Source: Sherman Publications

Township dumps rec plan offer

by David Fleet

December 21, 2011

Atlas Twp.- The township will not sign on to a Village of Goodrich recreation plan.

By a 4-1 vote on Monday night, township trustees said no thanks to an opportunity to join the plan offered by village officials.

The village paid planners to create the plan about six years ago and are now in the process of making updates. The plan identifies recreation areas, specifies potential areas of expansion and goals for the village. The plan is necessary, said Goodrich Village Administrator Jakki Sidge, to see where the community has been and how to provide recreational services to the area.

Township Supervisor Shirley Kautman-Jones voted to join the plan.

“We don’t have a park and rec plan in the township,” she said. “It was offered at no cost, with no strings attached. It’s just a plan on paper, I was comfortable with the clear understanding there’s no obligation with the parks. It’s not a joint commission from the two goverments. It’s just a vision.”

Kautman-Jones suggested expanding the bike path that runs between the village and township.

Trustee Barry June opposed joining the village recreation plan.

“There’s plenty of places to go and walk around the township,” said June. “I’ve not had people banging on my door looking for bike paths (to ride on).”

June was concerned that once the pathway is established the cost to maintain it can get expensive.

Village resident Norm Bass attended the meeting and expressed his displeasure with the board’s decision.

“We are all Atlas Township and pay taxes there,” said Bass. “The governor’s office is asking for cooperation between municipalities and the rec plan was in no way costing Atlas Township a dime. They throw it out the window. Right now they can’t get any grants for anything. This park and rec plan would open up avenues for the township. A plan on their own will cost them thousands. Because of the attitude of a few of the trustees we lose the direction of getting these grants. Now these same grants will now go to other communities rather than us. We are trying to work together.”