April 27, 2004

The Oshtemo Township Board held its work session at the Township Hall. The meeting was called to order at 5:00 p.m.

Supervisor John VanDyke
Clerk Deb Everett
Treasurer Nancy Culp
Trustee Lois Brown
Trustee Dave Bushouse
Trustee Ted Corakis
Trustee Stan Rakowski

Also present were James Porter, Township Attorney, Bob Snell and Marc Elliott, Township Engineers, Planning Director Jodi Stefforia, and Planner Mary Lynn Bugge.

The following recommendations from the Sewer/Water Committee were presented:

Agreement With Meijer - Sewer/Water Extension and Pump Station

The committee recommends approval of an agreement with Meijer addressing public sewer to serve the outlots on West Main and future sewer extension east to the West Port Plat was presented to the Board. In addition to new sewer mains, the final project design proposes an area wide pump station to be located on the Meijer property which will allow for future abandonment of the 9th Street pump station and allow a system that would serve an area of more than 500 acres. It was noted if the project as proposed did not go forward Meijer would be required to upgrade their existing private pump station to public standards to provide service to the outlots; Meijer will contribute $83,600 toward the project and grant the necessary easements. It was noted easements from other property owners were being negotiated and agreements expected to be reached.

Motion by Corakis, second by Culp to approve the agreement with Meijer. Carried.

Ordinance Amendments Regarding Dry Sewer

The committee recommended the adoption of amendments to the Zoning, Land Division, and Wastewater Service ordinances requiring installation of dry sewer in new developments and language that would require existing sites to connect to available utilities when redevelopment occurs.

There was discussion regarding the current requirement of hook up within a 5 year period when utilities become available.

Motion by Bushouse, second by Brown to direct the Planning Department to draft the ordinance language and consult with the Township Engineer and Attorney regarding reasonableness of requiring dry sewer.

Public Water in H Avenue- 9th Street to 6th Street

The committee recommends installation of water main in H Avenue from 9th Street to 6th Street then south on 6th Street to the future site of the City of Kalamazoo water tower which they plan to have in service in 2005. It was noted if the City installs the main the Township would be required to payback a percentage of front foot assessments as properties connect; if the Township funds the project, all front foot assessments would be retained and returned to the water fund with no obligation to the City. The total cost of the project is approximately $233,000.

Motion by Bushouse, second by Corakis to approve the project contract with the City of Kalamazoo to install the water main and 10 fire hydrants subject to the Township Engineer consulting in the design process. Carried.

Sewer Resolution Revisions

The committee identified areas of the sewer resolution needing clarification. They address number of properties allowed to be connected to a single public sanitary sewer lead, providing for Township Board approval to allow observation of sewer construction by the developers engineer of record if the Township Engineer is either unable or unavailable to observe the construction or the Township Board determines it is in the Township's best interest to have observation services performed by a named other party, and requiring a preconstruction meeting with Township representative, Township Engineer and affected utility.

Motion by Culp, second by Corakis to accept the recommendation of the committee and revise the Sewer Resolution language. Carried.

Other Business

Drake Homestead

Trustee Bushouse advised after negotiation regarding the acquisition of the property necessary to retain the original driveway for the Drake Homestead, the Dinnerstein Companies has proposed a sale price of $65,000 to include 5.36 acres of property, the home and carriage house. The Board approved a purchase price of $50,000 for four acres and the buildings on June 10, 2003. He recommended any language referencing a drainage easement agreement be removed from the sales agreement and could dealt with at a later date. Mr. Bushouse noted the purchase agreement will state a purchase price of $130,000 acknowledging a $65,000 contribution by Dinnerstein Companies and payment of $65,000 by the Township, and a plaque placed on the property recognizing Dinnerstein Companies contribution.

Motion by Bushouse, second by Corakis to make a purchase offer of $65,000 for 5.63 acres, the home and carriage house and remove language from the sales agreement regarding a drainage easement. Carried.

Purchase of Mailing Machine

Treasurer Culp presented a request to purchase a mailing machine to perform the functions of folding, inserting and sealing. She advised this would be used for processing tax notices, assessment notices, the Planning Department for their mailings done twice or three times per month, and other Township mailings. She further advised the cost would be $7,915.00.

Motion by Brown, second by Rakowski to approve the purchase. Carried.

Meeting was adjourned at approximately 6:00 p.m.

Supervisor VanDyke called the regular meeting to order at 7:00 p.m.

Supervisor John VanDyke
Clerk Deb Everett
Treasurer Nancy Culp
Trustee Lois Brown
Trustee Dave Bushouse
Trustee Ted Corakis
Trustee Stan Rakowski

Also present were James Porter, Township Attorney, Bob Snell and Marc Elliott, Township Engineers, Planning Director Jodi Stefforia, Planner Mary Lynn Bugge and approximately 30 interested people.

Motion by Brown, second by Corakis to approve the minutes of the April 13th Regular and April 15th Special meetings. Carried.

Income to the General and Fire Funds of $28,193.96 and disbursements of $136,710.78 were reported.

Motion by Rakowski, second by Culp to accept the receipts and disbursements report. Carried.




Special Environmental Counsel Mike Ortega appeared before the Board to request direction concerning the KL Landfill and the current dispute resolution proceedings. He advised there would be a 10 day window to pursue further appeal if the Township and KLA Group do not prevail.

Motion by Brown, second by Corakis to authorize Special Environmental Counsel Mike Ortega to pursue an appeal to the Federal Court in Kalamazoo in the event the Township and KLA Group do not prevail in the current formal dispute resolution process at USEPA. Roll call showed Brown-yes, Bushouse-yes, Corakis-yes, Culp-yes, Everett-yes, Rakowski-yes, VanDyke-yes.


A public hearing was held concerning the adoption of the Downtown Development Authority (DDA) Plan.

DDA Board of Directors Chairman Tom Brodasky commented the Board felt the plan would be an instrument to achieve goals of improving sites in the area, pedestrian access, attract both residential and commercial development and urged the Board to allow the DDA to fulfill its mission.

Jay Kilpatrick of Williams & Works, consultant to the DDA Board gave an overview of the plan which they feel will promote economic development, establish the village area as a focal point, and foster a sense of community. He commented the plan has been drafted so as to be flexible with phases addressing specific goals and there was a short time frame involved in order to set the 2003 assessed values as the base for the district.

Mr. Kilpatrick explained the tax increment financing authority of the plan of establishing a base value with the 2003 assessed values after which any tax revenue generated by the increase in the values is captured for use in the DDA district.

Eugene Keck, 3420 South 9th Street, questioned why his property was indicated on the map as vacant, inquired how many members of the DDA Board live or own property in the area, commented on light pollution he receives on his property and felt the Board should spend more time looking into the plan.

It was noted the map indicated Mr. Keck's property could be developed without a land division being necessary, that all but one DDA Board of Directors members either live or own property in the DDA district, all members of the Citizens Advisory Council (CAC) are residents of the district and any resident is welcome to apply for either board.

Terry Schley, 1266 Wickford, advised his business is located in the district; he had been a vocal opponent of the DDA boundary but now appears as Vice-Chair of the DDA Board in support of the plan. He commented there are many checks and balances for the citizens of the DDA and the Township Board, the DDA Board considered the map as only an example of what could happen, the plan is about broad issues and ideas and he sees the plan as flexible with a great deal of community input.

Wade Adams, 744 Garland Circle, commented Oshtemo has changed considerably over the last 30 years, likes to see respect of history, would oppose the plan, is concerned about citizens who live there, how will people pay their taxes, development requires services, and people on the DDA Board own property but don't live there have a conflict of interest and do not have to live with the consequences. Mr. Adams also inquired about the plan provision regarding eminent domain commenting that some people do not want change, want to maintain their property without being driven away by taxes, and inquired as to the definition of historical preservation.

It was noted while language in the plan provides for eminent domain; the document states "This plan does not contemplate any actions that would result in the displacement of any residents of the development area. On the contrary the plan seeks to encourage new development in the area including additional residential development."

Jean Gagliardo, 2949 Danford Creek, member of the DDA Board, commented she was originally skeptical but attended the meetings and became part of the process and is in favor of the plan. She further commented that while the captured tax revenue can be used to improve the district it will benefit the entire Township, and sees the plan as a chance to make improvements.

Sandra Adams, 744 Garland Circle, commented she had a problem with the language concerning taking of private property and suggested it be removed for the residents' peace of mind. Attorney Porter advised the Board cannot change the language of State Law. It was noted the process requires a public need which a court determines.

Jay Brown, 3667 South 9th Street, commented he is a 45 year resident of the Township, feels the DDA can be valuable to the area but would like to see the language removed from the plan which allows for levy of a millage. Attorney Porter advised this language is also part of State Law, and the DDA Board would have to initiate the request; the Township Board could not levy a millage of their own volition.

Trustee Bushouse commented the concept of a DDA began as a means to renew the village concept, he is not in favor of an additional tax but the best interest of the community is served would best be serviced by keeping all options available should a need be shown that the community would support.

Ruth Verhey, 7990 South 10th Street, inquired as to specifics of the plan, and felt the process was being done in a hurry.

Trustee Rakowski commented the plan has to have a beginning and the DDA will have citizen input. Planner Bugge reiterated some of the items on the DDA list of projects included a traffic and pedestrian study and theme study.

Trustee Brown commented the Township had recently opened the new community center using the village area concept in the design.

Bob Janssen, 8670 Almena Drive, commented the Township had experienced problems in getting police protection and problems of the community need to be addressed.

Terry Schley commented the DDA has the right through State Law to levy millage, that point was debated and voted on by the DDA Board with the majority voting to keep the language in the plan recognizing any proposed millage would be debated by the CAC and the DDA Board and would require approval of the Township Board. He further commented regarding the lack of specifics the DDA Board understood there would be no specifics at this time due to the short time frame getting the plan to the State for approval but includes items of general interest to the CAC and DDA Board.

Dana Slocum, owner of 2970 South 9th Street and DDA Board member commented the plan was drafted to have flexibility, provides for checks and balances and the Board would welcome input.

Motion by Bushouse, second by Rakowski to accept the Downtown Development Plan as presented for First Reading and set Second Reading for May 4th. Roll call showed Corakis-yes, Culp-yes, Everett-yes, Rakowski-yes, VanDyke-yes, Brown-yes, Bushouse-yes.


The by-laws adopted by the DDA Board of Directors and reviewed by the Township Attorney were presented to the Board.

Motion by Corakis, second by Rakowski to approve the by-laws of the Downtown Development Authority as presented. Roll call showed Bushouse-yes, Corakis-yes, Culp-yes, Everett-yes, Rakowski-yes, VanDyke-yes, Brown-yes.


Trustee Bushouse presented the recommendation from the Road Committee for 2004 projects:

Road Committee member Trustee Corakis noted the committee recommends an additional $3,003 be added to the road budget keeping in mind projects usually come in under bid.

Trustee Brown inquired if Texas Township had been consulted regarding their portion of South 1st Street to complete the project to Stadium Drive. Mr. Bushouse advised they had not but the committee would do so.

Motion by Corakis, second by Rakowski to approve the 2004 road projects and consult with Texas Township of their portion of South 1st Street. Carried.


Trustee Corakis advised the item concerned property owned by his son and requested he be excused from voting. Motion by Brown, second by Everett to excuse Trustee Corakis from voting on the item. Carried.

A Planning Commission recommendation to rezone three parcels located on Stadium Drive from RR Rural Residential to I-1 Industrial was before the Board for First Reading. The original request had been expanded to include two additional properties and the Planning Commission did not hear any objection to at their public hearing; with one property owner requesting clarification on the tax implications from the proposed rezoning.

Motion by Culp, second by Everett to accept the Planning Commission recommendation and set Second Reading for May 11th. Carried.


Attorney Porter advised the agreement drafted at the direction of the Township Board at their March 24th Special Meeting had been prepared concerning the terms of the contract with Life EMS in which all emergency medical calls are forwarded to Life EMS by Kalamazoo County 911 dispatch. He advised Life EMS had requested some changes he felt were reasonable, was satisfied the Township and Kalamazoo County are indemnified, and could recommend the Board approve the agreement.

In response to questions from Trustee Bushouse, Deputy Chief Karnemaat advised the Fire Department does not have input regarding what calls they are dispatched to, the procedure is determined by Kalamazoo County Medical Control.

Trustee Corakis commented he felt time will be lost if a resident calls 911 and asks for another ambulance service.

Motion by Culp second by Brown to approve the indemnification agreement. Carried with Bushouse and Corakis voting no.


The NFPA 1/Uniform Fire Code 2003 for maintenance of existing buildings was before the Board for Second Reading.

Attorney Porter advised the Fire Department is recommending the Board adopt the NFPA 1/Uniform Fire Code 2003 as a maintenance code. He commented the proposed fire code recognizes the 2000 State Construction Code preempts all other ordinances concerning buildings constructed under the 2000 State Construction Code.

Motion by Corakis, second by Rakowski to adopt the NFPA 1/Uniform Fire Code 2003 as presented. Roll call showed Culp-yes, Everett-yes, Rakowski-yes, VanDyke-yes, Brown-yes, Bushouse-yes, Corakis-yes.


Trustee Rakowski commented that Kalamazoo County would be changing their radio system and inquired of Deputy Chief Karnemaat how it will affect the Fire Department. Deputy Chief Karnemaat advised with a "crosspatch" ability, there would be no effect.

There was no further business and the meeting was adjourned at approximately 8:55 p.m.

Township Clerk

Attested: John VanDyke