Local Government

Published December 28, 2016

MACOMB TOWNSHIP — After again being urged by residents at the start of a Macomb Township Board of Trustees meeting Dec. 21, township officials informed residents of the progress they’ve made regarding road safety measures near the location of several schools at Heydenreich and 21 Mile roads.

The board announced that it received an estimate from DTE for the cost of installing 87 street lights along Heydenreich from Hall to 22 Mile roads, and along 21 Mile, from Romeo Plank to Card roads.

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Published December 28, 2016

EASTPOINTE — Flood damage in 2014 allegedly due to Warren’s sewage disposal system caused Eastpointe to file a lawsuit against Warren Aug. 11, but according to a Dec. 6 press release from Eastpointe, Warren “plans to address long-running problems with its wastewater sewer system.”

According to the release, Warren Mayor Jim Fouts notified Eastpointe City Manager Steve Duchane about the plan.

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Published December 28, 2016

EASTPOINTE — Following the public announcement that the federal government had told Eastpointe to change its election process, the City Council held its first discussion of the proposed changes during its Dec. 20 meeting.

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Published December 28, 2016

Sterling Heights will continue to use services by the company that inherited the city’s waste hauling contract from Rizzo Environmental Services, according to an announcement at a Dec. 6 City Council meeting.

On Sept. 30, GFL Environmental USA Inc., an American subsidiary of Toronto-based GFL Environmental Inc., formally acquired Rizzo. According to city officials, GFL-USA is a domestic corporation registered in Delaware and headquartered in Sterling Heights. GFL stands for “Green For Life.”

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Published December 28, 2016

GROSSE POINTE FARMS — Given the recent polar vortex, almost no one could fault Grosse Pointe Farms City Councilman Martin West for wanting to spend more time in Arizona.

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Published December 28, 2016

UTICA — For 29 years, Utica Mayor Jacqueline Noonan has steered the direction of the city, spearheading efforts to improve local roads, revamp city buildings and the downtown area, improve the city’s amenities and put the city on the map.

On Dec. 13, Noonan chaired her last City Council meeting. During the meeting, she reflected briefly on her tenure and fought back tears. The City Council also voted 6-1 to rename Memorial Park the Jacqueline K. Noonan Riverwalk Park.

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Published December 23, 2016

ROYAL OAK — A familiar face will join the City Commission in January when former state Rep. Marie Donigan is sworn in as the commission’s newest member.

Donigan’s appointment was approved with a 5-1 vote during the Dec. 19 regular commission meeting. She will fill the commission vacancy created when Michael Fournier was appointed as mayor earlier this month following Jim Ellison’s resignation.

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Published December 21, 2016

WARREN — Five days after the emergence of audio recordings that allegedly feature the ugly, cold and insensitive words of Mayor Jim Fouts broadly disparaging the mentally disabled, a backlash boiled over during public comments offered before the Warren City Council.

Meeting on Dec. 20 for the first time since news of the controversial recordings broke, council members heard from dozens of people including residents, advocates for the disabled and a few skeptics concerned about the validity of the recordings and the timing of their release.

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Published December 21, 2016

SHELBY TOWNSHIP — On Dec. 7, the Shelby Township Board of Trustees unanimously approved the 2016 sidewalk gap program to close sidewalk gaps, primarily along Schoenherr Road, at a cost of $201,361.

The township retained its existing sidewalk maintenance contractor, Luigi Ferdinandi & Son Cement Co., because officials were satisfied with the work the company did in Shelby Township over the last three years.

“Additionally, the unit price will remain the same as it was in 2013,” Supervisor Rick Stathakis said.

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Published December 21, 2016

BIRMINGHAM — The concept plan for Poppleton Park, which the City Commission unanimously accepted Dec. 12, includes a new picnic shelter, a paved sidewalk and increased drainage for grassy areas.

But it’s short exactly 88 things that were originally proposed in the plan presented to the commission that night by Public Services Director Lauren Wood.

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Published December 21, 2016

BIRMINGHAM — If you’ve ever bought fresh apples at the Birmingham Farmers Market, admired holiday lights and garland adorning the downtown, or snuggled up with the kids for a summer movie night under the stars, then you’re probably familiar with the Birmingham Shopping District.

The BSD is a downtown development authority and then some, promoting community engagement and retail success in downtown Birmingham.

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Published December 20, 2016

ROYAL OAK — Presented with an oak gavel engraved with his name and “big shoes to fill,” Michael Fournier was named the city’s new mayor during a special Dec. 12 City Commission meeting.

Fournier, 37, was sworn into office by outgoing mayor Jim Ellison before taking the center seat in the commission chambers as leader of his first meeting.

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Published December 20, 2016

ROYAL OAK — Jim Ellison pounded his last gavel in Royal Oak City Hall last week before he was sent off with Hawaiian flair and parting comments during his final mayoral meeting.

Fellow commissioners donned Hawaiian-style shirts Dec. 12 during a special meeting where Ellison officially resigned as mayor of the city in which he was born and raised to prepare for his new role as 26th District state representative in the new year.

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Published December 20, 2016

WARREN — Five days after the emergence of audio recordings that allegedly feature the ugly, cold and insensitive words of Mayor Jim Fouts broadly disparaging the mentally disabled, a backlash boiled over during public comments offered before the Warren City Council.

Meeting on Dec. 20 for the first time since news of the controversial recordings broke, council members heard from dozens of people, including residents, advocates for the disabled, and a few skeptics concerned about the validity of the recordings and the timing of their release.

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Published December 16, 2016

On Dec. 15, subzero temperatures swept the county while things heated up inside the Sterling Heights Senior Center, where three Macomb County election recounts took place.

The Utica mayor recount began at 8 a.m. and wrapped up around 5:30 p.m. A group of six people carefully worked at a table in the Senior Center’s multipurpose room to count ballots cast for Thom Dionne, Councilman Frank Czapski and Edward Wykes.

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Published December 16, 2016

EASTPOINTE — City officials held a press conference Dec. 15 in the City Council chambers to discuss proposed changes to the way voters elect members of the City Council.

Eastpointe City Manager Steve Duchane received a letter from the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice Nov. 18 stating that the “existing system for electing the members of the Eastpointe City Council violates Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act.”

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Published December 16, 2016

WARREN — “I wish them well in a cage.”

That, and other incredibly insensitive and outrageous sound bites directed at mentally disabled individuals and allegedly uttered by Warren Mayor Jim Fouts, were at the center of an ugly, rapidly developing story at press time.

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Published December 16, 2016

C&G Newspapers

MACOMB COUNTY — Warren Mayor Jim Fouts has asked Michigan’s attorney general to investigate what he has called “illegal dumping” at Freedom Hill County Park in Sterling Heights and how a construction project he said damaged an existing landfill at the site was approved.

In a letter dated Dec. 14, the mayor also asked Attorney General Bill Schuette to look into the relationship between the contractor, Dan’s Excavating, and Macomb County Executive Mark Hackel.

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Published December 14, 2016

TROY — The city’s financials have received a “clean” opinion from independent auditors and awards for financial reporting. 

Troy Financial Services Director Tom Darling presented the city’s audit report to the City Council Dec. 5. 

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Published December 14, 2016

CLAWSON/ROYAL OAK — A new year means new plans, and Clawson residents need to act fast for their input to count when it comes to development in their community.

Clawson residents are invited to voice their opinions by the end of the week on the growth of the community through a short online survey for the city’s master plan. The survey can be found at www.surveymonkey.com/r/Clawson MasterPlan. A link to the survey is provided on the city’s website.

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