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Letter to the editor

'Sad day in Clarkston'

August 25, 2010 - Dear Editor,

It was a sad day in Clarkston to have to vote "for" or "against" a millage increase proposal, which made you feel you were losing the battle no matter which way you voted. A "no" vote eliminated our police protection but kept our current millage rate. A "yes" vote meant an unsubstantiated increase to our millage rate for the General Fund, which would supposedly keep our police protection in place. No wonder there were eleven people who wouldn't even vote on the proposal.

All of us are dealing with budget limitations in this economic environment and none of us want to add more taxes to the equation. The current millage rate we have, when applied to reducing property values, means less in the General Fund. Like all of us, the City must look at all options to meet the priorities of the City with the funds available.

With populations growing all around us, one priority we must be willing to afford is maintaining the safe haven status The Village of Clarkston has acquired. There is a reason why our property values and median household income is higher than our neighboring communities. I know I am not the only one to get off I-75 and breathe a sigh of relief to be back "home".

Safety and Wellness are very hard commodities to "sell". If your community is "safe", why do we need police protection. If you are not experiencing any health issues, why do you need a wellness program?

Obviously, or maybe not so obviously, the police and the safety measures you have in place are working for your community, or the diet and exercise you subscribe to are keeping you well. Take away your police and safety measures, or your diet and exercise program and you are faced with an ever-increasing possibility of an unsafe community or an unhealthy body.

Whether you rent, own, work or just play here, your safety and wellness matters to the community. It may mean volunteering your expertise to help the elected officials deal with our financial matters or, running for a committee or commission. We need to get what we so "dearly" pay for to live here. Write, attend meetings, attend fundraisers, stay in touch however you can to preserve and protect.

Lisabeth Schoebel


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