Elected officials speak on goals, objectives for 2022

By: Mike Koury | Woodward Talk | Published January 14, 2022

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OAKLAND COUNTY — A new year means new resolutions, objectives and goals for those running municipalities in Oakland County.

C & G Newspapers reached out to members of local City Councils and City Commissions in Ferndale, Berkley, Huntington Woods and Pleasant Ridge to ask them what their goals were for their respectives cities in 2022.

Toward the end of last year, there was much conversation in Ferndale about the city’s facilities, such as the Kulick Community Center. Mayor Pro Tem Raylon Leaks-May said those conversations will continue with an assessment of those facilities ongoing.

Leaks-May said the talks will be both difficult and productive in determining what Ferndale needs to do about its buildings, and, for her, it currently is the biggest thing that the city is dealing with right now.

“Whether or not we’re going to keep them where they are, whether they’re going to consolidate, the conversations are happening and we’re going to have a committee of citizens as well as individuals with particular skill sets to be in those discussions,” she said.

Berkley Mayor Dan Terbrack also is looking at the City Council continuing an important conversation that the city had for much of 2021, and that had to do with its mariuana licensing process.

Terbrack said other issues that Berkley has to continue with are its study of Coolidge Highway following its lane reductions in 2019, park upgrades and discussion revolving around its community center.

“I still think that our community needs and deserves a new community center,” he said. “I have not given up researching and trying to find the right fit for Berkley, and we’re going to be listening to residents and figuring out exactly what our residents want.”

Huntington Woods City Commissioner Joe Rozell highlighted park and garden improvements and beautification as something residents have told him are needed. He said the city has been looking at dedicating some dollars and resources to make that happen.

Speaking of the city’s parks, Rozell said the city will undergo a parks inventory study this year to get a rundown of what parks have what resources, such as water access, picnic tables and other amenities.

“We want to do a comprehensive inventory and then sort of start the process of prioritizing of where do we start,” he said. “We recognize we’re not going to be able to do everything in one year, but at least we’re going to start the inventory process and then slowly begin the process of beautification.”

The big topic of conversation in Pleasant Ridge has had to do with its water infrastructure. In November, residents approved a water infrastructure millage that would levy up to 3.5 mills per year for 30 years to pay for lead service line and water main replacements.

The city currently is putting together a citizens advisory committee to review different plans of action and give feedback to the City Commission on the project and funding for its water infrastructure project. Members for that committee were up for approval at the commission’s Jan. 11 meeting, which took place after press time.

City Commissioner Ann Perry cited the issue as one of Pleasant Ridge’s big objectives.

“It’s something that impacts all of us,” she said. “Infrastructure is something that I think as a country we’re all looking at, but as a city it is so important. Especially a small city like Pleasant Ridge, you have to pay attention and keep on top of these things because big projects like this just can’t be absorbed into the budget.”

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