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Rutland Township agrees to road millage ballot question

Luke Froncheck

Staff Writer

The consensus of the Rutland Charter Township Board of Trustees at its Feb. 12 meeting was they should seek a road millage in the next year. Once that agreement was reached, the board had another question: When?

Supervisor Larry Watson asked board members their views on any potential millage as a part of his supervisor’s report. Trustees Marlin Walters and Sandra James were absent from the meeting.

 Some board members acknowledged that the last time the township sought a road millage, voters responded with a resounding no.

“I know how it has turned out in the past, but that doesn’t mean it will be the same,” Watson said.

The previous road millage asked $500,000 for dust control and work on some paving projects.

“I’m of the opinion we should ask,” Trustee Matt Spencer said. “I think the money needs to be put into the roads. If we don’t ask for it then we don’t know. It’s going to be a tough sell because of our governor and fixing the roads.”

Watson asked trustees about putting a road millage on the August ballot.

Because the township already will be paying for elections in August and November, putting a road millage question on the ballot would impose no additional cost to the township.

“Now is the time to do it,” Watson said.

Another concern board members had was that they could potentially be competing with requests for a jail millage and a Commission on Aging millage in the August election. If the township waits until November, board members expressed concern that a road millage question could be buried in other ballot items. The other issue with the November ballot is potential state proposals that could be added.

Board members agreed to place a millage request on the ballot, but they did not decide on an amount or whether the request would appear on the August or November ballot.

In other business, the board:

- Passed a resolution that updates the personal leave policy for township employees. Given Wednesday’s approval, regular hourly employees are now eligible for paid personal leave and holiday pay if the holiday falls on their scheduled workdays. This change comes as the township is expecting to hire a new employee who will work less than 20 hours a week. Under the former policy, the employee would not be eligible for paid personal and holiday leave.

- Approved a PA116 farmland application for Luke Haywood.

- Approved a fireworks permit requested by the Algonquin Lake Association for its show Friday, July 3.

- Voted to establish an absentee voter counting board for even-year elections due to the number of absentee ballots that must be counted.

The next township board meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. March 11.


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