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Supervisor's viewpoint


Lessons learned, opportunities sought in township



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June 26, 2013 - Part two of two parts:

If you can't measure it … you can't manage it. Staying on task is critical in today's business world. Even more so when you are responsible for managing taxpayer's money. Last time we highlighted our actions covering Communications, Fiscal and Operations. This article will cover our final three scorecard categories — Economic Growth, Community and Infrastructure.

Economic Growth:

Sashabaw Corridor: Plan created and funding sources identified for I-75 / South Sashabaw Interchange and Sashabaw / Waldon Intersection. Plans presented to CIA and Planning Commissions, as well as the Township Board.

Dixie Hwy: Construction is in full swing on Dixie Highway. Plans to create "Welcome to Independence Township" marquees at the north and south Township borders in the works.

Hospital: Continuing to work with both local and state officials on the NEED for a new hospital. While this new hospital may be only 15 miles from the nearest trauma center, it is at-best a 25 minute ambulance ride … way too long when seconds count in a life threatening matter for a loved one.

Industrial Development District: The Township was approached by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation about a European Auto Parts manufacturer looking for a "friendly" community to set up business. The new company, Magneti Marelli, is currently renovating the vacant manufacturing facility at 5600 Bow Point bringing over 88 new jobs with an annual payroll exceeding $5M to our community. Magneti Marelli has informed the Township they will recruit locally.

Community:

Police: Was able to find money in the budget while keeping fund balances at acceptable levels to add an additional deputy on the afternoon shift.

Senior Center: Have been working with the Senior Advisory Board on finalizing their plans for an expansion project for their current building … doubling the footprint from 2200 to 4400 square feet. The $300,000 price tag will be covered with private funds.

Riparian Issues: Have quickly learned that arguments between Homeowner Associations regarding who can / can't put boats on a lake is a fight I want to avoid in the future at all costs. No matter what you do to try to solve the issue, someone will not be happy. This was an expensive lesson to learn.

Infrastructure:

Capital Improvement Plan: Continuing to scrub the Capital Improvement Plan. Have eliminated or deferred over $1M in expenses to date.

I.T.: We've replaced and upgraded the computer infrastructure at Town Hall to ensure that data consistency and integrity are maintained.

Brady Lodge: Have approved funds for site inspection / request for quote proposal to be generated.

Being new to the office, your township team quickly found there is no shortage of opportunities in our township. Our mission is pretty simple, to provide the "best services" at the "lowest cost possible" to enable current and future residents to want to live, work and play in our community. We've come a long way in six short months. We also realize we have a long way to go. With your help and continued support … it should be an interesting journey.

Pat Kittle is supervisor of Independence Township.

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