Roseville and Eastpointe residents cast votes in school district elections

By: Brendan Losinski | Roseville - Eastpointe Eastsider | Published November 6, 2018

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EASTPOINTE/ROSEVILLE — Voters in Roseville and Eastpointe cast their ballots in the Nov. 6 election for school board members in each community, and Roseville residents also decided to renew a non-homestead operating millage in their district.

In Roseville, four candidates ran for three six-year terms on the Roseville Community Schools Board of Education. Incumbents Theresa Genest and Ruth Green were re-elected to the board with 7,042 and 7,035 votes respectively. They will be joined by newcomer Michael J. Anderson, who received 5,605 votes. Anderson will replace incumbent Gregory W. Scott, who finished fourth with 5,523 votes.

Anderson is excited to join the board, and he will be sworn in in early January. He is looking forward to taking a role in improving the school district.

“After graduating college, I wanted to do more,” said Anderson. “After finishing school, I ended up in a retail job, and from there, I started getting involved in the community, and rather than just complaining, I wanted to do something and be part of improving things.”

Anderson added that he brings a new, youthful perspective to the board and said his first priority will be getting a better understanding of what those in the district are thinking and feeling.

“The biggest thing, I think, is my age. I’m only 24 right now. I think the board needs that more youthful vibe to infuse into the board,” he said. “The first thing I’m going to do is check out every school in the district, see how the students feel, how the administration feels, how the teachers feel, and talk to some of the parents. From there, I want to get an idea of what the most important and pressing things are to the district at this moment. … I also want to send a full questionnaire to the parents, staff and students and have them rank certain issues and how they would like to address those issues.”

Roseville voters renewed the non-homestead operating millage to help fund the Roseville Community Schools. It passed by a margin of 9,649 votes, or 65.8 percent, to 5,011 votes, or 34.2 percent.

The measure will not be a tax increase but a renewal of the millage that was previously passed in 1999. Roseville Community Schools Superintendent John Kment said in September that this renewal will not affect the majority of residents, only businesses and homeowners who own more than one house. 

“The Roseville students are the winners out of this. We are able to continue our programs because of it,” said Kment. “We thank the citizens of Roseville for supporting the renewal and supporting our students.”

Kment said the renewal not passing would have been devastating to the district.

“It would have been about a third of our total budget, so we would have been pretty much out of business if this didn’t pass. At the very least, it would have meant very deep cuts,” Kment added. “But it passed, so it’s a good night for us.”

Kment said that the money from this millage accounts for $7.3 million of the district’s general fund budget annually. He said a non-homestead millage is in place in every district in Michigan, and several local districts have recently had to renew their millages, including the Eastpointe, Mount Clemens and Almont school districts.

The renewal will allow Roseville Community Schools to continue to levy mills previously authorized and levied for general operating purposes on non-homestead property at the statutory rate of 18 mills. It will now be extended for another 20 years and will expire in 2038.

On the Eastpointe Community Schools Board of Education, incumbent Julie Ann DeVita received 9,027 votes and fellow incumbent Chineva Early received 6,399 votes. The pair ran unopposed for three seats. Upon official confirmation by election officials, they will be joined by write-in candidate Keith Ward. They were each elected to four-year terms.

Eastpointe voters also got to decide who would complete two partial terms on the school board. Edward Williams ran unopposed for one of the seats and received 10,112 votes. Upon official confirmation by election officials, he will be joined by write-in candidate Robert D. Roscoe. Both terms will end Dec. 31, 2020.