mother, Rena Lin, believes he and his girlfriend, 15-year-old Marrissa Holmes, then left Marrissaâs motherâs house in Howell the next evening around 11:30pm. It is unclear where the two may be headed, or why they left. Cody is approximately 140 pounds, 5'7", has brown eyes and brown hair that was recently cut short from a ponytail. Marrissa is said to be slightly taller with long, blonde hair that was dyed light pink. Both have tattoos and are said to look older than their age.
The pair is believed to be traveling on foot and may have backpacks, though did not take large sums of money before leaving, according to Lin, who says she does have an app to track any activity on Codyâs cellphone, which has reportedly stayed turned off since his departure. Lin does not believe Marrissa has a cellphone, though she has sent messages from some type of device, which provided a tip to a previous location.
Lin says the two have been spotted in Dearborn and Redford, and has been pursuing any and all leads since they went missing. She says theyâre "good kids who have just been through a lot" and that she just wants them home safe. Anyone with information regarding the pair or their whereabouts is asked to contact the Howell Police Department and reference case number #18-04103. (DK/JK)
A local attorney hopes a petition filed by a retired judge seeking to impanel a grand jury in the misconduct investigation of an embattled judge will finally spur some action.
Former Livingston County Circuit Court Judge Daniel Burress filed a petition on Monday seeking to impanel a citizenâs grand jury and appoint a special prosecutor to investigate 53rd District Court Judge Theresa Brennan. Howell Attorney Tom Kizer represented Brennanâs ex-husband in divorce proceedings, which revealed a sexual relationship between Brennan and Michigan State Police Detective Sean Furlong. Furlong was the lead detective and chief prosecution witness in the 2013 double murder trial of Jerome Kowalski, who was convicted and sentenced to life in prison without parole. Kizer advised Livingston County Prosecutor Bill Vailliencourt of the relationship between Brennan and Furlong prior to a jury being impaneled in the Kowalski trial. The defense sought to recuse Brennan from hearing the case but she refused, maintaining the two only had a friendship. The petition filed by Burress states in spite of widespread rumors in the legal community that Brennan had much more than a special relationship with Detective Furlong, the judge declared from the bench that it was a friendship and nothing more. The petition further says Brennan was the sole arbiter of the credibility of Furlong and other facts that critically impacted the guilt or innocence of the defendant.
Kizer applauded Burress for filing the recent petition, speculating itâs likely because itâs been more than a year since these revelations came to light and neither the Judicial Tenure Commission nor the Michigan State Police have acted to remove Brennan from the bench. Kizer says a man went to prison maybe not getting a fair trial because of a biased judge who he says lied about her relationship with the lead detective. Kizer says âThe system has just run right off the rails.â He says Burress being a jurist, attorney and member of the community, probably feels like many do in that the entire judicial system has a black eye because of Brennanâs behavior. Kizer also thinks the prosecutorâs office will also have a black eye before everything is done, saying if it has done its job in 2013 or before and not been so interested in gaining a conviction, maybe things would be different.
Livingston County Prosecutor Bill Vailliencourt has defended his conduct in the case, pointing out that shortly after he filed his first request with the Judicial Tenure Commission regarding Judge Brennan in early February of 2017, he also requested that a separate criminal investigation be conducted by the Michigan State Police in order to determine what the facts are, as opposed to rumor, speculation, and innuendo. Vailliencourt says he wanted there to be no question about the independence and integrity of the investigation â adding he, like everyone else in this community, is anxiously awaiting answers from the State Police investigation as justice demands it.
Kizer says if a special prosecutor is appointed then testimony will be taken and there will be an airing and someday closure, saying the public has a right to have something done. He says hopefully this petition will do it and he doesnât think it will interfere with any ongoing investigations. If anything, Kizer feels it should help get the criminal investigation completed and get some answers. Kizer feels the local prosecutorâs office has already established its true colors and said he would be highly critical if it was even considered for the case stemming from the petition. He hopes by impaneling people on a grand jury, appointing a special prosecutor or getting the Michigan attorney general involved, the truth will eventually come out. Kizer says if MSP havenât completed the investigation by now, theyâll be called to testify before a grand jury if impaneled â meaning the public will be able to find out whatâs going on and what they are doing or not doing. Kizer says they should not have to wait 16 months when sworn testimony is available and he would like to know the reasoning for letting this linger so long. If handled appropriately, he feels the petition could be a tool to bring the matter to closure.
Chief Livingston County Judge Miriam Cavanaugh has declined to comment on the petition filed by Burress, which is attached for viewing. The case has since been assigned to Judge David Reader. WHMI also reached out to Brennanâs attorney, who has yet to respond. (JM/JK)
The construction of a facility for truck and trailer developments has been pushed forward by Genoa Township.
Grand Rapids based ACS Build is working towards bringing a new manufacturing facility to Genoa Township that will be used to turn heavy duty trucks into snow plow trucks. Construction Manager Ken McQuade told WHMI that ACS Build is looking to build within the area to better service the high demand they see in Livingston County. The new facility will span 30,000 square feet that is located on 10 acres at 900 Grand Oaks Drive, south of Grand River.
The Genoa Township Board approved the application for the site plan on Monday night. ACSâs next steps involve submitting their plan to Livingston County to receive a building permit. If all goes smoothly, ACS plans to begin construction in the upcoming weeks.
McQuade says he hopes to have the facility completed by Christmas and functioning in winter. He also thanked Genoa Township for being very reasonable to work with and helping ACS get through the construction process. (DF)
A Livingston County woman has been bound over for trial on charges connected to an incident in which she allegedly facilitated an encounter where a minor was sexually assaulted and impregnated.
26-year-old Paige Nicole VanCamp of Brighton is charged with first-degree criminal sexual conduct. She was recently bound over to Lenawee County Circuit Court, where she waived her arraignment. A pre-trial date is set for June 26th. Authorities say that in September of 2016 VanCamp drove a 16-year-old girl to Adrian with plans to have sex with her, another woman and a man. The teen was allegedly plied with alcohol and pressured to have sex with the man, which resulted in her pregnancy.
32-year-old Shane Rodgers, a parolee from Adrian, was originally charged with first-degree CSC for assaulting and impregnating the teen. He pleaded guilty to a reduced count of third-degree CSC and was sentenced last month to five to 15 years in prison. (JK)
A project to allow better traffic flow on a local freeway has been recognized with an award.
The Intelligent Transportation Society of America is holding their Annual Meeting this week at Cobo Center in Detroit. On Monday, ITS held an award ceremony and selected the US-23 Flex Route project in Washtenaw and Livingston counties as the Transportation Systems Operations project of the year. It beat out six competing projects from across the country.
The Flex Route provides additional capacity during peak travel times on US-23 between 9 Mile Road and M-14 by opening the median shoulder to traffic, which officials say improves traffic speeds and incident response, and provides advance notice of upcoming conditions. Flex Route is monitored 24/7 by MDOTâs Statewide Transportation Operations Center, which houses dispatchers from MDOT and Michigan State Police. The agencies share information by monitoring traffic sensors, distress calls and video feeds from closed-circuit cameras.
If a traffic condition develops, the Flex Route is adjusted through electronic control signs above each lane. The signs show motorists which lanes are available and provide the recommended speed for current travel conditions. The $92 million project also included replacing the overpasses at 6 Mile, 8 Mile, and N. Territorial roads. (JK)
The public is encouraged to attend an informational meeting tomorrow night about the reconstruction of North Second Street and associated utility upgrades.
The City is looking to close First Street and North Second Street from Millpond Lane to Walnut Street on Monday. The reconstruction project involves utility upgrades to the water main and sanitary sewer as well as pavement replacement. The project involves different phases, resulting in different closures and detours. The plan is to start on a section from Millpond Lane to Second Street, which will be completely closed off for roughly seven days and a temporary detour will be set up through Walnut and Fourth Street to get around to Second Street. However, the majority of the project will allow for traffic going northbound or southbound. The only time that could change is when there are specific service leads to work on and contractors have been instructed to communicate with homeowners.
A public information meeting on project specifics will be held from 6 to 8pm Wednesday night in council chambers at Brighton City Hall on First Street. DPW Director Marcel Goch says it was somewhat short notice but officials went door to door in the area about the meeting. He tells WHMI they really encourage anyone off Second Street and the surrounding area to attend. Goch along with city officials and engineers will be available to explain the project, answer any questions and make sure everyone is informed about whatâs coming. Goch says itâs a good time for homeowners to express any specific needs, although they can also always contact the DPW office or City Hall. He says anytime there are service interruptions, they try give as much notice as possible and work with everybody.
The project will last all summer into November. The Brighton Downtown Development Authority is funding the Second Street paving and sidewalk work, while the City is paying for the utility portion of. The DDA is funding the ongoing Millpond Amphitheater renovations. Goch says they appreciate everyoneâs patience during construction, saying work is needed and it will be nice when everything is done. He added people do need to keep in the mind that the Third Street closure will start at the same time but that will only be a week and school will be out, but he still anticipates traffic getting pushed around a bit.
In addition to the Second Street project, CSX Railroad will be closing the crossing at Brighton Lake Road. That closure is also slated to begin Monday. That should only be a weeklong job but Goch says it is kind of a main thoroughfare coming south of town so he advises motorists pay attention to posted detours. He says Monday was determined to be the best start time because after July there are a lot of events downtown, coupled with the construction on Second Street and other work continuing on Challis Road, it would just get busier. That is a Livingston County Road Commission project but the City is involved with it because of their water main. Goch says theyâre âtrying to work with everybody and just walk through the weedsâ.
Construction updates will be posted on the City of Brightonâs website and social media accounts as the Second Street project progresses. (JM)
The registration deadline is nearing for a community trip being organized in Fenton to the Detroit Institute of Arts.
The City of Fenton is among the current communities participating in the DIAâs Inside/Out program, which brings high-quality reproductions of masterpieces from the DIAâs collection to outdoor venues. In celebration of the program, the Fenton Art & Cultural Commission is inviting community members to enjoy a free trip to the DIA this coming Sunday. The trip includes a luxury motor coach ride to and from the DIA, as well as waived fees with a guided tour. Participants can bring their own sack lunch or purchase lunch at the cafÃ© on site. The trip is funded through the DIA Inside/Out program in coordination with the Knight Foundation. Those interested in attending must be at least 18 years old and the number of participants is limited to 54. The departure time is 9am from the Fenton Community & Cultural Center, with estimated return around 3pm. Advance registration is required by noon this Friday through Southern Lakes Parks & Recreation.
Details and a registration form are attached, along with a walking map of the Fenton Inside/Out project. (JM)
The Brighton Board of Education has accepted a donation of $11,432 from the Spencer Parent Teacher Organization to install a Music Park at the Spencer Road Elementary School on Spencer Road in Brighton Township.
The donation was accepted by the board at its meeting last week. The music park, purchased from Playworld Midstates, will be installed just outside the school playground. The set includes five drums, two xylophones and a Yantzee, which produces low sounds that complement the other instruments. PTO President Cari Pilon says all of the instruments will be installed in-ground, and she isnât concerned about vandalism or theft since the instruments are installed permanently and are very hard to damage. Pilon says the Music Park will be ideal for kids who are disinterested in other playground activities, saying, in her words, âWe like to reach out to all kids.â She says funding for the Music Park started last fall with the Road Runner Run and continued with other events throughout the school year.
Pilon says the company which is shipping the instruments sells other musical pieces, and the PTO may purchase more items from them in the future. Due to the durable nature of the instruments, she expects the Music Park to last for many years. She says the instruments should arrive in about two weeks. (TT)
Hartland Township leaders cut the ribbon on a new and improved park that was years in the making.
Tuesday evening marked the official opening of the new pavilion, playscape, and mountain bike trail at Settlerâs Park. Members of the Hartland Township Board of Trustees were present along with around 35 members of the Motor City Mountain Biking Association, or MCMBA. The MCMBAâs investment made the new bike trail possible. Supervisor Bill Fountain said this completes the bulk of the work for the townshipâs park project that started nearly 3 years ago. He said after acquiring the property from the sewer district a decade ago, they began gathering community input for what they wanted at both Settlerâs Park and Heritage Park.
The 40-by-60 pavilion houses 8 picnic tables and can be reserved, free of charge to Hartland residents, by contacting the township offices. The new playground features several slides, slides and climbing obstacles for kids.The mountain bike trail stretches around 2 miles of the 100-acre park and is designated multi-use for both bikers and walkers. MCMBA Trail Coordinators said they hope to extend it even farther in the future. These improvements, including the play scape, and similar renovations to Heritage Park, were all paid for through general fund dollars. Settlerâs Park is located on Clark Road, next to the Hartland Township Hall. (MK)
A local fire department is inviting the public out to share a cup of joe with them for a special day later this month.
The Lyon Township Fire Department is hosting Coffee with the Chief on Saturday, June 16th, from 9am until 10:30am at the department headquarters. Fire Chief Ken Van Sparrentak and other members of the department will be on hand to meet and greet with residents in a personal, informal environment. Whether itâs friendly conversation or questions about how the fire millage is being spent, the Fire Department hopes everyone in the community can make it out.
The Lyon Township Fire Department Headquarters is located at 58-800 Grand River Avenue in New Hudson. Those interested in attending are asked to RSVP by sending an email to Mary Mosesso at firstname.lastname@example.org. (MK)
A local author hopes to serve up a hometown slice of mystery with her latest release, which will debut this week.
Darci Hannah of Howell had previously published two works of historical fiction, but found that it lacked popular appeal. So she turned to what she calls "cozy mysteries," usually set in small towns with more of a PG-13 feel. That led her to write âCherry Pies & Deadly Lies,â set to be released Friday at a book launch and cherry pie bake-off.
In the book, the main character rushes back to her small Wisconsin hometown of Cherry Cove after her father is accused of murder during a cherry blossom festival. Hannah, speaking on WHMI's Mike & Jon in the Morning, says the idea to hold a cherry pie bake-off as part of the release party just made sense. "I am so excited by it, because its not only a celebration of a book, which is kind of a weird thing. I'm excited about the book, but its also about coming together as a community and I tell you Howell is a fabulous place. It is a small town and when I think of a small town and I write about it...Howell is in my head."
The book launch and bake-off to celebrate âCherry Pies & Deadly Lies,â will be held from 6 to 7:30pm this Friday at the Howell Carnegie District Library. The deadline to enter the bake-off is Thursday. Anyone interested can call the library at 517-546-0720 ext. 131 or email email@example.com. (JK)
A Brighton woman was honored for her volunteerism in helping victims of trauma with an award recognizing the power of giving.
Wendy Jo Morrison (left) is one of 38 winners of the 2018 Governorâs Service Award, which she was presented with at a ceremony Tuesday held at the Wharton Center in East Lansing. Morrison was specifically named âVolunteer of the Yearâ, acknowledging her work in healing trauma victims.
Morrison founded UBU Today; a nonprofit organization that uses natural methods of healing, like Biodynamic Breath and Trauma Release. Morrison discovered the method while in Greece and is the only person in the United States with a certification in the practice. She was prompted to explore options in healing as a trauma victim herself. Morrison was kidnapped in 1993 and assaulted for hours before escaping. She tells WHMI that experience is what encouraged her to help others.
Morrison says she waited 20 years before finding a modality to heal the residual trauma from the incident, which contributed to her being diagnosed with a terminal brain disease called Multiple System Atrophy, or MSA, in 2010. She says the autoimmune disease can be caused by extended exposure to stress and unresolved trauma, and cannot be treated with traditional medicine, leading to the creation of UBU Today.
Morrison says she is âextremely humbledâ to receive the Governorâs Service Award and that she never imagined sheâd be honored for the work she was called to do to save her own life. She was nominated for the governorâs award by UBU Project Director, Julie Melody (right), who says sheâs amazed at Morrisonâs vision, authenticity of her work and her ability to change lives. Melody says, âWendy is responsible for all of that and so she is well-deserving of this award.â
More information about UBU Today can be found at the link below. (DK)
The permit process for past and future improvement projects at Spicer Orchards is moving along.
The Hartland Township Board met Tuesday and approved a special land use permit for the farm market and winery on site. It was determined the proposed special use, a farm market and winery, meet standards and is compatible with the townshipâs comprehensive plan but also add diversity to Hartlandâs economy. The special use permit was sought for inclusion of a winery and wine tasting room as ancillary uses to existing operations. The approval was retro-active since repair and expansion work was previously done on site without required building or land use permits from Hartland Township and Livingston County.
In December, the townshipâs Planning Department was informed improvements were made to the kitchen in the farm market building sans permit or approval. A wine-storage building was also constructed in 2014 under what officials believe was an expired land use permit. Officials found that while the majority of that building was being used to store tanks and grapes, part of it had been converted into a wine tasting room. That was not approved as part of the previously-issued land use permit. Although retroactive, a special land use permit was still needed to allow for the wine tasting room. Officials have noted there have been a number of permits Spicerâs has applied and been granted approval for, which may have contributed to some of the confusion.
Supervisor Bill Fountain says itâs not something that happens very often but things come along requiring everybody to take a step back and make sure theyâre working together for the health, safety and welfare of people. He tells WHMI Spicerâs has been around for a long time, along with some other venues, and records and zoning ordinances were a little bit different in the past based on the rural atmosphere of Hartland. Fountain says Spicerâs has added some different entertainment venues over the years including a winery as theyâve grown. He says they wanted to make sure everyone was on the same page for success and now they know where everything is on the site. He says it was good to go through the process and the owners were wonderful to work with.
The special use permit from the township was needed in order for the owners of Spicerâs to obtain a separate land use permit from Livingston County. That permit is required for interior improvements for the wine tasting room and bakery hoods in the farm market building. (JM)
45-year-old Daniel Delavergne was bound over to Livingston County Circuit Court Tuesday on charges of unlawful posting of a message, child sexually abusive material, and using a computer to commit a crime.
Delavergne was arrested following an investigation conducted by the Michigan State Police (MSP) Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, which was prompted by a tip forwarded to MSP. A search of the residence where Delavergne was living in Fowlerville netted multiple electronic devices and evidence.
If convicted on the current charges, he faces up to 14 years in prison. Future court dates for Delavergne are unknown at this time.
The MSP encourages anyone with information regarding possible child sexual exploitation to report it to the CyberTipline through the link below.. (DK)
City of Brighton officials held an informal meeting to answer residentâs questions about major road work being done on North Second Street. A $2.2-million project will replace water and sewer mains, curb and gutters, and lay new pavement for the project which will take until mid-November to complete.
The first phase includes closing First Street and Second Street from millpond Lane to Walnut Street. This was originally planned to begin this coming Monday, June 11, but has been pushed back to the week of June 18. Phase two will see work at the intersection of Cross Street and North Second Street. During this phase, traffic will be closed to southbound traffic on Second Street, but will be maintained on the northbound side. For phase three, traffic will shift to southbound only, with northbound closed.
Public Works Director Marcel Goch said aging infrastructure dating back to 1939 is the main cause for the work needing to be done. Water and sewer lines are at max capacity and flow and are being upgraded in both size and dependability of material.
Goch led an informal meeting with other officials for residents at City Hall on Wednesday. Residents expressed a concern about water safety during the project. They were assured that residences would be hand delivered notices as soon as the city knows an interruption in service is planned. The information will also be posted on the cityâs website and social media pages. Others werenât pleased about their sidewalks being replaced and rebuilt to a larger, 5-foot width. 5-feet is the cityâs standard in an effort to make a more walkable and ADA-compliant downtown area. While at times stretches of Second Street will be closed to regular traffic, residents were assured they would retain access to their homes throughout the entirety of the project. Trash and mail services should see zero disruption. Updates through all 3 phases of this project can be found and tracked online at www.brightoncity.org. (MK)
A pair of Livingston Countyâs specialty courts were paid a visit from a member of the stateâs highest court. Wednesday afternoon, Michigan Supreme Court Justice Elizabeth Clement observed proceedings for the Intensive Treatment Mental Health Court and Adult Drug Treatment Court at the Judicial Center in Howell.
Justice Clement said these programs both have a tremendous impact on those who participate. She shared that data from a recent Michigan Supreme Court report, Solving Problems, Saving Lies, shows that these specialty courts are effective both locally and across the state. The report reveals a positive impact on re-offense rates and unemployment. Justice Clement said that adult participants are more likely to gain work and re-integration into the community, while the number of those who commit an offense within 2 years of graduation drastically drops.
Justice Clement said it was interesting to see the way that Circuit Court Judge Michael Hatty handled the Adult Drug Treatment Court. She was smiling throughout most of the proceedings, as Judge Hatty checked in on the participants, asking them how their lives and recovery are going in a very personable manner. With the Mental Health Courts, Justice Clement recognized that District Court Judge Suzanne Geddis faces a very different kind of challenge. Many participants in that program often have coexisting problems with substance abuse requiring Judge Geddis to show flexible amounts of compassion depending on each situation. Justice Clement seemed impressed with the work being done in the specialty courts, saying she could see a sense of hope and healing. She said she could feel a positive attitude in participants, and believes the county is set up to help them with support they need to get back on the right path, even if there are roadblocks and stumbles along the way. (MK)
Livingston Countyâs congressman has introduced legislation to rename the 8th District Post Office in honor of a well-known World War II Veteran from Howell.
Congressman Mike Bishop introduced the legislation Wednesday, on the 74th anniversary of D-Day. It would designate the United States Post Office at 325 South Michigan Avenue the âSergeant Donald Burgett Post Office Buildingâ. Burgett, an Army paratrooper, participated in the opening operations of the Normandy Invasion. He passed away on March 23rd of 2017 at the age of 91. Bishop honored his service and lasting legacy in a speech before colleagues in the House of Representatives. He says the post office designation to honor the memory of Burgett is one small way to recognize and remember the sacrifice of veterans. Bishop said âSeventy-four years ago today, Sergeant Burgett stormed the beaches of Normandy with more than 150,000 Allied forces to begin the liberation of Europe. We owe our freedoms to courageous veterans like Don â he is a truly great American whose legacy is absolutely deserving of this honor.â
Burgett was a member of the 101st Airborne, A Company, and he fought throughout the European theater, including Normandy on D-Day, the Netherlands during Operation Market Garden, and Bastogne. Sergeant Burgett returned to the United States and lived almost his entire adult life in Howell. He published four books, including Currahee!, published in 1967 and endorsed by President Dwight D. Eisenhower. In addition to his writing, he was also an active member of several veteransâ organizations including the VFW, American Legion, Disabled American Veterans, and the Military Order of the Cootie. He was a local builder, and loved spending time outdoors.
The legislation now heads to the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. (JM)
The City of Brighton will be holding a series of public informational open houses regarding the Headlee Override millage proposal on the ballot in August.
Voters are being asked to override the Headlee Amendment so the city can levy the full 20-mills authorized under the city charter. The city currently levies about 15.65 mills. The $1.85 million in annual revenues derived from the extra tax money would be used to upgrade city streets, which overall are in a state of serious disrepair.
Under the Headlee Amendment, taxes cannot exceed the rate of inflation or 5%; and must go according to the lower of those two figures. Initially, the Headlee override request had no expiration date, meaning if passed, it could continue in perpetuity. But in getting feedback from the public, council realized that a sunset clause â or termination date âwould have to be put on the ballot question if it had any chance of passing. After lengthy discussion, council voted unanimously to ask the voters for a 4.3-mill override over 10 years. The city will be holding the upcoming public informational open houses on Wednesdays in three different locations as a convenience to neighborhood residents. The dates are as follows:
June 13, 6pmâ8pm Police Department 440 S. Third St.
June 27, 6pmâ8pm City Hall 200 N. First St.
July 11, 6pmâ8pm Community Center 555 Brighton St.
July 25, 6pmâ8pm City Hall 200 N. First St.
Participants will have an opportunity to ask questions, discuss concerns, and share ideas with staff. (JM)
Testing for contaminants on property owned by Green Oak Township has wrapped up, while officials wait for the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality to finalize the report to be shared with residents.
Environmental consultant, Hydro-Logic Associates, has been testing soil and groundwater on 3.35 acres of township-owned property located on Rushton Road, after heavy metals were discovered four feet below the landâs surface. Testing was requested by the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality based on the propertyâs proximity to wetlands.
Township Supervisor Mark St. Charles says Hydro-Logic has finalized its report and is awaiting sign-off from the DEQ. After that, St. Charles says the township plans to hold an informational meeting for property neighbors to update them on the testâs results.
The DEQ and Environmental Protection Agency will require the township to install fencing around the property, though the exact area to be blocked off wonât be established until the DEQ weighs in.
St. Charles says there have been rumors circulating that the township is selling the property, but that those are false, adding the township cannot dissolve its responsibility until the siteâs contaminant and fencing issues have been rectified. If township officials do decide to put the property up for sale in the future, it may include deed restrictions regarding its allowable uses. Still, St. Charles reiterates, ââ¦right now, no, weâre not selling the property.â (DK)