Clinton Township Supervisor Robert Cannon listens to a presentation at the Board of Trustees meeting on March 27.

Clinton Township Supervisor Robert Cannon listens to a presentation at the Board of Trustees meeting on March 27.

Photo by Patricia O’Blenes

Clinton Township board sets 2023-2024 budget

By: Dean Vaglia | C&G Newspapers | Published April 3, 2023


CLINTON TOWNSHIP —  Clinton Township has a budget for the 2023-2024 fiscal year as of the March 27 Board of Trustees meeting. The township’s fiscal year ends on March 31 and begins on April 1 annually.

First presented to the board on March 13, several changes were made to the budget before the meeting. An additional $30,380 was added to the 2024 parks capital outlay in order to pay for the Neil Reid Park comfort station addition; $81,800 was added to the 2024 equipment lease budget in the Fire Department fund to pay for rented equipment; and $426,358 was added to the 2024 Police Department fund expenditures to cover the 41B District Court subsidy.

Increases were made to the Municipal Employees’ Retirement System and retiree health care funds, bringing the 2024 total MERS contribution expenditures up to about $2.5 million and retiree health care expenses up to about $2.7 million across the general, fire and police funds.

“(Increasing these funds) is a decision we’ve made and the board has approved for the past (several) years,” Township Clerk Kim Meltzer said. “I think the public needs to know that we are committed to our retirees in our police and fire (departments), as well as employees and it’s a very important part of our overall budget.”

One member of the public asked the board to shift the maintenance responsibility of the 16 Mile Road and spillway bike paths to the county and drainage board, respectively, though Township Supervisor Robert Cannon said this cannot be done.

“We can’t turn over the bike path to the county; they won’t take it,” Cannon said. “It’s our bike path. Either we fix it, repair it or leave it the way it is and have lawsuits. The same thing is true with the drain board.”

Another question concerned the increased cost of a lift station project, which officials ascribed to built-in contingencies and other costs for the project such as engineering expenses.


George George/Woodrow Woody parks contract
The board also approved a reduction in the cost of a project at two township parks.

Originally contracted out at $1,116,142 to build an auxiliary parking lot at George George Park and Woodrow Woody Park and a universally accessible kayak launch along the Clinton River, an examination of how project costs could be reduced has lowered the cost of work to $1,077,562 — a reduction of $38,580. Jim George has also donated $150,000 to help with the project costs and $50,000 for landscaping-related amenities around the project areas. State and county grants are also helping pay for the projects at $340,000.

Department of Public Services Director Mary Bednar informed the board that the work will likely conflict with marriage and prom photography season and to expect complaints related to this issue.

Romulus-based Best Asphalt, Inc. remains the contractor on the project.


Challenger Adult Field grant application
The board approved submitting an application to the Kubota Tractor Corp. Hometown Proud grant contest to support the Challenger Field project. The contest will award five projects across the United States $100,000, with an additional $100,000 going to the winner of the Kubota Community Choice Award, pending a vote this summer.

Brought to the board by Office of Emergency Management Coordinator Paul Browler, the grant and subsequent vote award was presented as a way to close the funding gap for adding an adult-oriented field.

“Currently, we have raised about $195,000 towards the Challenger Field project,” Browler said in a letter to the board. “The cost (is) estimated to be in the $350,000 range. This grant, if successfully awarded, would go a long way in making this field a reality.”

Challenger Field is located at Neil Reid Park and is designed to support baseball and softball activities for the Clinton Valley Little League’s Challenger Division, which is open to children with disabilities. A “senior” league for players 16 and older is also available, and the grant funds would go toward building a field to accommodate the older players.