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Banks Township Board Meeting

Monday, July 18, 2016

  1. The meeting was called to order at 6 P.M. by Supervisor Thomas Mann. Present were Supervisor Mann, Clerk Donna Heeres, Treasurer Katy Postmus, Trustee David Rasmussen and Trustee Tom Cooper. Also present: Don Miles, Jerry Rasmussen, and Hugh Campbell. Andy Veenstra arrived at 6:09 pm. Supervisor Mann led the Pledge of Allegiance and gave the Invocation.

  2. Public Comment: Don Miles addressed the Board inquiring why is Brant Road being fixed at the Old Dixie Highway end? He stated that the seasonal portion of the road needs a lot more attention. Supervisor will contact ACRC to see if they can identify the needs along the road and give a recommendation for necessary repairs. Mr. Miles stated he appreciates the efforts to amend the (Afton Stone) slime on Lakeshore Drive. However, “The ditching is abysmal.” Standing water in new ditches as well as “looks a mess”. He asked to have an ad hoc committee appointed to study options and present a recommendation to the board.

  3. Public Comment: Hugh Campbell reported on the Village Water Project, stating it is almost complete with new water meters to all customers. The DTE Energy pipeline installations are progressing. The House on the Hill and Rowe Inn are asking for consideration of an extension that would include their businesses. Damaged asphalt within the Village will be repaired by the pipeline contractors. The Bridge Street culvert is being investigated by individuals to attempt to have it replaced. The Summer Recreation Program was hugely successful thanks to the efforts of director Sarah Essenberg. The Minor B team won the league championship and another team was in the finals! The Village has passed a resolution to hold a public hearing (August 8) on the establishment of a Downtown Development Authority. The Village is using the ParPlan grant monies to install two security cameras at the pavilion and one at the Community Square. The one at the CS will be connected to the township hall system along with the exterior camera overlooking the parking lot/dumpster area that the township authorized last month. The Village has applied for a grant to fund an update of the Joint Recreation Plan for Banks Township and Village of Ellsworth. Pleasant Hill Drive is being paved today and the extension of this road within the Village limits was authorized to be paved along with it but due to time constraints of the contractors, the Village portion will be paved at a later time. The Village will hold a Public Hearing on an amendment to their zoning ordinance that would regulate Medical Marijuana dispensaries within the Village. The Village recently purchased a new/used street sweeper. An assessment of access sites on the Chain of Lakes underway by Paddle Antrim to identify amenities.

  4. Minutes: The minutes of the June 20, 2016, regular Board Meeting were presented. MOTION by Cooper, seconded by Rasmussen to approve the minutes amending Item 3 and clarifying bullet 4 related to Lakeshore Drive. MOTION CARRIED.

  5. Planning Commission: Trustee Cooper reported on the three public hearings conducted by the Planning Commission last week. The proposed Greenbelt amendment has been sent to the Antrim County Planning Commission for review. The proposed garage sales amendment was decided to not be needed. The public awareness of complaints is expected to correct any complaints. The proposed Short Term Rentals amendment was tabled for more discussion. Public comments on both sides of the issue were invaluable and will be considered by the PC when discussing further regulations. He reported that a property owner has requested a variance to the ordinance to allow construction of a pole building 10 ft from a rear property line in an Ag zone where 25 ft is required. This application will be forwarded to the ZBA for public hearing. (on August 8 @ 7 PM: Clerk added).

  6. Zoning Administrator: Andy Veenstra reported 3 permits have been issued in the past 2 months: a greenhouse, a deck/screened in porch and a garage addition. He is working on action on illegal parking of vehicles: one at a towing business and one that looks like a junk yard in a residential area. Suggestions for contacting the property owners were given. Clerk reported discussion at the recent E+A committee meeting that grants are available for blight enforcement officer funding and potential for said officer to be appointed by several neighboring municipalities.

  7. Township Hall: Jerry Rasmussen reported that township hall rentals are down. Wedding receptions scheduled for August 20 and October 15. He asked for a new 84 chair upright cart to be ordered. Also, floor mat for the new front entry. He plans to complete the painting project as time permits. He asked for permission to obtain bids for duct work cleaning. Building Renovations: David Rasmussen reported the final plumbing inspection is due this week and then the final building inspection can be completed. The insulation project is ready to be done. Will get specs and clerk will advertise for bids. The parking lot is in need of sealant. The gable ends of the building have paint chipping and should be fixed by fall. Mortar is chipping out, especially on the chimney.

  8. Snowmobile Trail: Jerry Rasmussen reported a meeting with the DNR is scheduled soon to likely close the trail to Charlevoix permanently. The groomer then will not go past East Jordan unless additional miles can be added beyond Ellsworth. He is working towards a trail to Atwood and Eastport as business owners have expressed an interest in this.

  9. Bridges: Clay Pit Bridge is not passable for heavy trucks and therefore not being plowed by the snowplow. Supervisor & Clerk will draft a letter of concern to ACRC regarding the state of this bridge and also the need to replace the culvert at Bridge Street with a more suitable bridge.

  10. The treasurer’s report of incomes and balances was given. General Fund Balance: $208,607.83 with $150,000 due from the Fire Fund; Fire Fund Balance: $110,618.59; Roads Fund Balance: $78,121.03; Vehicle Fund Balance: $90,353.17; Liquor Fund Balance: $967.75; Grand Total: $488,668.37.

  11. Bills represented by the attached list were presented for approval for payment. MOTION was made by Rasmussen, seconded by Postmus, to pay the bills as presented. MOTION CARRIED.

  12. Correspondence: Thank you card from Chester & Shirley Farrell for the opportunity to speak at the Planning Commission Public Hearing on July 12. MTA Workshop on Creating a Vision for Your Township and Linking with the Community to be held September 8 in Frankenmuth. Sheriff Report of 911 calls (70) for month of June was reviewed. Information regarding establishment of a DDA for Atwood was received. Letter of map amendment (removal from flood plain) for a parcel on Simmons Bluff Drive was received from FEMA. Letter from Michigan Dept of Treasury regarding audit report for fiscal year 2016 was received and response from supervisor & clerk will be drafted. Letter of appreciation received from the Pig Roast Committee for support of the festival and the Fire Dept’s water slide event and Pig Pen Challenge obstacle course. Letter from the ParPlan Risk Reduction Grant Reimbursement Program (along with check for $4500 for purchase of camera security system for township hall) encouraging continued participation in the grant program. The Par Plan Newsletter was shared. Letter from MPSC regarding resumption of handling complaints on video/cable issues. Newsletter from Tip of the Mitt Watershed Council was shared. Invitation from Networks North to apply for grant funding for crowd funding and partnership planning program support was reviewed.

  13. Roads: Estimate of costs for just over 1 mile of preparation and paving of Lakeshore Drive was received from the ACRC. Pavement would be 18 ft wide and 1 ft gravel shoulders on either side. Total estimated cost is $217,000 with the Township’s share of $205,000. Supervisor is drafting a letter to be sent to all Lakeshore Drive property owners explaining options for resolution of problems with the roadway. Supervisor has also spoken with GLE representative about need for relocation of electrical poles etc. Trustee Rasmussen commented that board members need to be cautious when approving committee recommendations without first doing “our homework”. Supervisor Mann commented that the ACRC and Antrim County Commissioners need to be aware of the dissatisfaction with the work done on LSD and insist upon a better fix. A letter will be drafted.

  14. Twp Hall Emergency Generator Hookups: Clerk reported the contractor who has done the hookups for the Antrim County Emergency Services generator will be contacting us to obtain a proposal for the work. We can then submit a grant application to the Par Plan for assistance.

  15. PPT Form: Treasurer Postmus completed this newly required form for the Dept of Treasury. Banks Township uses 10% of its General Fund for funding of emergency operations within the township.

  16. Downtown Development Authority: The E+A Committee has recommended the Township establish a DDA for Atwood. Discussion of procedures and potential benefits was held. The Board asked for more information to be provided at the next meeting.

  17. Election Inspectors: Clerk presented a roster of inspectors for the August 2 Primary Election. She noted there are 5 new inspectors who are being trained. Still a shortage of Democratic party preference inspectors. MOTION Postmus, seconded by Rasmussen, to approve the election commission’s appointments of election inspectors. CARRIED.

  18. July Board of Review: Scheduled to meet at 4:30 PM on Tuesday, July 19.

  19. Pre-Buy of LP: MOTION Mann, seconded by Rasmussen, to pre-buy 1000 gallons of propane for the Atwood Fire Hall for the next heating season. CARRIED.

  20. Traverse City to Charlevoix Bicycle Trail: Motion to adopt Resolution #7 of 2016 to support the development of the TC to Charlevoix trail connecting the TART trail in Acme Township to the Lake to Lake Trail in the City of Charlevoix was offered by Heeres, seconded by Postmus. Discussion was held. Concern was voiced over the crossing of Whiskey Creek in Norwood Township. This concern will be voiced to the committee. Roll Call Vote: Rasmussen: Yes; Cooper: No; Mann: Yes; Postmus: Yes; Heeres: Yes. RESOLUTION #7 OF 2016 was declared adopted. The complete resolution is an attachment to these minutes.

  21. PA 116: Application was submitted by Thomas Cooper for a 47-acre parcel in section 19 R8W of Banks Township. The application has been sent to the Antrim County Conservation District and Antrim County Planning Commission for review. The Banks Township Board will take action on this application at the August 22 meeting.

22. Public Comment: There was no further Public Comment.

23. Next meeting August 22 at 6 PM.

24. The meeting was adjourned at 9:10 P.M.

Respectfully submitted,



Donna L. Heeres, Banks Township Clerk