Tuesday, October 25, 2016

"Refunding Bonds" Removed from Wed. Agenda (10-26-16) and D. Thomas letter to Editor

Hi All,
The township CHANGED the online posted agenda for this WEDNESDAY,  Oct. 26, 2016  Board of Trustees meeting @ 7 PM.

They have REMOVED the REFUNDING of BONDS  from this agenda.  Hmmm.  Could it be because of my blog on this issue?

Or could it be because of a letter to the editor of the Birmingham Eccentric that was published in the print edition of the Sunday,  October 23, 2016 edition?   David Thomas,  (who lost to Leo Savoie in the August 2, 2016 Republican Primary for the Bl. Twp. position of Supervisor... by less than 500 votes)  was the author of that letter to the editor opinion piece.   (I could not find the letter online, so with permission from the author, the letter is copied at the end of this blog.)

Or was the issue of refunding the bonds removed because the township leadership and their NO BID contractors are getting nervous about how the township often conducts business?

Perhaps the feds are now looking at this municipality and contractors ?

At any rate,  the REFUNDING of the BONDS  is no longer an agenda item for Wed., Oct. 26.    To be rescheduled for a different meeting.

The "To Be Discussed at a Later Date"  notice is the only place on this website that notes the change... and even then,  does not even acknowledge the fact that the online agenda posting said something else previously.  Wonder what else gets changed electronically at Bloomfield Township without notice?

Reprinted with permission from David Thomas.

What Are Our Tax Dollars Paying for in Bloomfield Township?
Bloomfield Township has one of the highest property tax rates for a Michigan Township.  What are we getting for that? Special millages pay for Police and Fire; SAD’s pay for sewer and road improvements, and residents pay for trash pick-up. So what are we really getting for our tax dollars? 
This question is very relevant given the recent expose on the Rizzo trash hauling bribery case in Clinton Township.  No bid contracts were the basic issue of the investigation.
Presently Bloomfield Township has three executive positions that are costing the taxpayer approximately $430,000 plus cars, maintenance, gas, insurance, and perks bringing the cost of these positions to approximately $500,000 or more annually.  They were asked multiple times in Trustee meetings to put in place a procurement policy that requires competitive bidding for professional services and outside contractors.  Every time they refused to do it, often with smirks on their faces. What is more troubling, many of the beneficiaries of Township contracts were campaign donors to the Supervisor and others.
Last February the Trustees renewed the latest contract with Rizzo, without any competitive bidding.  After last Sunday’s revelations in the Detroit Free Press about the pay for play in Clinton Township the question has to be why? 
The bigger question is why should the public continue to pay these folks the big bucks when they are obviously not interested in doing their basic fiduciary duty.  I cannot think of a better reason to reduce their positions to part time with a stipend of $20,000 annually; no cars or benefits, and replace them with a city manager who will do the job properly.
In April 2015, the Trustee’s attempted to make the case for reducing the Treasurer’s job to part time.  The Supervisor tried to make the case by citing the fact that the Deputy Treasurer did most of the work and that the Treasurer did not have to put in a full 40 hours to do the job. Observing the vehicles in the Township parking lot each day; a case could be made that none of the leadership is there 40 hours a week.
Bloomfield Township will soon have an administration made up of three people who all have outside business interests, several with potential or direct conflicts of interest with running the Township.  We now have a unique time and legitimate reason to make these positions part time.
If the Trustees are not willing to do their most basic function; protecting the taxpayers hard earned money, then it is time to reduce their pay.  They have been acting cavalier with our tax dollars by placing a major multi-million-dollar contract that spans multiple years without getting at least 3 bids! 
Rizzo has provided very good service, but that alone does not exclude them from having to bid on any renewals. Having an effective purchasing policy and competitive bidding are cornerstones in helping to keep our taxes down.
David C. Thomas
2945 W. Hickory Grove Rd.


  1. A concerned resident.October 26, 2016 at 10:13 AM

    Kudos to Marcia and Dave!
    It is imperative that our township have competitive bidding on the trash contract and on all similar contracts so that our residents get the lowest price for quality service. With that in mind the bond matter must also be bid competitively. MSRB (Municipals Securities Rulemaking Board) lists the following other Michigan advisor/underwriters besides the Bendzinski company that the Trustees are pushing for: Clear Scope Advisors, Inc., Great Disclosure LLC, Gregory J. Schwartz, Multi Bank Securities, Inc., Municipal Financial Consultants, Inc. and Taktix Solutions LLC. We are paying or Township officials to work for our residents. Let' make sure they are doing this.

    The FINRA website indicates that Fifth Third Securities, the underwriter the township wants to use without any competitive bidding, has had to pay many fines for their wrongdoing, including one fine for $1.75 Million and another for $1 Million! whereas one of the other companies mentioned in the township's 9-26-16 minutes---Hutchinson, Shockey, Erley & Co.-- had far fewer fines and with the highest fine being only $220,000. Why would we ever want to use Fifth Third Securities? Also, regardless the township must use competitive bidding for this.
    It's not too late. Lets vote Dave Thomas in on November 8th by writing him in on our ballots! Dave has filed the necessary documents so that write in votes for him will be counted. Change your absentee ballots now or vote for him at the polls. Leo Savoie is not doing what he should be doing.