Source: Sherman Publications

Village representatives to meet on detachment issue

by David Fleet

August 29, 2012

Goodrich- In a special meeting on Wednesday, the village council OK’d 4-1 to send three representatives to a meeting with John O’Brien, director of the water and waste services division of the drain commissioner’s office, to talk about the ramifications of the November detachment vote.

The vote comes after village resident Patricia Wartella filed signed petitions in April to the Genesee County Clerk for the detachment of 87 parcels of property within the village to Atlas Township. The areas include properties on Shuman Drive and in Mill Pointe Shores and Fairview Hills subdivisions. The Genesee County Board of Commissioners unanimously voted to put the partial detachment of the village to the township on the Nov. 8 ballot. Residents of Goodrich, the township, and the proposed detached areas will vote—a simple majority is needed.

O’Brien’s letter to form a committee in September was received by both Atlas Township and the village last month.

The idea is to establish value on the assets prior to the vote in November, O’Brien said during a village meeting. The correspondence was necessary to hammer out a decision, starting in September, by providing Atlas Township and village residents information regarding costs of the detachment. However, the information from the meeting would not be binding since the election must occur prior to any legal contracts between any entity.

The village will send Jakki Sidge, village administrator, Mark Baldwin, village council trustee, and Norm Bass, village resident, to a meeting within the next week.

“We’ll meet with O’Brien before Sept. 10,” said Rick Horton, village council president. “We’ll have some idea of what costs are going to be for the village sewers, even if the township does not want to attend. There’s too many conflicts in going to the polls and not knowing what residents are voting for—we have to have an idea of the costs. The people of the village have to know the numbers. Even if it may be generalities.”

Trustee Doug McAbee voted no.

“Let’s have the meeting in public,” he said after the meeting. “All the residents should have the answers, not just a few selected individuals.”

However, the trio from the village selected to attend the meeting with O’Brien will not be joined by representatives of Atlas Township.

“Any questions regarding the detachment should be directed to Township Attorney David Lattie,” said Shirley Kautman-Jones, township supervisor.

There was no indication if a village or township attorney will attend the upcoming meeting with O’Brien.