Sunday, January 20, 2013

1960's Document and Cost of Road Repaving

Hi All,
Seems like repaving road surfaces in subdivisions is a hot topic in Bloomfield Township.

Supervisor Leo Savoie will be attending the Hickory Heights Subdivision evening meeting on Tuesday, January 22, 2013 @ Harlan Elementary School on Adams Road.   
This is a meeting for subdivision members...not a public hearing. 

As always, I highly recommend that the township residents that are affected by this planned subdivision meeting attend and learn about the issue.  The area of Hickory Heights Subdivision is approximately 366 homes with Adams Rd. to your east boundary, Wattles Rd. to your southern boundary, either Charing Cross or Squirrel Rd. to your western boundary, and your northern boundary is where the Eastover Subdivision begins.

The 51% signatures needed on a petition to begin the process of forming a S.A.D.  (Special Assessment District) to repave the subdivision roads means only 186 property owners (if home owned jointly, must have all signatures on the petition) are needed to put this proposal into motion.  However, all 366 homes in Hickory Heights Subdivision will bear the cost if the project is a go.

Instead of having a representative from Oakland County Road Commission as originally scheduled for a May 2012 meeting about repaving the roads, this subdivision has invited Supervisor Savoie to their January 2013 meeting.  Why?

In an earlier blog on repaving projects proposed for 2013  I informed the readers that the TOWNSHIP seemed to have a different plan to offer the subdivision residents for repaving  than that offered by the COUNTY.   The difference seemed to be on length of time to pay the debt, the interest rate offered, and that the assessed properties would be of EQUAL assessment vs how much road frontage of your property.  When did they start this program?

While equal assessments certainly makes the math easier to determine how much it will cost each property owner, is it different from the county billing? In the past and currently?? the county would assess each property owner depending on the amount (in feet) of property at the road.

Who requests the bids for the work?  How many bids are received?  Who decides and awards the contract? Does the township have related costs that are not covered by the assessment to the property owners in the subdivision?  

Hickory Heights Subdivision Meeting has more on the agenda.
The tip I received about this meeting suggested that a proposed by-law revision to also be voted on at this meeting of the Hickory Heights Subdivision members  will somehow change the petition rules of 51%.  I don't believe that information is true, but I don't have all the FACTS.  The tip also brought up BHS school issues.  Some of this subdivision is also in the Birmingham School District. Subdivision members need to address these issues at their meeting.

Please pass this blog on to friends and family that live in the Hickory Heights Subdivision.  Thanks.
Just as important, you should pay attention to YOUR subdivision and what YOUR township is doing and how both plan on spending YOUR $$$.  Be informed.

All Township Residents Should Know About this Document from the 1960's
The most amazing piece of information I discovered while researching this issue, was a letter sent by the township to Hickory Heights Subdivision to be passed on to all the residents about a 1960's document where the Township OPTED OUT of a statewide tax measure that would provide for county road resurfacing.  Really?

By opting out,  the township will ONLY receive sweeping, plowing, salting and patchwork to maintain roads.  Excuse me?  Our township is NOT RECEIVING this work either from the county. Our township road department currently performs those jobs for our subdivision roads as I understand it. 

Is there another road department document? Answer, I believe yes...where we get tax money back from the county every year to perform this work.  The Township receives $607,000 from Oakland County as "revenue" and the Township residents pay the $4,083,690 expenses for our own Road Department to do road work.  How fair is that?

 I have NOT seen the document from the 1960's, but found it referenced as stated below.
From Oct. 9, 2012 Board Meeting for Hickory Heights Subdivision

So is this the reason the TAXPAYER is assessed the costs to repave the roads???

Why would the Township OPT OUT in 1960's?  Was it a good deal at the time?  What does this document actually say?  I don't have time to FOIA this document as the meeting is in 2 days.  I do not know anyone that lives in that subdivision.  I'll update this information when I receive it.

Meanwhile, let's talk about the TOWNSHIP road department.  All township taxpayers pay a millage for roads.  That millage is nearing it's end, and a renewal or increase will most likely be requested.
Please read an older blog of mine about the Township Road Department and their BUDGET from 2012.   A massive budget...way over the millage collected.  Read why.

The 2013-14 preliminary budget is on the township website for you to review. That VOTE by the Board  and PUBLIC HEARING will be soon as the fiscal year ends March 31 for the Township.
Do you like what you see in this budget? 
An Important Fact To Remember 
YOU can control the budget by how you vote on MILLAGE requests.

The below picture is from last year's budget presentation.  Question:  Are ALL OF US paying the price for each subdivision that repaves the roads? 

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