Fruitport Downtown Development Authority (DDA) Board Meeting Minutes – 02/24/21

Fruitport Township Downtown Development Authority (DDA) Board meeting

February 24, 2021 @ 6:00pm via

In attendance: Todd Dunham, Gary Smith, Larry Hall, Tim Reilly, Larry Romanelli, Heidi Tice, Mark Campbell
Absent: Jason Bronhold, Randy Klingel
Also in attendance: Brian Michelli

Meeting was called to order at 6:20 p.m. (meeting was delayed due to technical issues with zoom meetings platform)

Approval of the minutes for meeting February 11,2021: Motion by Todd Dunham second by Heidi Tice – Gary Smith asked to include his full comments about what the tax capture would look like for the DDA and/or what the DDA is asking for to make the projects happen and how developers would guarantee to pay back bonds. Todd amended motion and Heidi seconded

Roll Call, unanimous. (Larry Hall, Tim Reilly, Gary Smith, Tod Dunham, Heidi Tice) Larry Rominelli not on yet Mark Campbell dropped off).

1.) Meet the board members: This was overlooked

2.) Review and acceptance of the DDA board by-laws
Much discussion ensued:

  • Heidi Tice – pointed out the Article IV section 2 states there needs to be a resident on the DDA board. Heidi was instructed to check with Attorney Ron Bultje to see if this was a requirement.
  • A consensus was established to make the annual meeting the 1st Thursday in June so members of the board that go south would be around.
  • Discussion on whether the DDA board should mirror the township boards fiscal years was discussed. Members felt it was easier to do a January to December fiscal year, Heidi Tice would check with Attorney Ron Bultje if that would be a problem.
  • Tim Reilly expressed a concern about the indemnification and liability of the board members. He suggested possible insurance policies put into place for the board members. Could not answer if this would need to be in the by-laws, Heidi Tice was going to check with Attorney Ron Butje.
  • Gary Smith, Tim Reilly, Todd Dunham all expressed concern about setting up a section that addresses repayment of any bonds and what if a developer’s project fails who is on the hook for that bond. Heidi Tice would ask Attorney Ron Bultje if this should be addressed in the by-laws. This was a very important topic to all members.
  • Heidi Tice asked if the board would need a Federal Identification Number and a tax return. Can the records that are addressed in Article V section 16 be kept at the Township Hall? Todd Dunham felt that would be alright with the township. Heidi will ask the attorney Ron Bultje.

A motion was made by Todd Dunham and seconded by Larry Romanelli to make the Annual meeting the 1st Thursday of June and the fiscal year January 1 – December 31.

Roll Call, unanimous. (Heidi Tice, Larry Romanelli, Larry Hall, Gary Smith, Tim Reilly, Todd Dunham (Mark Campbell was still off line)

3.) Assignment of Initial Board Terms: Heidi Tice read off the terms that were approved by the Township Board on their February 22,2021 meeting as follows:

a. 1 year term
—i. Jason Bronhold
—ii. Scott Campbell
b. 2 year term
—i. Randy Klingel
—ii. Larry Hall
c. 3 year term
—i. Larry Romanelli
—ii. Tim Reilly
d. 4 year term
—i. Gary Smith
—ii. Heidi Tice

Todd Dunham stated the members were given terms in alphabetical order to the last name. After the initial term is met they will renew for 4 year terms as approved by the township board.

4.) Initial & Future DDA project list: (attached at end if minutes)
A possible outline was drafted and discussed with the township Utilities Director Steve Biesiada. Larry Hall explained the document stating each possible project would come to the board independently and the only project in the foreseeable futures is the Harvey Street and Quarterline Road Utilities Extensions. This outline is to help the county understand what the DDA board is looking for in a plan and to give dollar amounts to that plan that are realistic. The members wanted to add the verbiage “street scapes” to line h to better detail that line item and increase the value to $500,000.00. They included a line l. as future park development with a dollar amount of $500,000.00 giving the total possible plan a value of $11,610,914.00.

Gary Smith asked to get a map of were the possible developments would happen within the DDA boundaries.

A consensus of the board was to amend the potential projects plan and put a 20 year time frame for completion on the projects for Supervisor Todd Dunham to share with the county attorney. This is not the DDA board official plan so no motion was made for adoption it is only a conceptual tool for the county’s cooperation in the DDA.

5.) Other business: A next meeting date was set for March 4, 2021 at 6:00 p.m. via zoom and there was no other business so a motion to adjourn was made by Larry Romanelli seconded by Todd Dunham

Roll call, unanimous: (Heidi Tice, Larry Romanelli, Larry Hall, Gary Smith, Tim Reilly, Todd Dunham)

Meeting adjourned at 7:45 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,
Heidi Tice – Secretary/Treasury