Alpena Township - A Charter Township
Tue, 27 Feb 2018 06:01:28 EST

On a split vote Monday, The Alpena Township Board of Trustees voted to become a charter township.

The action follows a resolution of intent passed by the board in December, and 60 day waiting period which enabled citizens to petition to have the issue put on the ballot. Around 475 signatures of registered voters had to be obtained , but just shy of 300 were collected by a citizens group.

Opposing the move were Treasurer Laura Ellery-Somers and Clerk Karie Bleau. During a public comment period, some citizens also spoke out against the action, noting there was inadequate time to organize a petition drive to put the question before voters with the holidays, cold weather and many residents gone for the winter.

Township supervisor Nathan Skibbe said tax rates remain the same and anything extra has to be approved by voters. Board Attorney Tim Gulden explained what does change, are some administrative functions, but not so much day to day operations.

A vote to disband the Charter Township Exploration committee was rejected also on split vote, Somers and Bleau in favor. Skibbe noting that there are still some things the committee can do, such as obtain more public input, develop more transparency, and study how to streamline the structure by cutting down on committee meetings, mileage and per diem.

Gulden said the resolution has immediate effect, and a copy will be sent to the county and state officials as a form of official notification.

Alpena Township Board of Trustees


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