July 25, 2012 - Fracking key issue
By now hopefully most of Independence Township residents are aware that the Jordan Development Company, a gas/oil exploration company, has purchased the mineral rights to over 14,000 acres in Oakland County for the purpose of Horizontal Hydraulic Fracturing, Fracking, for methane gas.
I have been involved with the Committee to Ban Fracking in Michigan, a petition drive to amend the Michigan State Constitution to ban the practice of Horizontal Hydraulic Fracturing in Michigan. The deadline of July 9, 2012, for the petition signature requirement has been extended four months and will be placed on the November 2014 ballot if enough signatures have been attained. This will allow the registered voters of Michigan to decide if a ban on fracking should be included in our state constitution.
This November 2012, citizens will go the polls to cast their vote for various candidates campaigning for office. Commissioner Tom Middleton, who is my Fourth District commissioner for Oakland County, voted "no" on a moratorium introduced a month ago to stop hydraulic fracking in Oakland County, a moratorium to conduct studies about the harmful effects that fracking will do to our drinking water, lakes, and streams. Commissioner Middleton belongs to several conservation groups and is lake board member of one of the very lakes that is going to be fracked.
How can a member of a conservation board have the conscience to vote against a moratorium to stop fracking? Another politician who is trying to be reelected is Rep. Eileen Kowall, my 44th District representative of Michigan, who was appointed to the Michigan Energy Committee following her 2010 reelection, was interviewed December 2009, stating that she would eliminate the Department of Environmental Quality, DEQ, if she had the authority.
The DEQ is the agency that gave authority to the Department of Natural Resources, DNR, to conduct the May 2012 mineral rights auction. Could there be a conflict of interest with Rep. Kowall and the DEQ? Was the DEQ given an ultimatum that if they did not expedite fracking permits, then their agency would be dissolved?
I spoke with Neil Wallace, who is a candidate for Independence Township supervisor and is against fracking in our township and said he will do everything in his power to stop this in our township. The choice is yours this November 2012 to cast your vote for someone who has the best interest in preserving the quality of our drinking water, lakes, and streams, or someone who is only concerned about their pocketbook being lined by greedy corporations that want to exploit the pristine resources of Michigan?
Schroeder led on issues
The Clarkston community has an important primary election coming up on Aug. 7 and I'm calling out to my neighbors to please do your homework before you vote, in order to put the best candidates on the slate for our Independence Township Board.
I would like to endorse Andrea Schroeder for township trustee. Many of us know that Andrea has already spent years working hard for this town, in her various volunteer roles:
As a PTA leader, she successfully unraveled a wrong done to three different school parent groups, by one individual, and spent hours of her own time researching the details and working to achieve justice for over 1500 families effected by this wrong.
Andrea was instrumental in "finally" getting a traffic light adjusted at a dangerous intersection in the approach to the High School. She collaborated with our district leadership and was thorough in her preparation, resulting in a benefit to the whole community.
Mrs. Schroeder was the driving force behind a successful "NO Spice/K2 Clarkston" campaign . Her efforts resulted in the elimination of all sales of Spice and K2 from retailers in our township, long before our Federal Government recognized and acted on these dangerous drugs.
Above are just a few examples of how Andrea's CAN DO attitude has benefited our township. She has the education and the experience, but she stands out because of her efforts for our community - let's make it official and vote her in as Independence Township Trustee.
There are four seats to fill and only one incumbent. But with 11 people running and turnout for primary elections typically low, literally every vote matters - Please take the time to vote on August 7, 2012!
Support for Brown
Elect a financial professional for treasurer – Paul Brown!
When Paul casually mentioned one evening that he was considering leaving his CFO position to run for treasurer, we were thrilled. We can't think of a more qualified person for the job!
Paul has been our next door neighbor for many years and you surely could not ask for a better one. Paul is always someone you can call for assistance, no matter the time of day or night. He will never ask what or why, just when and what you need. He is like that with everyone. Paul always has a wave and a smile and takes time to stop and visit with everyone. He has made his house a beautiful home and what once was a strained and unfriendly neighborhood on Thendara on Walters Lake has now become an enjoyable place. We believe it has a lot to do with Paul's personality and friendliness. Never have we heard him speak unkindly about anyone - he always finds the good in people and situations. He is a throwback to the days long ago that we all remember and yearn for.
The township has not had a professional financial manager in place, and it shows. Oakland County has a three year balanced budget – the only county in the country to do so. The reason is simple – efficient financial professionals with prudent long-term planning and goals. Not only does Paul have the same mindset, but he has an accounting degree from Oakland University, is a Certified Public Accountant and a business consultant, an expert in process improvements and is the CFO of a large medical company.
While Curt Carson is a very nice man and has had a long career as a realtor, those are not adequate qualifications. Real estate is a far cry from managing and budgeting the finances of a large township where millions of dollars handled.. We need someone that has the experience with fiscal organization and management on a large scale with a long-term vision for the years ahead. Paul has been doing just that successfully in the private sector for years. Isn't it time we have a financial professional handling our money in the treasurer's office?
As our treasurer, he will be a fabulous asset to our township by being a positive representative on our behalf as an honest and hardworking employee of both residents and business owners. We have no doubt that with his vast experience as a CPA, he will quickly solve problems of careless spending and find the best ways to utilize our funds in an efficient manner and also address ways to increase our assets. He will undoubtedly create a system that can be used for many, many years to come that will keep our township running like a successful corporation.
Paul has made a commitment to the community he holds dear to work hard to use our money in the most responsible ways possible. More importantly, Paul has no political agenda. Enthusiasm and honesty is 'catching' and desperately needed, not only in Independence Township, but everywhere. We truly believe that because of his passion for his profession, his decency and sincerity, Paul will help other elected officials put their personal and political agendas aside and work together for the good of the township, its businesses and the residents.
Paul loves his community and is proud to tell everyone he is 'from here and for here'. Get excited about our future and vote for Paul Brown - he will make us all proud!
Al and Jody La Londe