Fruitport Township Board Meeting Minutes – June 12, 2017


A work session of the Fruitport Charter Township Board began at 6:30pm on Monday, June 12, 2017, in the township board room.

Members Present: Heidi Tice, Supervisor; Andrea Anderson, clerk; Rose Dillon, Treasurer; Trustees Ron Becklin, Greg Hulka (arrived at 7:50pm, tardiness excused), Jeff Jacobs, and Denise Winebarger. Members Absent: none

At 7:02pm, Heidi Tice opened the regular meeting with the Pledge of Allegiance followed by a prayer.

Also Present: 15– residents, 0 – employees, 0- guests, Director of Public Safety, Brian Michelli, and Director of Public Utilities, Ron Langlois.

The motion by Ron Becklin, supported by Denise Winebarger, was carried unanimously, to approve the minutes of May 22, 2017 as presented with the following changes:

Item 17-077
a) A DDA would be of benefit to property owners within the DDA district.
f) The school district would lose a portion of the tax dollars that would be captured by the DDA.

a) A DDA would be of benefit to the township and property owners within the DDA district.
f) The school district would lose the incremental growth of tax dollars that would be captured by the DDA.

The motion by Rose Dillon, supported by Denise Winebarger, was carried unanimously, to approve the agenda as presented.


1) Michigan Townships Association legislative updates of May 26 & June 9, 2017.
2) There will be a day of review for the drainage district boundaries for the Bussing Drain, Wednesday, June
21, 2017 from 9:00am-5:00pm at the Muskegon County Drain Commissioner’s Office located at 141 E.
Apple Ave, 2nd floor, Muskegon, MI 49442
3) Population growth report for Muskegon County ranked the population growth for the Township and
Village of Fruitport at 3.4% with the rest of the county’s growth rates ranging between .2% and 1.7%.
4) Ron Langlois reported that the Vandenberg/Summit water main project is complete. The township will be accepting applications for connection immediately.
5) Ron Langlois reported that the Broadway Lift Station refurbishing will begin next week and should take approximately 3 weeks for completion.


1) Dawn Diesel, 2958 Vandenberg, questioned when mailboxes will be replaced now that the water main project is complete. Ron Langlois said it would be done tomorrow.


17-082 Review employment contract for Deputy Chief of Police
Brian Michelli asked that the Board review and bring the topic back at the next meeting.

17-083 Resolution for Mt. Garfield Rd road improvement
Project is in line to be completed over the summer.

Rose Dillon moved, supported by Ron Becklin, MOTION CARRIED, to adopt the resolution and authorize the Township Supervisor to execute the contract on behalf of the Township.

Ayes: Becklin, Jacobs, Anderson, Tice, Dillon, Winebarger Nays: None Absent: Hulka

17-084 Discussion on the formation of a DDA
Highlights of the discussion include:

a) A DDA committee would be appointed by the Township Board
b) The committee would formulate a plan that would require Township Board approval
c) DDA money could be spend on various degrees of property improvement
d) More tax dollars would be kept locally vs. trickling to other taxing authorities

Mr. Odell Ellis, 2339 Cress Creek Drive inquired on what a DDA is, will it be of benefit to the residents, and will it increase taxes.
Answer: a Downtown District Authority will benefit the area as a whole and will not increase taxes.

17-085 Rental Inspection status update
The motion by Rose Dillon, supported by Ron Becklin, was carried unanimously to TABLE this topic until the next meeting.

17-086 Discussion on special assessment for Public Safety
Brian Michelli asked the board to determine how the assessment would be allocated, be it an assessment on a district as a whole or site specific and whether each entity would be allowed a predetermined number of calls per year before the assessment would take effect.

It was broken down that the cost of running calls for the police department is $142.50/hour.

It was requested that this topic be brought back in front of the Board at the next meeting.


17-087 Public Hearing- Special Assessment District Vandenberg/Summit road improvement

(a.) Rose Dillon moved, seconded by Jeff Jacobs MOTION CARRIED, to open the Public Hearing at 7:36pm.

Ayes: Winebarger, Dillon, Tice, Anderson, Jacobs, Becklin Nays: none Absent: Hulka

(b.) Public Hearing: The Supervisor announced that this hearing is to hear public comment and accept written objections regarding the setting of a special assessment district for road improvements on Vandenberg Rd and Summit Ave. The assessment amount would be divided equally and assessed per parcel per the request of the residents, totaling $3,976 per parcel on Summit Ave and $1,760 per parcel on Vandenberg Rd. The residents would have the option of paying up front or having the amount added in equal installments to their tax bill at 6% interest.

Kevin Sikkinga, 2875 Vandenberg, shared questions inquiring if the idea came from board resolution or resident petitions, what percent of residents signed in favor, what are the costs, how is it assessed, and are residents required to hook up to the newly completed water supply. Kevin shared his disapproval of the assessment.

Cindy Beckwith, 1931 E. Broadway, questioned why her property was included in the assessment district since Summit only runs on the backside of her property. She also inquired if there were any plans to force Walmart to pay for the water main project claiming that they are responsible for the high sodium level in the well water.

Molly Wahr, 2924 Vandenberg, inquired if the project would result in a new road or simply tar and gravel added on top. Also, what percent of the cost is the Muskegon County Road Commission covering?

The Pressey residence,1901 E. Summit Ave asked when the project would begin and how would homes be connected to the new water supply once the road is complete.

Written objections were received by the board from Kevin Sikkinga, Odell Elis, and Jeffery Beckwith.

(c.) The motion by Rose Dillon, supported by Ron Becklin, was carried unanimously to close the Public Hearing at 8:30pm and return to open session.

Ron Becklin moved, Greg Hulka seconded, MOTION CARRIED, to adopt Resolution to authorize procedures to set up a special assessment district for Vandenberg Rd/Summit Ave road improvements.

Ayes: Hulka, Dillon, Tice, Anderson, Jacobs, Becklin Nays: Winebarger

Ron Becklin moved, Rose Dillon seconded, MOTION CARRIED, to adopt resolution scheduling the public hearing on the setting of the assessment roll for Vandenberg Rd/Summit Ave road improvement special assessment district No. 2017-1.

Ayes: Hulka, Winebarger, Dillon, Tice, Anderson, Jacobs, Becklin Nays: none

Full text of said resolutions can be found on file in the Clerk’s office. Filed with documentation on SAD 2017-1

17-088 Approval of State Chemical Solutions agreement
This agreement is to provide solvents such as car wash, degreaser, glass cleaner, hand soap, and the like to the public safety department. It will be a cost savings to the department.

Rose Dillon moved, supported by Denise Winebarger, MOTION CARRIED, to authorize Brian Michelli to enter into the agreement and sign the contract.

Ayes: Becklin, Jacobs, Anderson, Tice, Dillon, Winebarger, Hulka Nays: none

17-089 Approval of funds transfer for previously approved air packs for the Fire Department
Ron Becklin moved, supported by Rose Dillon, MOTION CARRIED, to approve a transfer of not more than $80,000 from the General Fund to the Public Safety fund, effective March 31, 2017.

Ayes: Becklin, Jacobs, Anderson, Tice, Dillon, Winebarger, Hulka Nays: none

17-090 New website discussion
Heidi Tice asked that, for the sake of time, this item be TABLED until the next meeting.

17-091 Adoption of MTA’s Principles of Governance
Board members expressed that the oath they took upon entering office declared similar sentiments, therefore did not see the need to make motion; topic was dropped.

17-092 Payment of bills
Ron Becklin moved, Denise Winebarger seconded, MOTION CARRIED, to approve bills as presented for payment in the following amounts: General Fund & Parks $23,471.46; Public Safety $33,217.92; Water $199,918.84; Sewer $17,881.62; Street Lights $12,795.50; Trust & Agency $1,645.00     Totaling: $289,610.09

Ayes: Becklin, Jacobs, Anderson, Tice, Dillon, Winebarger, Hulka Nays: none


1)     Andrea Anderson announced that Fruitport Charter Township now has a Facebook page that will be used to share community happenings and such.
2)     Andrea Anderson shared that the Township is working on fundraising for the large 9-11 memorial flag flown at I-96 and US-31. Any donations can be made at Town Hall.
3)     Brian Michelli reported that new fire hose, boots, helmets, and gloves have been ordered and should come in under budget.
4)     Brian Michelli reported that the TV in the Chambers Board Room has been hooked up to allow its use for presentations.
5)     Brian Michelli reported that both the police and fire departments’ call volumes are ahead of last year.
6) Brian Michelli shared tax collection and disbursement numbers for Westshore Plaza
7)     Brian Michelli reported that Fruitport’s first Community Day was a success. Residents came out and enjoyed participating in stations from each of the township’s departments. Thank you to the Fruitport
Lions for providing food for the event.
8)     Heidi Tice announced that the next Community event will be a large slip ‘n slide at Pamona Park on July 22, 2017 from 11:00am-1:00pm.


1) Rick Tice, 63 S. Eighth, commented on areas of Town Hall that need maintenance or repair.

The motion by Greg Hulka, supported by Ron Becklin was carried unanimously, to adjourn the meeting at 9:16pm.