NEWSLETTER. July Welcoming Public Works Assistant Jamie Baker. Weekday Summer Lunch Program. Shredding Day! est. 1839

Save this PDF as:

Size: px
Start display at page:

Download "NEWSLETTER. July Welcoming Public Works Assistant Jamie Baker. Weekday Summer Lunch Program. Shredding Day! est. 1839"


1 Oshtemo Township Board of Trustees Supervisor Libby Heiny-Cogswell Clerk Dusty Farmer Treasurer Nancy Culp Trustees Dave Bushouse Deb Everett Zak Ford Ken Hudok Dump Day Schedule Township Hall Parking Lot 7275 W. Main St. 9am-3pm July 29, Aug. 26, Sept. 30, Oct. 28, Nov. 18 Fall Leaf Drop Off Days Nov. 4th & 18th Proof of residency required. Yard waste, kitchen garbage, dead animals, hazardous materials, or large quantities of building materials cannot be accepted. Shredding Day! Oct 14-10am-Noon Township Hall Parking Lot Free to Township residents. Proof of residency required. Maximum 10 banker boxes. est To advance the quality of life of all residents through a commitment to responsible growth, and value-driven municipal services that promote the relationships among economic vitality, environmental stewardship, and social equity. (Adopted 2/14/2017) NEWSLETTER Township Department Information Assessor: Kristine Biddle Fire Chief: Mark Barnes Ordinance Enf: Rick Suwarsky Parks Director: Karen High Rental Info Planning Director: Julie Johnston Public Works: Marc Elliott July 2017 Township Office Hours Monday thru Thursday 8 am to 5 pm Friday 8 am to 1 pm (1st Thurs each month open at 9 am) We will be CLOSED July 3 & 4 Independence Day September 4 Labor Day First Budget Work Session August 21 Welcoming Public Works Assistant Jamie Baker Jamie Baker started working in the Public Works Department in February He grew up in Haslett, MI and graduated from Michigan State University with a BS Physics degree. Upon graduation from MSU, he was commissioned in the US Navy. He taught Principles of Nuclear Power to enlisted Sailors at the Naval Nuclear Power Training Command in Charleston, SC for four years. Then he transferred to Naval Reactors Headquarters in Washington, DC for the next 14 years where he designed systems and components for the nuclear reactor plants on submarines and aircraft carriers (4 years), and was responsible for the Navy s three nuclear power schools including the 5,000 students, 2,000 staff, and 4 training nuclear reactors (10 years). For the Oshtemo Public Works Department, Jamie is responsible for managing utility service connections for water and sewer services, and for responding to inquiries regarding these services, as well as general questions on roads and drainage. Jamie is expanding his role in the planned expansion of non-motorized facilities in Oshtemo, and serves on the Technical Committee of the Kalamazoo Area Transportation Study. Jamie is also coordinating with Engineering Consultants hired by the Township to assist in seeking a $25.5M USDA Rural Development Loan to extend public sewers into older subdivisions with failing septic systems. In short, Jamie is expected to have a hand in many future infrastructure projects in the Township. Weekday Summer Lunch Program Woodland Estates is hosting a summer food service program run by the Michigan Department of Education. The program will run from Monday, June 26th to Friday, August 18th, but will be closed the week of July 3rd-7th. Lunches will be served from 11am to noon. Any child under age 18 is invited to come to the Woodland Estates Community Center for lunch this summer. There are no income requirements nor do students have to fill out any paper work. Location: Woodland Estates Community Building 4797 S. 4th St. Dates: June 26th August 18th Time: 11am Noon

2 MDOT: Road Construction M-43 (West Main St.) is under construction until November. The 4.7 miles from US-131 to Pitcher Street in Kalamazoo will be repaved, with both the east and westbound lanes down to one lane. You can sign up for MDOT Southwest Region Traffic Notifications through, and click on Sign up for from MDOT. By clicking on that, you can also sign up for text message alerts. Road Commission of Kalamazoo County Construction The project area on Stadium Drive is from 9 th Street to US-131. This project includes traffic signal upgrades at the Stadium Drive intersections within the corridor, intersection sidewalk ramp upgrades, some curb replacement and the addition of northbound and westbound turn lanes at 11 th Street. There is no detour during construction for this project. The traffic lanes and shoulders may be closed intermittently throughout the duration. The traffic light will be shut down at times, during that time stop signs will be posted in all directions. There may be times when left turns from Stadium could be prohibited. The projected end date is estimated at late August. SOUTHWEST MICHIGAN BUILDING AUTHORITY Thinking of doing a small project around your house this summer and unsure if you need a permit? If you are adding a deck, pool, or shed to your property, or if you are replacing your roof, the answer is YES. Permit applications are available on-line at or in the office. For more information or questions you may have, contact SMBA at or stop in the office located at 7275 W. Main St. Hold on There s still time to get help paying your bills! Call Today! Sorry, NO walk-ins. By Appointment only. Kalamazoo County Community Action Agency may be able to help you to pay your Consumers Energy Bill. Assistance is provided based on income qualifications and funding availability. Community Action Agency 3299 Gull Road, Nazareth complex/kalamazoo, MI Phone (269) / Fax (269) Kalamazoo County Health & Community Services Department. The HCS Programs are open to all without regard to race, sex, color, national origin, height, weight, marital status, political affiliation, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability. BLOOD DRIVE NEWS Wednesday, August 30th 11 am 5 pm Appointments can be made with Michigan Blood by phone MIBLOOD or

3 From Supervisor Libby Heiny-Cogswell: Michigan Supreme Court Ruling on Oshtemo Authority The Oshtemo Township Board members and staff are perplexed about the recent Supreme Court ruling. The fundamental question the Township asked in the case was whether ITC/METC/powerline companies are required to get consent from the Township before constructing electric transmission lines. The Michigan Constitution Article 7 Section 29 states no public utility may use the public street without consent of the Township. After seven months of deliberation, the Michigan Supreme Court ignored the constitutional question. The Supreme Court issued an order May 12th finding Township Ordinance No. 525 unreasonable. The specific requirement to place powerlines underground within 250 feet of the road right of way struck down. This ruling ignores the real issue whether Township consent is required. Needless to say, this is disappointing. And disappointing not only to Oshtemo, but cities and township whose organizations-- the Michigan Municipal League and Michigan Townships Association-- partnered with Oshtemo in this potentially landmark case. All forms of local government seek clarity on the issue. Perhaps the justices felt that to answer in the affirmative would put powerline companies at odds with local municipalities. So the question was ignored, and the decision allows powerline companies to do what they want. In our case, the Michigan Electric Transmission Company LLC (METC) and the certificate granted by the Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC), stand. The Oshtemo ordinance requirement to place the powerlines underground does not stand. But there is no direction on whether a requirement of 200 would be reasonable, or whether 100 would be reasonable. Townships and Cities remain in limbo. To view the Supreme Court Order (one page), visit the Township website at on the Notice Board. From Treasurer Nancy Culp: 2017 Summer Tax Information Summer tax notices were mailed at the end of June. If you receive a tax bill but have an escrow with your mortgage company, you will need to call your mortgage company and remind them they must request the bill each taxing season; you should forward the tax bill to them. If your mortgage company has requested the tax bill, you will not receive a copy, but may contact us and we will be glad to send you a copy. You can verify taxes have been paid at We accept credit cards at the counter and online, with a 3% service fee. You are welcome to use the drop box in the parking lot to submit payment. Summer taxes are due September 14. After the due date, 1% will be added, and 1% each month thereafter. Please call Treasurer Nancy Culp at with any questions. From Clerk Dusty Farmer: Solicitors must have a license With few exceptions, anyone conducting door-to-door business is required to register with the Township Office. Our Hawkers, Peddlers & Solicitors Ordinance also requires that No Trespassing signs be obeyed or be subject to an ordinance violation ticket. Ask the solicitor if they have registered with the Township, and they should have a license in their possession. To report soliciting without a license, please contact Clerk Dusty Farmer at or Ordinance Enforcement Officer Rick Suwarsky at If you have concerns of suspicious activity, contact the Kalamazoo County Sheriff s Dept. at , ext 6. Election Inspectors Needed If you have a passion for democracy and would like to actively participate in ensuring that our elections run smoothly, please fill out an application to become an election inspector. For more information, please call or

4 Movies in the Park Free outdoor movies will be shown near the picnic shelter at Township Park this summer, located behind the Township Hall at 7275 West Main Street. The program is provided through a continuing partnership between the Oshtemo Friends of the Parks and the Oshtemo Branch of the Kalamazoo Public Library. All movies will begin at dusk. Bring a lawn chair or blanket; free popcorn is provided by Kalamazoo 10. This year s movie schedule includes: Thursday, July 20 th Zootopia Thursday, August 17 th Mr. Smith Goes to Washington Music in the Park Don t miss our free outdoor concerts this summer! The family friendly performances will be held at the gazebo in Flesher Field, 3664 South 9 th Street. Bands include: Sunday, July 9 th Red Sea Pedestrians Sunday, August 13 th Out of Favor Boys Get creative and make a musical instrument before the concert! A hands-on art project will be offered before each concert, starting at 5:00 pm. Music will begin at 5:30 pm. Picnicking is encouraged, and local restaurants will offer food for sale. Alcohol is prohibited. In case of inclement weather, concerts will be held at Voyage Church, 6339 Atlantic Avenue. This program is supported by the Michigan Council for the Arts and Cultural Affairs Minigrant Program, administered by the Arts Council of Greater Kalamazoo, and the generous support of local businesses and organizations, including Mangia Pizza and Pasta Company, Oshtemo Rotary Club, Oshtemo Downtown Development Authority, Kalamazoo Landscape Supply, Secant Technologies, Kalamazoo Public Library, Siegfried Crandall, and Mingle. Tennis Lessons return to Township Park Tennis lessons for youths and adults will be offered again this year at Township Park, located behind Township Hall at 7275 West Main Street, Kalamazoo. The lessons are taught by certified tennis professional Warner Offord of Let s Serve Tennis Club. Sessions, times and fees are listed on the Oshtemo Township website at Yoga in the Park at Flesher Field Please join us at the Flesher Field gazebo for outdoor yoga! Classes are from 5:30 to 6:30 pm each Wednesday, from June 14 to August 30 th. Cost is $10 per class. No registration or advance sign up is required and all levels are welcome. Please bring a yoga mat or blanket and water. Classes will be taught by Gena Pezzoli, registered yoga teacher. Questions? Contact Gena at

5 Oshtemo Township Master Plan Update The Planning Department is continuing the work on the Master Plan Update. The Rural Character Preservation Strategy is available on the website at on the Planning Department s webpage. An important step in finalizing the document will be to prioritize the strategies outlined within to help staff move towards implementation. To that end, we have developed a SURVEY for residents to prioritize the strategies. The survey can be found at r/oshtemoruralcharacter Please take a moment to log on and provide your input. The 1 st DRAFT of the Maple Hill Sub-Area Plan will be posted to the Township s website by July 20 th and presented to the Planning Commission on July 27 th. We invite all concerned residents to attend the meeting and provide input on the draft document. The Planning Commission is also working on updates to the Future Land Use Map and Goals and Objectives of the Master Plan. We intend to hold a public Open House on Tuesday, August 1 st from 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm to allow residents to weigh in on possible Future Land Use Map changes. Drop by any time to review the possible changes, recommend other updates, discuss ideas with Planning staff and learn more about the Master Plan Update. This will be an important community meeting as the Future Land Use Map guides zoning and development for the Township As the Update proceeds, more information will be made available regarding community events and opportunities for you to get involved. Please check the Township website at and click on the Planning Department link over the coming months for more information. If you would like to get information sent to you directly, consider sending your to Julie Johnston, Planning Director at to be placed on the Master Plan contacts list. We look forward to working with the community to continue to protect and improve Oshtemo Township! Oshtemo Twp & Texas Twp Tire Drop Off Day Saturday, August 19th 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m South 6 th Street Just south of O Avenue East side of the road All tires up to semi tires $3.00 each / $5.00 each with rim All semi Tires $10.00 each / $12.00 each with rim No tractor tires will be accepted No over size tires loader, tractor etc. will be accepted Proof of Oshtemo residency required

6 OSHTEMO HISTORICAL SOCIETY NEWS As you make your plans for this summer, we have three dates we would like you to put on your calendar. Our programs are free and open to the public. They are held at the Oshtemo Township Hall, 7275 W. Main St, unless otherwise specified, and begin at 7:00 p.m. Thursday, July 20 th - Lost on the Lakes: Shipwrecks of Southwest Michigan, will be presented by Robert Myers, the Assistant Director for Educational Programs and Events for the Historical Society of Michigan. Saturday, Aug. 19 th - Open House at the Drake Farmstead from 2-4 PM. The Victorian home is located at 927 N. Drake Rd. That same day, we will have a booth at Oshtemo Fun Day, held at Flesher Field. Sunday, Sept. 24 th - The Drake Farmstead will again be open for Tours. For more information, please visit our website, later this summer. For more information about the Oshtemo Historical Society, please visit our website at West Main Street Kalamazoo, MI Ph Fax