Township Board Minutes

DECEMBER 16, 1997

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.


Supervisor Ron Fleckenstein
Clerk Elaine Branch
Trustee Norman Anderson
Trustee Marvin Block
Trustee David Bushouse
Trustee Fred Johnson

ABSENT: Treasurer Lois Brown

Also present was James Porter, Township Attorney and Robert Snell, Township Engineer, along with 3 interested people.

The Pledge of Allegiance was recited.

Motion made by Block, seconded by Johnson to approve the minutes of our last meeting, November 25th, as prepared. Carried.

Income to the General Fund of $16,232.66 and disbursements of $70,964.14 were reported. Fire Fund income was $760.00 with disbursements of $26,442.98. Motion made by Anderson, seconded by Block to approve the report and pay the bills. Carried.




Plans for a new plat, Westport Trails No. 1, was presented by Steve Visser, the developer. The 39 lot plat will be located off the north side of West H Avenue across from Bramble Drive.

In response to a question by Trustee Anderson, Mr. Visser explained that he considered the Open Space development option but decided to continue with the traditional method. He felt people were happy with the previous plats they had developed.

Motion made by Johnson, seconded by Branch to receive the plans and refer them on the our Engineer for review. Carried.


Attorney Porter explained the recommended amendment to our Uniform Traffic Code Ordinance, section 5.97. This change would make our ordinance consistent with the Motor Vehicle Code so that passing a stopped school bus would be a civil infraction rather than a misdemeanor. This action will allow for strong enforcement, something we do not have currently.

Motion made by Block, seconded by Johnson to set the First Reading of the Ordinance Amendment for January 13, 1998. Carried.


A letter was received from Dan Mautte requesting that the Township Board reverse it=s decision to develop a Disc Golf Course in the Oshtemo Township Park. He stated many reasons for objecting to the project, including the following two; it will ruin the wildlife habitat and the park will no longer be a natural setting.

It was suggested that the matter should be referred to Park Committee for their review and recommendation. Motion made by Branch, seconded by Anderson to refer the matter to the Park Committee. Carried.

Trustee Bushouse suggested they should also be sure there is not a problem with Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements.


Supervisor Fleckenstein reported on a proposal to create a Water/Wastewater Commission to replace the current Wastewater Advisory Board. He reviewed the history of that Board, which dated back to 1988, and explained that they have no real power. It was understood that this Board would be a preliminary step toward the formation of a Wastewater Authority.The City of Kalamazoo, who owns the system, has never shown a serious interest in the creation of an Authority.

As a result of recent actions by the City, the Supervisors of the Townships of Kalamazoo County decided to pursue the creation of a Regional Water/Wastewater Commission. The Commission would resemble an Authority, allowing the group to speak with a stronger voice. They established a lengthy list of goals, including the development of a regional 20 year plan.

Attorney Porter explained that there are at least two mechanisms available to authorize the creation of such a Commission; the Intergovernmental Cooperation Act and the Urban Cooperation Act of 1967.

The Supervisor sought Board support of the concept and of the proposed annual membership fee of $1,500. He added that eleven other townships had acted favorably to this proposal.

Motion made by Bushouse, seconded by Johnson to support the concept as submitted. Carried.


As a result of an accident, the insurance company declared the Fire Car No. 504 totaled. The damage was limited to the body but was sizable. The car had been refurbished in 1996 which included, among other things, a new engine and transmission.

The Department could retain the car and receive a payoff of $4,500 from the insurance company. The total cost to repair the vehicle would be $6,400. The request was to expend an additional $1,900 to put the car back on the road. Due to the life remaining on the warranty and the superior style of the car, it was viewed worth the money to repair it.

Motion made by Anderson, seconded by Branch to approve the request to repair Car No. 504 as requested. Carried.


Chief Howe provided a memo explaining his request to replace the air/oxygen cylinder fill station. Due to a number of cylinders that have exploded, causing injury or death, the industry has redesigned the units. The new fill stations are enclosed so that they will contain the fragments of an exploding cylinder.

It was the Chief's recommendation that our unit be replaced with one that will fill three cylinders at a time, rather than just two. Along with being safer, it will be more efficient.

The cost of the new system will be $9,295.00. Breathing Air Systems will install the unit free of charge during their routine maintenance visit in February.

The question was raised about Texas and Alamo Township's participation. They had each paid one third of the cost of the original system. It was explained that this upgrade would benefit and protect our personnel, who operate the fill station and it was felt we should move forward with it.

Motion made by Anderson, seconded by Block to approve the request as presented. Carried.

Trustee Bushouse left at 8:00 p.m.


A list of financial institutions was presented for use in 1998. Treasurer Brown had prepared the list and recommended approval. They included:

Old Kent Bank
First of America - Michigan
Comerica Bank
Standard Federal Bank
Michigan National Bank
Hunting National Bank
Michgian Government Investment Trust

Motion made by Branch, seconded by Anderson to approve the depositories for 1998, as recommended by the Treasurer. Carried.


Supervisor Fleckenstein recommended that we reappoint the following firms for 1998:

Reed, Stover & O'Connor - legal services
Wilkins & Wheaton/Prein & Newhof - engineering services
Siegfried, Crandall, Vos & Lewis - auditor and accounting services.

Clerk Branch concurred, commenting that they have served us well in the past and continue to work on ways to better serve us.

Motion made by Block, seconded by Johnson to approve the appointments as recommended. Carried.


A list of adjustments to the 1997 Budgets was prepared by Clerk Branch. She explained the areas where adjustments were necessary.Motion made by Block, seconded by Anderson to approve the 1997 Budget adjustments. Roll call showed: Block - yes Anderson - yes
Johnson - yes Branch - yes Fleckenstein - yes.


It was recommended that the Township Board continue to meet on the 2nd and 4th Tuesdays of every month, as well as quarterly joint meetings with the Planning Commission and ZBA. A list of dates was provided. Motion made by Anderson, seconded by Block to approve the 1998 meeting dates. Carried.

There was no further business and the meeting adjourned at 8:10 p.m.