Roseville residents approve school bond proposal

MCC millage wins support in both Eastpointe and Roseville

By: Bria Brown | Roseville - Eastpointe Eastsider | Published May 9, 2018

 A sign placed along Gratiot Avenue near Roseville City Hall directs voters to Erin Auditorium May 8. Residents passed a school bond during the May 8 election.

A sign placed along Gratiot Avenue near Roseville City Hall directs voters to Erin Auditorium May 8. Residents passed a school bond during the May 8 election.

Photo by Bria Brown

 A sign at Eastpointe High School helps voters from two precincts find their polling place to cast their votes on the Macomb Community College millage proposal.

A sign at Eastpointe High School helps voters from two precincts find their polling place to cast their votes on the Macomb Community College millage proposal.

Photo by Bria Brown

ROSEVILLE/EASTPOINTE — The polls had a slow morning in Roseville and Eastpointe May 8, with less than 30 people having voted at some precincts more than two hours after the polls had opened. However, residents made their way out to pass a Roseville Community Schools bond proposal, and a majority of voters in both Roseville and Eastpointe favored the Macomb Community College millage renewal, which passed countywide.

Roseville Community Schools bond proposal

At around 9:30 a.m., the Roseville Public Library’s Erin Auditorium had seen only nine voters, and poll workers said that people were coming in one at a time. The Recreation Authority of Roseville and Eastpointe had served 25 voters as of around 10 a.m. Poll workers at the authority said that they had seen no more than three people at a time as of that point.

In the end, 2,068 voters supported the bond proposal, and 1,698 voters opposed it.

Since the $59.4 million, 26-year bond has been approved, it will levy 2.5 mills in 2018. A mill is equal to $1 per $1,000 of a home’s taxable value. A resident with a home with a taxable value of $45,000 will pay approximately $112. According to the school district, if property values remain stable in coming years, the millage will remain at 2.5 mills.

Board of Education President Theresa Genest told C & G Newspapers in late April that the monies would pay for items including band instruments, buses and computers.

Genest said May 9 that she is happy about the changes coming to the city for both residents and students because of the millage.

“Thanks to our community for our city’s sake and our children’s sake. They came out and supported us, and it was a great night,” said Genest.

Genest noted that the money cannot be spent on salaries; bond proceeds must be spent for items such as technology and site improvements.

“The money has to go toward that. It has to. When we submit our plan to the state, we can’t change what we’re going to buy with it. The state watches us very carefully,” she said.

Roseville City Clerk Richard Steenland said voter turnout was close to last year’s November election, but he did wish the May numbers were higher.

“It was about 12.1 percent, which is pretty similar to our last city election,” said Steenland. The election last November brought out 12.7 percent of voters.

May elections typically have a low voter turnout, Steenland said.

“People took time to come out and cast their ballot, so it’s a good thing for our city and the schools, especially,” he said.

Macomb Community College millage proposal

Eastpointe voters voted for one item on the May election ballot: the countywide Macomb Community College operating millage.

The approved proposal will permit MCC to levy 1.464 mills for a period of 20 years, which will support general operations including technology. The ballot also stated that the proposal combines, restores and continues prior operational and technology millages at the same level as initially approved by voters in 2000 for 1.464 mills, which are set to expire in 2020.

Around 10 a.m. May 8, Eastpointe High School — which housed two precincts — had seen only 14 voters.

Eastpointe Deputy Clerk Randy Altimus stated in an email to the Eastsider May 9 that voter turnout was lower than usual.

“I think part of the problem was that people aren't used to a May election,” he stated.

Eastpointe had 334 people vote at the polls, and 1,556 vote absentee, Altimus said. According to Macomb County, the turnout was 7.4 percent. A total of 991 voted for the millage, and 893 voted against it.

In Roseville, 2,094 voters supported the millage proposal, while 1,972 voted against it. Countywide, the millage passed 34,739 to 31,307.