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Voters OK public safety taxes, give permission to sell properties

November 14, 2012 - Voters in Oxford and Addison were definitely in a very generous mood when they went to the polls for the Nov. 6 election.

In Oxford Township, voters approved a two-year, 1-mill tax increase for police services by a margin of 4,191 to 4,044.

"I'm just proud as hell of everybody that participated in the (pro-millage campaign) and was part of the team we had to get information out to the public," said Oakland County Sheriff's Sgt. Scott Patterson, commander of the Oxford substation.

"I'm proud as hell that the public stepped up in these tough times and recognized the importance of keeping the area safe. It's awesome that people stepped up to do the right thing . . . The key thing is we have the support and the backing of the community to move forward and not backwards."

"I'm never thrilled about the idea of raising taxes, but in this case, we really needed it," said township Supervisor Bill Dunn. "Now, instead of cutting two sheriff's positions, we get to add up to two. I want to thank the voters who said yes."

The levy of this additional millage will begin with the December 2012 township tax bill. Given the average taxable value of a residential property in the township is $96,800, this tax increase will cost the average homeowner an additional $96.80.

The first collection is expected to generate an additional $576,482 for the 2013 police budget.

Over in Addison, a five-year, 0.75-mill fire tax renewal/increase was approved 2,138 to 1,225. The current rate is 0.7473 mill and its set to expire in December 2013.

"I want to deeply thank the residents of Addison Township for their support," said Fire Chief Jerry Morawski. "It will definitely be put to good use protecting and serving our residents."

Morawski wishes he could go to "every single" resident's home in order to thank them in person.

"We really appreciate it," he said.

Oxford Village voters gave their government permission to sell two pieces of municipal-owned property via two ballot proposals.

By a margin of 921 to 675, the village was granted the authority to sell the municipal complex and the 2 acres it sits on located at 18, 20 and 22 W. Burdick St.

The village is also now free to sell a 3.42-acre parcel it owns at 98 S. Glaspie St. That proposal passed 1,069 to 521.

Just because the village has been granted the authority to sell them doesn't mean they must be or will be put on the market.

Council was expected to discuss the election results and what direction to take with these properties at its Nov. 13 meeting.

Township board results

The trustee race in Addison was the only contested township board race affecting Leader readers. All four Republican incumbents won – John Boehmer (2,163), Ed Brakefield (2,011), Linda Gierak (2,082) and John Sutphin (1,981). They beat non-party affiliated trustee candidates Terry Stevens (652) and Sereal Gravlin (436).

Although she didn't face an opponent or even appear on the ballot in Addison, Lori Fisher was elected as the new township treasurer. She ran as a write-in candidate and received 319 votes.

The previous treasurer, Dan Alberty, passed away in late August after winning the Republican primary earlier that month.

As a result, no names appeared on the ballot in the treasurer space.

Addison Supervisor Bruce Pearson was re-elected with 2,640 votes as was Clerk Pauline Bennett with 2,631 votes.

In Oxford Township, the new board will consist of Supervisor Bill Dunn (7,353), Clerk Curtis Wright (7,245), Treasurer Joe Ferrari (7,171), and trustees Sue Bellairs (6,326), Melvin Cryderman (5,987), Jack Curtis (6,240) and Patti Durr (6,006).

Libraries and parks

There were seven candidates for six seats on the Addison Township Library Board of Trustees. Winners were James Baldiga (901), Sandra Craddock (1,082), Jennie Eller (1,088), Mary Frost (1,158), Su Hatfield (834) and Joel King (991). Constance Vaive received 827 votes and was not elected.

The races for the Oxford Library Board of Trustees and Oxford Township Parks and Recreation Commission were uncontested as well.

The library board will consist of Jean Davidson (3,976), Kathleen Hoeflein (3,674), Thomas Offer (3,530), Anthony Rizzo (3,769), Duane Salswedel (3,324) and Sue Stilwell (3,667).

The parks/rec. board will be comprised of Phil Castonia (5,694), Tim Kalohn (5,712), Theresa Myer (5,797), Ronald Roop (5,895) and Jeff Lupu (3,125).

State and county seats

State Rep. Brad Jacobsen (R-Oxford) retained his seat representing the 46th District by defeating Democratic challenger Dan Sargent 27,766 to 15,810.

Mike Spisz (R-Oxford) faced no challenger in the race for District 3 Oakland County Commissioner. He was elected with 21,428 votes.

School Board

The race for the Oxford Community Schools Board of Education featured two candidates for two, four-year seats. Incumbent Carol Mitchell received 5,418 votes and newcomer Dan D'Alessandro garnered 5,347 votes.

Village of Leonard

There were no challengers in the Leonard Village Council races.

Mike McDonald was re-elected as village president with 132 votes, while Judith Verse was returned to the treasurer's position with 125 votes.

Doug Noaker and Charlene Sutherby were re-elected as trustees with 107 and 128 votes, respectively.

CJ Carnacchio is editor for The Oxford Leader. He lives in the Village of Oxford with his wife Connie and daughter Larissa. When he's not busy working on the newspaper, he enjoys cigars/pipes, Martinis/Scotch, hunting and fishing.
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