Voters to decide on Center Line officials, VDPS bond

Warren Weekly | Published October 23, 2013

On Nov. 5, voters in Center Line will be asked to pick the city’s mayor for the next four years. The ballot also includes four candidates seeking two four-year seats on the Center Line City Council. Candidates were asked, in 150 words or fewer, to state the top items they would wish to accomplish if elected and how they would go about accomplishing them. If a candidate went over their word limit, ( … ) replaced the rest of their answer. (I) indicates the candidate is an incumbent. The answers are printed verbatim.

Van Dyke Public Schools voters also will be asked to approve an operating millage renewal proposal.

Center Line Mayor
Two candidates are running for one four-year term

David W. Hanselman (I)
Age: 71
Occupation: Mayor, City of Center Line
Municipality of residence: City of Center Line
For how long: 60 years
Education: Center Line High School, Class of 1960
Previous elected offices: City of Center Line: Councilman - 28 years, Mayor - 4 years
Top goals:
1. Continue to revitalize residential streets, business district, and public spaces: The previous mayor shut down the Downtown Development Authority (DDA) and Beautification Commission which have been restarted and are thriving.  Rehabilitated storefronts, new street lighting and hanging baskets on Van Dyke and 10 Mile, community gardens, and additional blight inspector improve our community for residents, businesses, and visitors.

2. Continue sound fiscal policies and balanced budgeting: Turning a projected $400,000 budget deficit created by the previous mayor into $1.2 million accumulated surplus over four years restored Center Line’s strong fiscal standing and preserved our independence. We will continue to be good stewards of your tax dollars.

3. Continue to improve public services: Under my leadership the city will provide responsive public safety, clean streets, blight removal, and beautification, which residents expect, while balancing our budget.  Keeping streets safe, improving neighborhoods, and helping current and new businesses succeed are my highest priorities.

Mary Ann Zielinski
Age: 73
Occupation: Housewife
Municipality of residence: City of Center Line
For how long: 48 years
Education: Macomb Community College
Previously held elected offices: All with City of Center Line – 1975-1981 (6 years) councilwoman; 1981-1997 (16 years) mayor; 2001-2009 (8 years) mayor. Total of 6 years as councilwoman and 24 years as mayor.
Top goals:
My reasons for once again seeking election as your mayor.

Rinke granted 12 year, 50 % tax exemption. City’s revenue loss, minimum $800,000 (Also, our Patrol Officers provide nightly security services for Rinke.)

False promises that 7.5 mill tax increase would provide more Patrol Officers and Civilian Dispatchers. As of June, four less Patrol Officers. Officers continue dispatching. (Estimated $66.00 hourly.)

Mayor has conspired with Councilman Chakur to seek re-election, then resign shortly afterwards. Allowing mayor to appoint replacement. Nullifying peoples’ votes.

2009, opponent falsely proclaimed I’d let Warren take-over OUR City. All discussions regarding “sharing services,” included Councilman Hanselman.

Opponent alleges being left with “deficit budget.” Councilman Hanselman participated in the budget process, and State law prohibits adoption of “deficit budgets.”

If elected my goal is to restore honest leadership. This will not be “Rinkeville” nor Warren.

Please call 758-7290, with questions or to help.

Center Line City Council
Four candidates are running for two four-year terms

Nicholas R. Chakur (I)
Age: 57
Occupation: Police Officer
Municipality of residence: Center Line
For how long: 50 years
Education: 2 Associate Degrees from Macomb Community College. Working towards BA at Eastern University, Attended FBI National Academy
Previously held elected offices: Councilman for the City of Center Line
Top goals:

Keep Center Line its own city. We have been a city since 1936 and I wish to keep it that way. Sharing services like Police/Fire, Recreation and DPW leads to problems. We have a dedicated work force here, most who have served this city for a long time. I want to keep it that way.

Grow businesses in the city. We have some prime locations along Van Dyke. I want to attract businesses to build in those locations to bring more people to the city.

Euphemia P. Franklin
Did not return questionnaire by press time.

Mary Frances Hafner (I)
Age: 53
Occupation: Barber at Gingle’s Barber Shop 33 yrs
Municipality of residence: Center Line
For how long: 22 years
Education: All required and graduated City Barber College 1980
Previously held elected offices: Councilwoman City of Center Line since 1997
Top goals:
If re-elected I would continue to research and vote in ways that ensure that the residents, business owners and visitors of Center Line have a viable, clean, and safe gem of a city to be in.Four years ago, Center Line’s finances were looking very dismal. We didn’t want to have to merge police to have to merge our police and fire services with the surrounding community. We wanted to keep the speedy response time and active patrol the same. Thanks to millage passing, we still have that security.

Three top administrators have been appointed by the council in the last four years, they have gone over the city’s finances and policies and found many ways to conduct the city’s business at a lesser cost and even free in some cases, thus saving the tax payers several hundreds and thousands of dollars. I’m thankful for these thoughtful sharp minded employees.

William E. Sherman
Did not return questionnaire by press time.

Van Dyke Public Schools operating millage renewal proposal
This proposal, if approved by the electors, will allow the Van Dyke Public Schools to continue to levy not more than the statutory rate of 18 mills on all property, except principal residence and other property exempted by law, required for the School District to receive revenues at the full per pupil foundation allowance permitted by the State of Michigan.

Shall the limitation on the total amount of taxes which may be assessed against all property, except principal residence and other property exempted by law, situated within the Van Dyke Public Schools, County of Macomb, State of Michigan, be increased as provided in the Michigan Constitution, in the amount of 18 mills ($18.00 on each $1,000 of taxable valuation), for a period of nine (9) years, from July 1, 2014 through June 30, 2023, inclusive, with 18 mills of the above being a renewal of millage which would otherwise expire on June 30, 2014? This millage would provide estimated revenues to the Van Dyke Public Schools of Three Million Seven Hundred Eighty Nine Thousand Eight Hundred Fifty Two ($3,789,852) Dollars during the 2014 calendar year, to be used for general operating purposes, if approved and levied.