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Police millage up in the air in Springfield



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May 02, 2012 - Voters will head to the polls this August to decide a Springfield Township police millage request, but the amount is still up in the air.

"We will not be able to maintain current level of service with the funds generated by the current millage," said Supervisor Collin Walls, who favored setting it at 0.8-0.9 mill. "One mill is a psychological hurdle I don't think we need to ask taxpayers to take. I believe we should continue to provide service at the current level and slowly work on building reserves."

Clerk Laura Moreau agreed, favoring a 0.6-0.75 mill, while Trustee Dennis Vallad favored 0.95-1 mill.

"There are a lot of assumptions going into revenues and expenditures, any one of which can change direction we've seen it happen," Vallad said. "I'd rather be a little more pessimistic and try to increase the amount we can put away, and build up the fund balance to some extent, but not go overboard."

Treasurer Jamie L. Dubre and trustees Judy Hensler, Roger Lamont, and Roger Lamont favored 1 mill.

A full mill, which would collect $1 for each $1,000 of assessed property valuation, or one-half market value, would shore up the police fund's $431,000 balance. The current balance is enough to fund police services for three months, Dubre said.

"Auditors recommend 6-12 months in reserve," she said.

The township contracts with Oakland County Sheriff's Office for police service, funded by a 0.7163 millage expiring in 2015 and a 1.5 millage expiring 2017.

If successful, the 2012 police millage would collect about $550,000. It would be combined with the 0.7163 millage for a single renewal in 2016.

Also, a 0.75 millage for parks and recreation expires in 2013, and a 1.0 fire department millage runs out in 2016.

They have until May 15 to submit ballot language to Oakland County for the August ballot. The township board meets at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, May 10, at the Civic Center, 12000 Davisburg Road.

Phil is editor for The Clarkston News. He is a veteran of the first Iraq war, having served in the U.S. Army.
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