Banks Township Board Meeting
Monday, January 15, 2018
The meeting was called to order at 6:00 P.M. by Supervisor Thomas Mann. Present were Supervisor Mann, Clerk Donna Heeres, Trustee David Rasmussen and Trustee Tom Cooper. Treasurer Katy Postmus was absent. Also present: Deputy Clerk Tina Sundelius, Mark Groenink, Jerry Rasmussen, Sheriff Dan Bean and Julie Waterman. Supervisor Mann led the Pledge of Allegiance and gave the Invocation.
Public Comment: There was no public comment.
Minutes: The minutes of the December 18, 2017, regular Board Meeting were presented. MOTION was made by Cooper, seconded by Rasmussen, to approve the minutes. MOTION CARRIED.
Sheriff’s Report: Sheriff Bean presented the stats for December and all of 2017. He reported 2 new dispatchers have been hired, returning the department to full staffing. He advised that, to date, none of the 15 townships have opted in on the new marijuana regulations.
Fire Department: Chief Mark Groenink reported there was a good turnout at the annual Fireman’s Dinner held January 9 due to power outage on December 5. Retiring fireman Jim Veenstra was honored for 35 years of service. Supervisor Mann read the minutes of the Fire meeting held today with recommended items of replacement turnout gear. MOTION by Mann to approve the Fire Board’s recommendation to purchase the gear, for a total of $18,444.50. Rasmussen seconded, MOTION CARRIED. Chief advised the rescue vehicle should be replaced in 2018 and the department has a 1995 snowmobile with 187 miles and a small cutter on loan from the EJFD. Also, Adam VanStedum has returned to the area and rejoined the Fire Dept.
Township Hall: Jerry Rasmussen reported that the hall has been busy. He is going to start painting again and requested approval to repair the wall where the tables and chair carts have damaged the wall. Also, floor mats and a fan to use upstairs. Clerk will order floor mats and fan and Jerry will make the needed repairs. Discussion on the needs of the hall for the upcoming year was held, including roof and parking lot/driveway repairs and replacement of 80 blue chairs that are in poor condition.
Snowmobile Trail: Jerry reported on a meeting with the DNR and interest in the snowmobile trail returning to Ellsworth in 2019.
Treasurer’s Report: Heeres read the treasurer’s report on the incomes & balances for the month: General Fund Balance: $127,312.44 (Balance due from fire fund: $120,000.); Roads Fund: $31,638.33; Fire Fund: $117,433.86; Vehicle Fund: $91,662.04; Liquor Fund: $2002.00; Grand Total: $370,048.67. Bills represented by the attached list were reviewed for approval for payment. MOTION by Mann, seconded by Cooper, to approve the bills as presented. MOTION CARRIED.
Zoning Administrator’s Report: Heeres distributed the Zoning Administrators permit log for 2017 to the board. She noted the activity log also is needed for the Board to better understand the amount of work the ZA is experiencing.
Planning Commission: Trustee Cooper reported that the PC had one visitor at the last meeting who asked questions about the gravel pit on Six Mile Lake Road. Heeres and Clare are working on reformatting the ordinances so that they can be easily amended. PC member Steve Parafin shared his draft of Short Term Rental and Greenbelt guidelines and will amend following input from the PC. There will be a Public Hearing on February 6 to receive input on language revisions related to the Zoning Administrators duties. The PC discussed the recent Township Board adopted Public Comment policy and decided they didn’t need one. A draft Blight/Nuisance ordinance from the village was circulated. The village is interested in passing the ordinance and jointly hiring a blight enforcement officer. The ordinance will be sent to the PC for review and recommendations and the Breezeway Committee and East Jordan City will be contacted again concerning assistance in the search for a Blight Enforcement Officer.
Ambulance Authority: Julie Waterman reported that the Authority last met on December 20 and they are still working on their administrative policies. She reported that the Charlevoix Senior Center used to have a loan closet for medical furniture that closed about 4 months ago, the AA tried to pick up where they left off but were told by their insurance carrier not to open a loan closet. The Ambulance Association has stepped in to fill this vital need in the community. She reported that a good share of the meeting was consumed by budget adjustments and that the next meeting will discuss the building lease. The Administrative Assistant position is open due to resignation.
Breezeway Task Force: Heeres reported that the BTF met on January 9. It has come to her attention that Banks Township is no longer a member of the Chamber of Commerce; she recommended the township rejoin. Chamber news: annual dinner on the January 27, a new winery is opening at the Castle, the Pig Roast is hiring a director and Raven Hill will be hosting a Smithsonian exhibit opening in August. Also, the Task force is in the process of refurbishing the wayfinding signs. MOTION by Mann to renew Chamber membership at $220 per year, and have the Supervisor and Clerk represent Banks Township at the Annual Meeting on January 27; seconded by Cooper. MOTION CARRIED.
Correspondence: A Letter of Determination was received from FEMA re: 6521 Timberlake. The existing structures on this property have been determined to be outside of the flood zone while portions of the property remain in the flood zone. The map has been amended to reflect this. Opportunities for Planning and Zoning Training Workshops and BOR training were noted. Treasurer Postmus reported that her mother has researched the cemetery marker for a Civil War veteran and submitted a corresponding article to the Antrim Review. The MTA Conference is in April at Grand Traverse Resort; Board members are encouraged to attend.
Handicap Lift Contract: Mann thanked Rasmussen for his time spent researching the contract. Rasmussen reported that the “premium” contract option was the best for the Township. MOTION by Mann, seconded by Rasmussen, to approve the contract with A4Access for 3 years for $2100. MOTION CARRIED.
Sign for Hall: Heeres reported the sign in the front yard of the hall is in sad shape. She will investigate local sign companies and solicit proposals. It was agreed that the wooden sandblasted sign already there is a nice style for the building.
American Tower Proposal: Treasurer Postmus reported that American Tower is interested in a change in our contract on the tower in Atwood. A letter asking the township to extend the lease with 3 different options was received. Board consensus was for attorney review and recommendation before any decisions are made.
State Championship Football Team: Copies of the completed Proclamation of Achievement were circulated for signatures. The team will be invited to the February meeting for presentation.
Cemeteries: Dave Rasmussen reported a post on the vault building was broken by the snowplow and will need attention.
Next meeting Monday, February 19 at 6 PM.
The meeting was adjourned at 8:01 P.M
Donna L. Heeres, Banks Township Clerk