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Keiser's Role


Keiser's Role A column by Trevor Keiser


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September 29, 2010 - I've had a few weeks to think about my last column about dissolving the city and making it part of Independence Township, along with considering the thoughts of those who have written letters to the editor, and various conversations I've had since then.

I still believe dissolving the city would be the best choice. No matter how you look at it, I can't justify paying twice as much in taxes for an extra layer of government who controls lawn mowing and grass cutting.

I know one letter writer said the debate "can't be just dollars and cents decision, it has to be based on us keeping our own identity."

What is your identity? If your identity is simply the historic homes and building within the village, I have no problem keeping a sign that says "Village of Clarkston" marking that people are entering the historic part of the town.

As far as votes "being swallowed up" by the township, they already are swallowed up. All critical services are controlled by Independence, and city residents have no vote. If the city becomes part of the township, every vote would be counted equally.

Another letter writer said they were all for getting rid of an extra layer of government, but disagreed with dropping the name, "Independence Township."

The issue I have with the name is the lack of originality. Mr. Joseph Van Sycle, who named it in 1834, named it after the place he came from. Pretty lame.

But naming a town after the first settlers, such as the Clark brothers, well, that's a little more original thinking and brings significance to it. Besides "Clarkston" just has a nice ring to it.

As far as both names "coexisting," I don't think that works either. Keeping both names still suggest separation, and turf war like mindedness, the idea is to become "one community."

***

Those interested in hearing more about it, tune into Clarkston411 on Thurs, Sept. 30 at 6 p.m., for a discussion featuring city resident and former councilman Cory Johnston and city resident and former township resident Michael Sabol, hosted by editor Phil Custodio.

Trevor graduated with degrees in English and communications from Rochester College. He wrote for his college and LA View newspapers before joining The Clarkston News in May 2007.
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