Macomb Community College millage passes

By: Maria Allard | Warren Weekly | Published May 9, 2018

 Macomb County voters approved an operating millage proposal May 8 for Macomb Community College.

Macomb County voters approved an operating millage proposal May 8 for Macomb Community College.

File photo by Edward Osinski

MACOMB COUNTY — On May 8, Macomb County voters approved an operating millage proposal for Macomb Community College, which will renew the college’s millage for 20 years and restore it to the rate previously approved by voters.

According to the unofficial results from the Macomb County Clerk’s Office, 34,739 voters, or 52.6 percent, cast their ballots in favor of the proposal, against 31,307 no votes.

According to college officials, the millage is 26 percent of the college’s $135 million operational budget and is vital to ensuring that the college has the faculty, staff and resources necessary to provide the education and training that connects residents to workplace opportunity.

The proposal was not a new millage, but the renewal of an existing one. The approved millage will update and replace the current operating millage and will run from 2018 through 2038.

 “We appreciate the community’s support and commitment to preserve Macomb Community College’s long-standing role as Macomb County’s indispensable education and training resource,” MCC President James O. Sawyer IV said in a prepared statement. “Our residents’ willingness to continue to invest in the college to ensure local access to training in high-demand fields as well as an affordable start to a bachelor’s degree underscores the true nature of partnership between the community and the college, and our shared dedication to bolstering economic vitality.”

Since the 2000 election, the college has been subject to seven Headlee rollbacks, reducing that millage rate to its current 1.4072 mills. According to college officials, the reduction equates to approximately $1.5 million annually.

The millage will provide estimated operating revenues to the college of $38 million during the 2018 calendar year, according to the ballot language provided by the Macomb County Clerk’s Office.

At the Jan. 17 MCC Board of Trustees meeting, the board voted 6-0 to place a renewal millage on the ballot. All the trustees in attendance voted yes: Kristi Dean, Joseph DeSantis, Roseanne DiMaria, Jennifer Haase, Katherine Lorenzo and Vincent Viviano. Trustee Frank Cusumano was absent.

“Approval of the renewal and restoration proposal is a vote of confidence by residents in the work that the college does and the significant impact it has on our county and region,” MCC Board of Trustees Chair Jennifer Haase said in a prepared statement. “I want to thank the community for their support and assure them that Macomb Community College will continue to provide the programs and resources that position our residents and county for success.”