Harrison Township OKs police, fire and general ops millage

By: Dean Vaglia | Mount Clemens-Clinton-Harrison Journal | Published August 5, 2022

HARRISON TOWNSHIP — A millage increase to fund police, fire and general operations was approved in Harrison Township Aug. 2 with 51.6% of the vote.

“It really was more of a renewal than it was an increase,” Township Supervisor Ken Verkest said. “Although it certainly comes across as an increase and legally you have to call it an increase, but … if you take the final three numbers and you add them together, the first number is not the amount that we are able to levy.”

The proposal increases the millage by 0.6175 mills to 9.25 mills ($9.25 per $1,000 of taxable property value), which would allow the township to maintain its current tax rate of 8.7 mills with 6.35 mills going to fire and 2.35 mills for police.

“I think that the issue of the Headlee rollback and how inflation impacts taxable millage rates and things like that, I think that is where some of the confusion is,” Verkest said. “In order to have a millage rate that lasts four years, that stays at 8.7 (mills), you have to request a higher number because it gets rolled back in years two, three and four.”

Had the proposal failed in August, Verkest said the plan was to run it again in November while educating the public in the meantime.

“I am comfortable that a majority of the people would be okay with leaving the tax break where it is,” Verkest said. “But if you say it’s an increase and (someone is) opposed to that, then you might vote against it.”