Attention Readers: Find Us in Your Mailbox Soon
With the coronavirus stats going in the right direction, all of us at C&G Newspapers look forward to resuming publication of the St. Clair Shores Sentinel and Birmingham-Bloomfield Eagle on May 27th. All other C&G newspapers will begin publishing on June 10th (Advertiser-Times on June 24th). In the meantime, continue to find local news on our website and look for us on Facebook and Twitter.

Farmington, Hills residents to vote on county offices, zoo millage

Farmington Press | Published July 20, 2016

In the Press’ coverage area, voters will decide state and county offices in the Aug. 2 primary election. Candidates in a contested race — contested within a party — were asked, in 150 words or fewer, to state the top items they wish to accomplish if elected and how they would go about accomplishing them. If a candidate went over the word limit, ( … ) replaces the rest of their answer. (I) indicates that the candidate is an incumbent. The answers are printed verbatim.


Oakland County Board of Commissioners District 13
Two candidates are running for the Republican nomination and one candidate is running for the Democratic nomination to compete for one two-year term in November.

Republican
Michelle Dinardo
Age: 48
Occupation: Compliance and Operations Administrator
Municipality of residence: Farmington Hills
For how long: 1 year, lived in West Bloomfield last 20 years.
Online campaign information: No answer given
Education: B.S. Financial Administration from Indiana University
Previously held elected offices: None
Top goals: 1. Maintaining a balanced budget with fiscal responsibility; keep spending in line with revenue.
2. Maintain our AAA bond rating, which saves residents thousands of dollars in interest payments.
3. No tax increases for residents. Allot funds for what is needed to best benefit residents of Oakland County and not special interests.

Republican
Max Rohtbart
Age: 25
Occupation: Student
Municipality of residence: West Bloomfield
For how long: 10 years
Online campaign information: maxforoakland.nationbuilder.com
Education: Currently Student at Oakland University
Previously held elected offices: Precinct Delegate since 2010
Top goals:  I have a four-part platform. Michigan roads are ranked near the bottom nationally, yet we pay some of the highest gas taxes. I plan to use existing revenue to expand our county’s matching fund program to compliment state money to fix the roads.
I plan to improve our water infrastructure so that what happened in Flint will not happen here. The City of Birmingham recently began to replace its aging pipes. I want to duplicate that program in our own community.
No more pay raises for our county commissioners. They gave themselves a 5% pay raise last year. I will not accept pay raises if elected to the commission. Our AAA bond rating must be maintained, it lowers what taxpayers have to pay on our various local bond issues. Maximize your vote on August 2nd and vote for Max Rohtbart

Democrat
Marcia Gershenson (I)
Running unopposed


Oakland County Board of Commissioners District 14
One candidate is running for the Republican nomination, and one candidate is running for the Democratic nomination to compete for one two-year term in November.

Republican
Bill Dwyer (I)
Running unopposed

Democrat
William Miller III
Running unopposed


Oakland County Board of Commissioners District 21
One candidate is running for the Republican nomination, and one candidate is running for the Democratic nomination to compete for one two-year term in November.

Republican
Richard A. Van Camp
Running unopposed

Democrat
Janet Jackson (I)
Running unopposed


Oakland County Executive
Two candidates are running for the Democratic nomination, and one candidate is running for the Republican nomination to compete for one four-year term in November.

Republican
L. Brooks Patterson (I)
Running unopposed

Democrat
Vicki Barnett
Age: 61
Occupation: Consultant for Emerge America
Municipality of residence: Farmington Hills
For how long: 35 years (I have lived in Oakland County my entire life)
Online campaign information: Vicki Barnett for Oakland County
Education: MBA from University of Michigan Dearborn 1993; BGS from University of Michigan Dearborn 1981
Previously held elected offices: State Representative for the 37th District, 2009-2014, Mayor of Farmington Hills, 2003-2007, Farmington Hills City Council Member, 1995-2003
Top goals: 1) Economic Development (County has lost 16% of its jobs since 2007): Expand focus to include agriculture/urban farming technology; invest in job training; require “clawbacks” of corporate tax subsidies when promised jobs are not created; institute county purchasing guidelines to support women-, minority- and veteran-owned small businesses; support RTA so workers can get to jobs, and to encourage redevelopment around transit hubs and reduce pollution.
2) Poverty (County poverty rate is up 76% since 2005): Expand pre-school education; increase access to health care; improve support for Community Mental Health; invest in programs to end homelessness (average age of homeless person is 8!).
3) Infrastructure and Environment: Test drinking water in schools and child care centers for lead; enact “fix it first” policy for roads and bridges; ban deep injection fracking around county lakes and streams; institute inspection and repair schedule for all private underground transportation pipes.

Democrat
Mark Allen Danowski
Age: 58
Occupation: Eligibility Specialist for State of Michigan DHHS
Municipality of residence:  Rose Township
For how long: 18 years / 32 in Oakland County
Online campaign information: Mark Danowski for County Executive on Facebook
Education: Bachelor of Science in Earth Science and a double minor in History and Coastal Environments from Eastern Michigan University
Previously held elected offices: None
Top goals: My first priority is to revive our middle class through a series of initiatives that will help make Oakland County prominent in the renewable energy industries and create significant manufacturing jobs, the building of the “Small Towns” bike path will create jobs and welcome growth, and the new Regional Transit master plan will provide transportation to allow residents a way to get to and from employment.
My second priority is to reduce costs. This will be achieved by phasing in new county facilities that are self-sustaining smart buildings that use the latest technologies to make them incredibly energy efficient. The initial costs will be offset through energy savings, it will save taxpayers millions in the long run and stimulate job growth.
Lastly I will deal with environmental issues through EPIC a consortium that brings together college research teams and environmental engineers to develop new technologies to protect our natural resources.


Oakland County Clerk/Register of Deeds
Two candidates are running for the Republican nomination, and two candidates are running for the Democratic nomination to compete for one four-year term in November.

Republican
Tina Louise Barton
Age: 44
Occupation: City Clerk for the City of Rochester Hills
Municipality of residence:  Springfield Township
For how long: 16 years
Online campaign information:  www.bartonforcountyclerk.com
Education: Master of Arts – Management and Leadership, Bachelor of Arts – Business Administration
Previously held elected offices: None, I’m appointed in my current role
Top goals: Protect the Integrity of Elections - New election equipment is in the process of being certified and considered by the Bureau of Elections.  The Clerks of each county will be selecting the equipment to be used in their county. I am the candidate with years of experience using election equipment and that understands the needs of Clerks, election workers, and communities. As your County Clerk, I will ensure that election laws are followed, voter rolls are secure, and election fraud prevention is a top priority.
Collaboration – I will engage citizens, attorneys, title companies, and employees in discussions about becoming more user-friendly and efficient. I will empower employees to be creative and innovative with solutions.
Fiscally Conservative – More with less is possible when you work smarter, not harder. I will leverage the technological resources Oakland County has to streamline processes and procedures.

Republican
Bill Bullard Jr.
Age: 72
Occupation: Consultant
Municipality of residence:  Highland Township
For how long: 42 years
Online campaign information: www.billbullard.com
Education: B.A. University of Michigan; J.D. Detroit College of Law.
Previously held elected offices:   Oakland County Clerk/Register of Deeds; County Commissioner (Chair of the County Commission six years); State Senator; State Representative; Highland Township Trustee & Supervisor
Top goals: I am the only candidate in the Republican Primary running for Oakland County Clerk/Register who has experience as Clerk/Register. I was a successful Clerk/Register who won six national service awards for new innovative programs. I want to accomplish as Clerk/Register
1.) More electronic transactions--e-filing and e-recording. These transactions are more convenient for the customers and save taxpayers dollars.
2.) I implemented “Express Deeds” which allows a person recording a deed to walk out of the office in 3-4 minutes with a fully recorded document. I will re-install the streamlined electronic recording system I implemented.
3.) Increased outreach by scheduling more mobile offices and more visits to Farmer’s Markets. Any transaction that can be completed in the Pontiac office can be completed off site. The present Clerk did just a handful of mobile offices before a slight uptick in mobile offices this election year.

Democrat
Lisa Brown (I)
Age: 49
Occupation: Oakland County Clerk/Register of Deeds
Municipality of residence: West Bloomfield
For how long: 25 years
Online campaign information:  LisaBrown4Michigan.com
Education: B.S., Michigan State University; J.D., Detroit College of Law
Previously held elected offices: State Representative 2009-2012
Top goals: 1) I want to insure every citizen has access to the ballot. I have held voter registration drives around the county and will continue to do so. I have worked with the State’s Bureau of Elections and L. Brooks Patterson’s senior staff on the purchase of new voting equipment for Oakland County and will work with our municipal clerks to make our selection.
2) I will continue to fight fraud in the Register of Deeds office. I brought Super Index, a free searchable database, and Property Records Notification, a free alert system, the first of its kind in the country, earning an award from the National Association of Counties, to Oakland County.
3) To continue providing accessibility to services by more local office visits and Passport Days (office open on Saturday), and programs I pushed for, like eliminating the fee for Veterans cards, while continuing to cut expenditures.

Democrat
Michael D. Smith
Age: 35
Occupation: Current Deputy City Clerk for the City of Clawson – prior 6 years experience working at the Oakland County Clerks Office
Municipality of residence: White Lake Township
For how long: for over 35 years – except while attending GVSU for college
Online campaign information: www.smithforcountyclerk.com
Education: Bachelor of Science in Liberal Studies with an emphasis in Leadership & Diversity from Grand Valley State University in 2003. Master of Public Administration from Oakland University in 2008. Post Masters Certificate in Local Government Management from Oakland University in 2011.
Previously held elected offices: I was an elected School Board Member for the Walled Lake Consolidated School District from 2010-2013. I have been an elected Precinct Delegate as well since 2008.
Top goals: 1) Elections – I will advocate for no reason absentee voting, early voting, same day registration, and the continue efforts to fight for voters rights and the sanctity of open and secure elections. I will fight to create an Independent Redistricting Commission and to modernize our election equipment.
2) Outreach – I will create a culture that is open, fair, and one that listens to the people, both customers and employees, by reaching out through social media, education initiatives, satellite offices and local visits to increase communication and accessibility. I will push for the expansion of services online while also focusing on decreasing inline wait times.
3) Security – I will research the best practices across the nation to make sure our record keeping efforts are the most up to date, secure and user friendly that they can be to fight fraud and to allow for more transparency.


Oakland County Prosecuting Attorney
One candidate is running for the Republican nomination, and one candidate is running for the Democratic nomination for one four-year term in November.

Republican
Mike Goetz
Running unopposed

Democrat (I)
Jessica R. Cooper
Running unopposed


Oakland County Sheriff
One candidate is running for the Republican nomination, and one candidate is running for the Democratic nomination for one four-year term in November.

Republican
Michael J. Bouchard (I)
Running unopposed

Democrat
Craig S. Covey
Running unopposed


Oakland County Treasurer
One candidate is running for the Republican nomination, and one candidate is running for the Democratic nomination for one four-year term in November.

Republican
John P. McCulloch
Running unopposed

Democrat
Andy Meisner (I)
Running unopposed


Oakland County Water Resources Commissioner
One candidate is running for the Republican nomination, and one candidate is running for the Democratic nomination for one four-year term in November.

Republican
Robert E. Buxbaum
Running unopposed

Democrat
Jim Nash (I)
Running unopposed


State House of Representatives District 37
Two candidates are running for the Republican nomination, and one candidate is running for the Democratic nomination to compete for one two-year term in November.

Republican
Mitch Swoboda
Age: 60
Occupation: Retired
Municipality of residence: Farmington Hills
For how long: 8 years
Online campaign information: http://www.mitchswobodafor staterep.com/
Education: Some College
Previously held elected offices: Delegate
Top goals:  All taxes from the sale of gasoline should be earmarked for the roads. Not for the general fund. Take Better Care Of Our Veterans
-Treatment for PTSD
-Housing
-Proper Burial Service 
Maintain High Quality Police Services
-Safeguard FOIA Requests for private citizens. This is a serious problem for citizens and law enforcement agencies. Several police agencies have requested help on this issue. If there is a disturbance in your home that warrants police intervention, video of the disturbance is taken and is now, under the freedom of information act, available to the public, as well as your local news network. There are no safe guards in this situation to protect the privacy rights of the victims in these situations. This also creates serious storage, and time issues. It can take as much as 8 hours to process one FOIA request.
Create a Business Friendly Environment to Promote Jobs
-Repeal Job Killing Regulations
-Attract and retain (...)

Republican
Matt Beer
Did not return questionnaire by press time.

Democrat (I)
Christine Greig
Running unopposed


U.S. House of Representatives District 11
One candidate is running for the Republican nomination, and one candidate is running for the Democratic nomination to compete for one two-year term in November.

Republican
David A. Trott (I)
Running unopposed

Democrat
Anil Kumar
Running unopposed


U.S. House of Representatives District 14
One candidate is running for the Republican nomination, and three candidates are running for the Democratic nomination to compete for one two-year term in November.

Republican
Howard Klausner
Did not return questionnaire by press time.

Democrat
Brenda L. Lawrence (I)
Age: 61
Occupation: US Representative in Congress, MI-14
Municipality of residence:  Southfield
For how long: 31 years
Online campaign information:  brendalawrence.com
Education:  Central Michigan University, Public Administration
Previously held elected offices:  Mayor of Southfield, Southfield City Council, Southfield Schools Board of Trustees
Top goals: Sensible gun reform: I will continue to stand with my colleagues and demand action on common sense gun reforms.
Reinvestment in our nation’s infrastructure: I am working with my colleagues across the aisle as this is a national issue that has impact everywhere, we cannot stand by and allow another Flint to happen.
Education: We must improve access and affordability to education that will lead directly into jobs. I will continue my work promoting the skilled trades and public/private partnerships with universities.

Democrat
Terrance Morrison
Did not return questionnaire by press time.

Democrat
Vanessa Moss
Age: 53
Occupation: Attorney
Municipality of residence: Southfield
For how long: 23 years
Online campaign information:
http://www.vanessamoss4congress.com;
Education: Wayne State University B.A. 1987; University of Detroit School of Law Juris Doctor 1999
Previously held elected offices: Not applicable
Top goals: Greater employment opportunities, better education and increased safety are the top three things I wish to accomplish if elected. I would support legislation which would institute a living wage, strengthen job training and streamline our regulatory system. I would work to renew our commitment to quality public education, expand after school and summer programs, and renew our commitment to teacher funding. Additionally, I would fight to end the cradle-to-prison pipeline, improve public safety in our neighborhoods and work towards a more comprehensive approach to fighting crime.


OAKLAND COUNTY ZOOLOGICAL AUTHORITY RENEWAL MILLAGE
The Oakland County Zoological Authority was established pursuant to Public Act 49 of 2008 and formed to allow for continuing zoological services for the students, residents and visitors of Oakland County. The law allows the Authority to seek authorization from the electors to levy a tax on real and personal property to provide revenue to an accredited zoological institution for this purpose. Accordingly, as a renewal of the previously approved millage authorization which expires with the 2017 tax levy, to continue providing zoological services to benefit the residents of the County, shall the 0.1 mill (10 cents per $1,000 of taxable value) on all of the taxable property located within the County continue to be imposed for a period of ten (10) years, being years 2018 through 2027? It is estimated that if approved and levied, this millage would generate approximately $5,609,562 in 2018. Shall this proposal be adopted?