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OSHTEMO CHARTER TOWNSHIP

TOWNSHIP BOARD

May 23, 2000


               
                                
The Oshtemo Township Board held its regular meeting at the Township Hall. The meeting was
called to order by Supervisor Fleckenstein, at 7:00 p.m.

PRESENT:
Supervisor Ron Fleckenstein
Clerk Deb Everett
Treasurer Lois Brown
Trustee Norm Anderson			
Trustee Marvin Block
Trustee Dave Bushouse
Trustee Fred Johnson

Also present was Richard Reed, Township Attorney, Bob Snell, Township Engineer and 8
interested people.

Motion made by Brown, seconded by Block to approve the minutes of the May 9th meeting and
the May 16th joint meeting. Carried.

Income to the General Fund of $34,638.90 and disbursements of $81,389.35 were reported. 
Income to the Fire Fund of $50.00 and disbursements of $140,497.81 were reported.  Motion
made by Johnson, seconded by Anderson to acknowledge the receipts and pay the bills.  Carried.
                                
                       CITIZENS COMMENTS
Kadir Mohmand, 6147 Old Log Trail, inquired if there are two zoning ordinances, one for certain
people in the Township Board’s clique and one for minorities and people not in the clique and if
he can prove it will the board resign.  He further commented that he would present a document to
citizens picked from the phone book to hear his and the Supervisor’s positions.  He also
commented that he is concerned about the upcoming election and how absentee ballots have been
used in the past and would be used in the next election.  Supervisor Fleckenstein advised Mr.
Mohmand he would be glad to respond in writing to any document he wished to present.

       AMENDMENT-PARKING VIOLATIONS/UNIFORM TRAFFIC CODE
                          FIRST READING
Supervisor Fleckenstein presented an amendment to the Parking Violations ordinance and
Uniform Traffic Code which would prohibit alteration or misuse of a handicap parking permit.    
Attorney Reed advised this would align the ordinance with state statute. 

Motion made by Block, seconded by Everett to set the amendment for Second Reading for June
13th.  Carried.

                REFORM OF COUNCIL OF GOVERNMENTS
Supervisor Fleckenstein presented a proposal for reform of the Council of Governments (COG)
which includes, a budget funded by $90,000 from the County and a per capita charge based on
census projections for each unit of government participating, dues for Oshtemo Township would
be $$5,492 for the first year based on 2000 census projections with future dues based on census
figures as they become available, the hiring of an executive director with a salary range of
$50,000 to $70,000 , a two year commitment from each municipality, one vote per municipality,
and the option to not participate in a particular project if the municipality does not wish 
to do so.

Trustee Anderson noted he has been on the Council since its inception and is pleased to see some
change in direction because of the time it takes to get projects completed.  

Trustee Bushouse expressed  his concerns that this is another layer of government, if there is a
desire for common services and issues and goals are county wide we are represented by a county
commissioner and the county should be stepping in with plans to move these forward.   He
further commented that individuals are reluctant to give up local control and feels there is not 
any progress for the amount of money being spent.  

Treasurer Brown inquired how the associate membership would be structured, if two years dues
must be paid up front,  do current dues already paid apply toward increased amount, what does
$25,000 budgeted for miscellaneous and overhead cover,  and aren’t we paying twice since taxes
are paid to the County and the Township.  She commented that although the proposal and budget
has been lowered considerably, it still generates questions for her.

Supervisor Fleckenstein advised the associate membership status currently being considered
would be participation in discussions, but no dues and no vote, dues are paid annually but the
agreement asks for two year commitment, dues already paid would apply toward the increased
amount, expenses had been estimated at this point and it could be argued we are paying twice
although COG does not view it that way.    


Mrs. Brown further inquired if the hiring of a director would decrease the time commitment for
local officials.  Mr. Fleckenstein advised he feels it would .

Clerk Everett inquired what level of staffing COG currently has, asked for clarification of the
other groups involved in the same kinds of efforts as COG, if COG anticipates the director being
a permanent position or is there a time frame in which to accomplish their goals they have,
questioned the point in the agreement regarding liability on the governmental units part, and
could the agreement be made for one year rather than two.  Mrs. Everett commented she had
concerns with losing local control.

Supervisor Fleckenstein advised COG currently pays a fee to the Stryker Center at K-College for
use of the facility and secretarial services.  He described the efforts of Southwest Michigan 
First which is privately funded and focuses on economic development and Regional Edge which is
also privately funded and focuses on business and industry as it relates to growth and
development.  He commented that while these groups initially sought input from local
government, their interests don’t always fit with what governmental units see as the best 
interest of their communities, they have however, forged successful relationships with the 
educational institutions.  He advised COG looks at the director as an ongoing position 
assuming funding is in place and feels the two agreement is necessary to attract potential 
candidates for the director’s position.  Attorney Reed advised he feels there is no liability 
to the Township as the agreement is written.

Michael Peat, 9134 Highland View commented that he doesn’t think COG is necessarily a bad
idea, but spending money when he hasn’t seen any result or where there would be much
productivity other than another layer of government and red tape; the first focus should be on
Oshtemo.

Grace Borgfjord, 9802 Sunnywood commented that she  would like to see some type of report in
the newsletter periodically to let citizens know what COG is doing.

Trustee Johnson inquired what other municipalities have approved the proposed reform.  Mr.
Fleckenstein advised the County of Kalamazoo and City of Portage have approved the proposal
and the other municipalities are considering it this week and next. 
 
Motion made by Anderson, seconded by Block to approve the proposed reform to the Council of
Governments.  Roll call vote showed Bushouse-no, Johnson-yes, Block-yes, Anderson-yes,
Brown-no, Everett-no, Fleckenstein-yes.  

                    “LET LOCAL VOTES COUNT” 
Supervisor Fleckenstein presented a resolution requesting our support of a petition drive to 
place on the November ballot a constitutional amendment that would require a 2/3 vote of each
chamber of the Michigan Legislature on any bill that seeks to restrict or preempt the powers 
and authorities of townships, cities, villages, counties and municipal authorities under home 
rule.   

Treasurer Brown commented the more a community doesn’t govern itself the less power they
have over what happens to them and from her point of view likes keeping it local.  

Motion made by Brown, seconded by Everett to adopt the resolution endorsing the “Let Local
Votes Count” ballot initiative.  Roll call vote showed Block-yes, Anderson-yes, Bushouse-yes,
Johnson-yes, Everett-yes, Brown-yes, Fleckenstein-yes.
                                
                     BOARD MEMBER COMMENTS

Trustee Bushouse questioned the payment to Delta Dental shown on the Receipts and
Disbursements Report.  Clerk Everett advised the error had been corrected.

Mr. Bushouse also commented that he had been advised the Ordinance Enforcement Officer had 
ordered two commercial establishments to blow the grass clippings off their parking lots.
Supervisor Fleckenstein advised we have no such ordinance, but he would look into the matter.
                                
                                
There was no further business and the meeting was adjourned at 8:10 p.m.




DEBORAH L. EVERETT                              Attested: RON FLECKENSTEIN
Township Clerk                                            Supervisor