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May 22, 2001

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

Supervisor John VanDyke
Clerk Deb Everett
Treasurer Nancy Culp
Trustee Norm Anderson
Trustee Lois Brown
Trustee David Bushouse

Also present was Patricia Mason, Township Attorney, Bob Snell, Township Engineer, Mary Lynn Bugge, Planner, and approximately 20 interested people.

Motion by Bushouse, second by Brown to approve the minutes of the May 8th regular, May 15th special and May 15th joint boards meetings. Carried.

Income to the General Fund of $218,413.32 and disbursements of $79,501.10 and income to the Fire Fund of $8,089.05 and disbursements of $21,625.53 were reported.

Motion by Anderson, second by Culp to acknowledge the receipts and pay the bills. Carried.


Mark Meijer, President of Life E.M.S. Ambulance, was present to provide the Board with an update on their operations since their acquisition of Mall City Ambulance. He advised they have increased the number of units in their fleet from 10 to 14 units and now have received all of them. He advised the transition has gone well and provided data on response times.

In response to Board member questions, he advised they would be interested in being part of a consolidated dispatch and perhaps housed there as well and any resident who had an ambulance membership with Mall City will have service through Life for the term of their membership.

Nella Langeland, 7653 West Main, expressed concerns regarding the disc golf areas of the Township Park. She advised she had witnessed a person in the picnic area be hit with a golf disc, had seen evidence of alcohol use and heard foul language in the presence of small children.

Supervisor VanDyke advised the concerns would be referred to the Park Committee.

Steve Ryan, 215 North 8th Street, commented he also had concerns about the disc golf, and as a resident would like to see something more recreational such as tennis courts or basketball hoops. He also commented he felt the speed limit on South 8th Street should be lowered to 45 mph and inquired if water and sewer would be extended on 8th Street at some time. Supervisor VanDyke advised there is pending legislation that would allow townships input regarding speed limits and extension of water and sewer is a financial consideration; there are several projects underway.


Clerk Everett advised the procedure set by the Board on May 1st, was each Board member would submit three names, and then a motion would be made to appoint from the top two. Motion by Culp, second by Anderson to amend the procedure to an actual vote on the top two then a motion to appoint the person receiving the most votes. Carried.

Trustee Brown commented that this was a very difficult task with six very qualified people showing such an interest in serving the Township, and hopes the interest holds over until the next election. She further commented the decision made will affect how the Township grows and the direction both short and long term, and with that in mind did a careful review of each candidate and made a selection based on what she perceived the candidate would bring to the Board with experience, background and knowledge.

First tally of three choices resulted in 4 votes each for Grace Borgfjord, Tom Brodasky, Ted Corakis, and James Worline, 1 vote each for Scott Husted and Steve Visser. Second tally of two choices resulted in 4 votes each for Grace Borgfjord and James Worline and 2 votes each for Tom Brodasky and Ted Corakis. Final tally of one choice resulted in 4 votes for James Worline and 2 votes for Grace Borgfjord.

Motion by Culp, second by Everett to appoint James Worline as Township Trustee. Roll call vote showed Anderson-yes, Brown-yes, Bushouse-yes, Culp-yes, Everett-yes, VanDyke-yes.

Mr. Worline was then sworn in and seated at the dais.


Kalamazoo County Road Commissioners Lara Meeuwse, Reed Youngs and Bill French, along with Managing Director Ron Reid were present to discuss current and future road projects and hear any concerns. Director Reid advised the following schedule for future major primary road projects:

9th Street - M-43 to H Avenue currently under reconstruction

G Avenue - 10th Street to 2nd Street - overlay

KL Avenue @ Drake Road intersection - safety project

11th Street - Stadium Drive to Parkview - on hold - have applied for funds

Board comments and questions including the following:

The Road Commission staff has been very good to work with, especially Lloyd Lambert and Jim Beaudoin.

Trustee Bushouse would still like to see a widening at South 9th Street for left turns into the Credit Union, the ponding that occurs on the northwest corner of South 9th Street and KL Avenue addressed, and when the Holiday Terrace project is done, correct the ponding that occurs at the northeast corner of South 11th Street and Holiday Terrace.

Engineer Snell commented the Road Commission has been very cooperative in the countywide corner markers project.


Planner Mary Lynn Bugge presented the plat of Rosewood for tentative preliminary plat approval. It is a 28 single-family lot plat to be located on the east side of North 9th Street north of Meijers. She advised the Kalamazoo County Road Commission has approved the layout of the roads, the Kalamazoo County Drain Commissioner is ready to review final construction plans, and water and sewer will serve plat. The Planning Commission reviewed the plat at their April 26th meeting and recommends approval of Step 1 subject to legal opinion showing ownership, a letter of recommendation from the Road Commission be on file concerning the public roads, a variance be granted as to the street length of Bela Avenue, Lots 12 and 17 would not be granted setback variances and street lights be installed in conformance with Township requirements.

Motion by Brown, second by Everett to grant Tentative Preliminary Plat approval to Rosewood Plat subject to the conditions recommended by the Planning Commission. Carried.


Ms. Bugge presented a Planning Commission recommendation for rezoning approximately 4.5 acres form R-2 to R-4. The property is located on the north side of Parkview Avenue in the 6000 block and was formerly part of the AT&T right of way. The Master Land Use Plan classifies the property as multi-family residential. The current R-2 zoning is the default zoning for the right-of-way, the balance of the parcel and surrounding parcels is R-4.

Motion by Brown, second by Anderson to set the rezoning for First Reading at the June 12th meeting. Carried.


Ms. Bugge presented a Planning Commission recommendation for correction of an error in a legal description. The property in question has been zoned C to a depth of 200 feet since 1978. In 1999 during an unrelated zoning a part of the public announcement included the total description for the area and inadvertently the commercial portion for the parcel at 8401 was misdescribed. It is necessary to go through the process to correct legal the description of the zoning only because it was not caught at the time the description was published.

Attorney Mason advised looking at how this got changed on the map she felt technically since it really didn't go through a process that if challenged it was not effectively rezoned from commercial, therefore she recommends going through the public hearing process and ordinance adoption to correct the map.

Motion by Everett, second by Culp to set the rezoning and correction of the zoning map for First Reading at the June 12th meeting. Carried.


Building Official Bob Horton advised the Board that effective July 31, 2001, a statewide construction code, the Michigan Building Code, Michigan Residential Code and Michigan Mechanical Code. The State Electrical Code was adopted December 1999. Attorney Mason presented an ordinance establishing the Township will enforce the codes.

Trustee Bushouse inquired if this had been coordinated with other municipalities to save on the cost of printing, publishing, etc. Attorney Mason advised due to the deadline of the State, there was not time to accomplish this. It was noted there would be an update every three years so coordination with other units could be done.

Motion by Bushouse, second by Brown to accept the ordinance to adopt the Michigan Building Code, Michigan Residential Code and Michigan Mechanical Code for First Reading and set Second Reading on June 12th. Roll call showed Brown-yes, Bushouse-yes, Culp-yes, Everett-yes, Worline-yes, Anderson-yes, VanDyke-yes.


Trustee Bushouse presented a recommendation from the Sewer/Water Committee to impose a surcharge on water and sewer usage. The reasons included long range planning in the best interest of the Township to place sewer and water on major roads, and provide a source of revenue for projects and maintenance. The surcharge would be 4% on water usage and 2% on sewer usage beginning July 1, 2001 and subject to review annually in June of each year.

Trustee Brown commented she understood the need to build the funds, however, she had concerns regarding the process of receiving the funds and what the audit trail would be, and felt this information should be available before acting on the proposal.

Trustee Worline inquired what the amount of the surcharge would be on an average household. Engineer Snell advised the surcharge for average residential water use would be $1.85 per quarter and 77 cents per quarter on sewer.

Grace Borgjford, 9802 Sunnywood, inquired if the cost of sewer is higher than water and what the amount of demand for the services is and where would it be expected to go in the future. Trustee Bushouse advised the sewer fund has benefit charges which has added to funds for sewer, therefore, the larger surcharge is recommended for water, the demand seems to be about equal. He felt logic would say to encourage sewer for protection of groundwater.

In response to Mrs. Brown's concerns regarding a collection procedure, Mr. Bushouse felt the Township Auditor could assist in establishing a procedure for collection of the funds.

Motion by Bushouse, second by Culp to adopt the resolution establishing a surcharge on the sewer and water usage, subject to review by the Township Auditor of the procedure to be negotiated by the Township Engineer for collection. Roll call vote showed Bushouse-yes, Culp-yes, Everett-yes, Worline-yes, Anderson-yes, Brown-no, VanDyke-yes.


A proposal from the Sewer/Water Committee was presented for an extension of sewer on KL Avenue east of South 9th Street. The Kalamazoo Center for the Healing Arts development requires sewer and the Township is responsible for bringing sewer to KL Avenue from the interceptor along the railroad tracks, the cost of which is approximately $48,000. Two additional options could be accomplished at the same time; Option 1 would cost approximately $21,500 and extend the line approximately 581 feet east serving the parcel east of the Center for the Healing Arts, and Option 2 would cost approximately $92,000 and extend the line as far east as possible, serving three additional parcels. The Township will collect $26,550 from the Center for Healing Arts for front foot, connection and benefit fees.

Motion by Anderson, second by Culp to approve Option 1. Roll call vote showed Culp-yes, Everett-yes, Bushouse-yes, Anderson-yes, Brown-yes, Worline-yes, VanDyke-yes.


Membership dues for 2001 in the amount of $10,996.00 for the Kalamazoo Regional Water & Wastewater Commission were presented for payment.

Engineer Snell commented this organization was by Supervisors in the County that have contracts with the City of Kalamazoo for sewer and water. Contracts are beginning to expire and will have to be renegoiated and while the City has been cooperative in extending service, as the contracts expire the commission will attempt to negoiate uniform contracts. He advised he felt it is important for the Township to stay involved.

Motion by Bushouse, second by Everett to approve payment of the dues. Carried.


Attorney Mason advised Planning Director Jodi Stefforia had requested she advise the Board a petition can be filed by residents with 100 feet of the cemetery property that the City of Kalamazoo is considering for rezoning to high density. If 20% of those residents sign the petition, a two-thirds vote of the City Commission would be required to approve the rezoning.

Ms. Stefforia would inform the area residents and make it available to them for circulation.

Trustee Bushouse noted that the Township was cooperative in approving a PA 425 to aid the City of Kalamazoo with development of the Western Michigan University Research Park and he would hope they would be helpful to the Township in keeping the residential area that is already established near the area they are considering for rezoning.

Motion by Brown, second by Worline to authorize the Township Attorney to prepare the petition. Carried.


Clerk Everett advised that Trustee Worline would be assuming the open positions on the Personnel and Board Appointment Committees. These were originally filled by motion along with the Township Board representative appointments to the Planning Commission and ZBA.

Motion by Everett, second by Anderson to appoint Trustee Worline to the Personnel and Board Appointment Committees. Carried.


Treasurer Brown commented that she understood Supervisor VanDyke had a meeting with the Assessor and would like a clarification on the information that came out of the meeting. Mr. VanDyke advised it was a very productive meeting, Assessor Hudson reviewed the information on the properties that were requested to be reviewed and it appeared to Mr. VanDyke to be accurate. Mrs. Brown inquired if those properties were hers, Marv Block's and Fred Johnson's, and is the matter closed. Mr. VanDyke advised as far as he is concerned it is. Attorney Mason inquired if Mr. VanDyke concluded from what he understood that the properties were properly assessed. Mr. VanDyke indicated he believes they are as the Assessor presented it. Mrs. Brown then inquired if there has been a request to assess one of the properties out of context with the rest of the assessment program in place, and would it be done if requested. Mr. VanDyke advised not to his knowledge and didn't know if it could be if legally. Mrs. Brown reiterated her point that she understood the Assessor is systematically reappraising the whole Township and the request was made that her property, out of context with all the homes in her neighborhood, be reassessed now. Mr. VanDyke commented that was the request Kadir Mohmand had made. Mrs. Brown asked if that request was being honored. Mr. VanDyke responded Mr. Mohmand's request also included Mr. Block and Mr. Johnson. Mrs. Brown inquired if the letter to Mr. Mohmand, which she had received a copy of, has closed the situation and those properties will stay in the loop for reappraisal with everyone else. Mr. VanDyke once again advised the assessments appear correct to him. Mr. VanDyke advised he spent more than two hours with Assessor Hudson and received an explanation of the process and it looked correct to him. Mrs. Brown commented she was glad Mr. VanDyke appears to understand the process now but thought it could have been handled had he understood the process before it became a part of this public meeting. Mr. VanDyke commented he did not bring the matter up, Mr. Mohmand had. Mrs. Brown commented she understood that but wants this public body to know that none of those properties have done anything improper or were appraised improperly. Mr. VanDyke once again commented he did not see anything wrong after going through it with the Assessor. Mrs. Brown requested that this conversation be included in the minutes.


Trustee Worline thanked the Board for the opportunity to serve the Township, commenting he is looking forward to working with the Board, realizes he has a learning curve but feels he is a quick learner, a team player and progressive.


Clerk Everett advised that this is EMS Week, noting that our Fire Department should be commended for their role in that area and also advised that Fire Chief Ken Howe was honored as Instructor of the Year and received the First Annual Ron Haner Memorial Award for Training. This award is in recognition of the training initiatives Chief Howe has conducted throughout the County.

There was no further business and the meeting was adjourned at approximately 9:50 p.m.

Township Clerk

Attested: John VanDyke