2016-01-14 / Viewpoint

Park millage is out of order

I’m not sure if it’s just the spirit of the new year or what (hope it’s not the water), but I find myself agreeing with Andre Visser on the letter to the editor he wrote last week in reference to the pending new millage for the Grand Blanc Township public park maintenance and upgrade.

We diverge a bit in that I believe the township has done quite well within the dramatically decreased property tax revenue over the last 5 or 6 years.

However that decreased revenue conundrum is rapidly reversing. Not only are property values increasing to past levels but, realtors are selling homes faster than they can get them listed. Prop A from the 90s limits taxable value increases to 3 percent annually, but allow it to go to full SEV (adjusted to sale price) upon sale. With SEV’s now at pre-recession levels, that means the property tax revenue is rapidly on the upswing.

Township residents have been very tolerant in accepting additional costs during this period. Incurring costs for such things as special assessments for subdivision road replacements, even without township contribution (as was always done in the past), property millage increases to the allowed max not previously required, and even a recent 17 year special millage for “technology upgrades” in the schools a couple months ago.

In the mean time we also have vehicle registrations and gas tax increases at the State level about to kick in. With the same kind of excise tax per gallon increase expected at the Federal level soon.

Now, with the economy improving, car sales at an all-time record level, the Feds even acknowledging it by beginning to normalize interest rate controls, it is time for that “normalization” to start reflecting at the local level for those tolerant citizens of Grand Blanc

Township.

This upcoming millage for park maintenance is quite out of order.

The Township should either reverse its position or cancel it, or the citizens should simply reject it on the basis of lack of need.

As Andre mentioned, Mr. Guzak said the residents will do the right thing in supporting a well thought out parks plan. Part of that “well thought out plan” should be to project the cost into the improving township budget and be just as responsible towards citizens by earmarking the cost for parks within it. –Bud Meyers, Grand Blanc

Township

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