Harper Woods residents choose school board, approve library millage

By: Brendan Losinski | Advertiser Times | Published November 8, 2016 | Updated November 9, 2016 3:28pm

Harper Woods residents went to the polls Nov. 8 and made their voices heard on two local issues: the Harper Woods Board of Education and the renewal of the Harper Woods Public Library’s operating millage.

Six candidates ran for three four-year terms on the Harper Woods school board. Voters brought back incumbents Tabithia Mahone and Regina Williams, and they added newcomer Tianna Spencer. Mahone received 1,033 votes, Williams received 1,534 and Spencer received 1,579.

The school board also had an open seat for a partial term ending on Dec. 31, 2018. This seat was taken by Tenisha Yancey, who already was on the board on an interim basis. She received 1,782 votes of 3,028 votes cast.

“Yes, this is a victory for me, but I don't look at it this way,” said Mahone. “The victory goes to our students, parents and the community too. Without them, I would have not been blessed to serve the board and see my dreams come true. I would like to say thank you to all who voted for me for another term. Without your support, this would have not have happened. I would like to see more parent engagement, involvement of the community and more programs to help our young generation on behavior conflict. I also wish to try to work on bringing some hands-on activities for the students who learn from doing rather than seeing. Working with these students is a big joy. I love what I do.”

Incumbent Jill Quarker was not returned to the board. She expressed her regret at not being able to further serve the school district in this way, but she believes the district as a whole is moving forward.

“The constituents of Harper Woods have exercised their voice in our great democracy,” said Quarker. “I wish the future board members much success in shaping the educational policies of our district.”

Voters approved the Harper Woods Public Library millage renewal by a margin of 5,070 to 1,568. This measure will renew a 1 mill levy ($1 for every $1,000 of taxable property value) to benefit the library’s general operating budget.

“The Friends of the Harper Woods Library, library director and library staff would like to say thank you to the residents of Harper Wood for their support of the renewal of the operating millage for the library,” said Mary Kingston, president of the Friends of the Harper Woods Library. “This millage renewal pays not only for books, DVDs and magazines, it also helps fund various library programs, computers, Wi-Fi, membership in the Suburban Library Cooperative, and even helps with the maintenance costs of the building. The Friends, library director and library staff are proud of our library and will continue to provide the library patrons with the best service possible.”

The millage will continue each year until 2023.