Township Board Minutes – June 11th, 2015

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Helena Township Board Meeting

June 11th, 2015


Meeting was called to order at 7:00 PM by Supervisor Rick Teague.  Present:  Catherine Rice, David Peterson, Bonnie Robbins and Butch Bartz. Motion to approve agenda by Robbins with support by Bartz and motion carried.

Conflict of Interest: None

Public Comment: Bill Baumgartner, secretary of Sunset Estates Homeowners Association, spoke about the ballpark not being an appropriate venue for the proposed fireworks display.

Gordy Schaffer, representing the South Torch Area Association (STAA), stated that the fireworks would be loaded on barges July 3rd at the ballpark.  The STAA needed money to fix the barges and there was an offer of assistance given by the Sunset Estates Homeowners Association.

Paul Fabiano, representing STAA, stated that there would be a safety zone of 100 feet secured around the area where the barges would be loaded during the period from 9:00 AM to 7:00 PM on July 3rd.

Jesse Lane, STLFD fire chief, stated that a firetruck would be on site at the ballpark during the 9:00 Am to 7:00 PM period for loading the fireworks onto the barges.

Ted Culver, Fowler Lane resident spoke about concerns regarding safety for the residences.

Bill Hehs spoke about resident’s concerns near the ballpark and apologized for his letter to the editor.

Jim Gurr spoke about community, neighbors and twp. board having the citizens best interest in their decision making process.

Bill Baumgartner spoke about helping to put out swim buoys off shore from the ballpark, and was referred to maintenance personnel.

Approval of minutes: Motion by Bartz to approve May’s minutes with support by Teague and the motion carried.

Treasurer’s Report:  Township:  Beginning balance as of May1st, 2015              $596,809.08                                                                                                                       

                                                         Receipts                                                                 $2,239.34

                                                         Disbursements                                                   $187,080.77

                                                         Bank balance 05/31/2015                                  $411,967.65

Motion to approve the Treasurer’s report by Robbins with support by Teague and motion carried.

Presentation of bills:  May 1-31, 2015 – $177,815.87and June 1-11; 2015 – $10,751.89.                               

Speakers: None


Committee Reports:

Zoning – Zoning Administrator Guy Molby gave report for May, 2015.

Planning Commission – Robbins reported PC discussed eight points for the Master Plan review and the prohibition of fireworks on township properties and public accesses. It was stated that is covered under the State statute for fireworks.

Ambulance Authority – April 1st nine townships ended relationship with Allied EMS.

Parks and Recreation Committee – Ruth Smith reported that Parks & Rec would like to place a dog bag station at the Depot and the ballpark.  Teague made the motion to purchase two dog bag stations with support by Robbins and motion carried.

There was an error in the DNR grant request for the township’s matching share.  The original resolution was for $9675.00 and should be $9700.00.  Teague made the motion for a new resolution for $9700.00 with support by Robbins.  Roll call vote was Rice – yes, Peterson – yes, Teague – yes, Robbins – yes and Bartz – yes.

Paul Delange, Alden Historical Society, presented letter from the State of Michigan Historical Society giving permission to proceed with a shed attached to the storage building adjacent to the Depot.

Roads:  Bartz reported that after the 4th of July that both road projects would begin; both ends of Cemetery road and paving Paige road from E. Torch Lake Drive to Chapman road.

Old Business: Fireworks permit update given by Teague.  There are legal review requirements that are being reviewed by township lawyer; Kate Redman.  The fireworks display will not take place at the ballpark.  The ballpark will be used for loading the barges and a fire truck will be on site from 9:00 AM to 7:00 PM on July 3rd.

New Business:  Rice presented tax resolution 61115 to approve the continuation of 1% per month for the property tax administration fee (PTAF), and 3% penalty after February 14th.  Teague made the motion to approve this resolution with support by Bartz and roll call vote: Rice – yes, Peterson – yes, Teague – yes, Robbins – yes, and Bartz – yes.

Announcements:   Teague announced STLFD and Helena Township budget hearing meetings are June 17th at 10:00 AM in the government office in the community center.

Additional Public comment: Linda Gallagher wanted clarification concerning the fireworks and Jim Gurr reiterated that he was pleased with the compromise for the fireworks and that the twp. always does its due diligence on issues, no matter how big or small before coming to a conclusion or a vote..

Motion to pay bills: Teague made motion to pay bills with support by Bartz and motion carried.

Meeting was adjourned by call of the Chair at 7:40 PM.


Respectfully submitted,


David G. Peterson Jr., Helena Township Clerk_

_David G. Peterson Jr.