Board Meeting Minutes – November 12, 2019

  1. Supervisor Jager called the regular meeting of the Holton Township board to order at 7:02 pm at the Holton Township Hall, 6511 Holton Whitehall Road.
  2. Pledge of Allegiance given by all present.
  3. Roll Call of Board Members: Clerk Hippler, Treasurer Halbower, Trustee Jager, Trustee Schroeder, Supervisor Jager all present.
  4. Set Agenda
    • Chief Hawk was not present. Supervisor Jager suggested moving item 12A to the end of the New Business agenda and moving the subsequent items up accordingly. No objections. Agenda set with changes.
  5. Review Minutes
    • 110119 Trustee Jager made a motion to approve the minutes as written. Second by Treasurer Halbower. CARRIED
  6. Payment of Bills
    • 110219 Trustee Jager made a motion to approve the payment of the bills as presented. Second by Treasurer Halbower. CARRIED
  7. Business from the Floor
    • Commissioner Gary Foster- County Commissioners voted to remove grant writing from the process for receiving Senior Millage funds. The department managing the funds will work directly with township representatives to distribute money. Holton Township will receive approximately $8,000. Supervisor Jager asked Commissioner Foster about country’s stance on ORV ordinances. Commissioner Foster stated the county did not plan to pursue a countywide policy.
  8. Treasurer’s Report
    • 110319 Trustee Jager made a motion to approve the Treasurer’s report as presented. Second by Clerk Hippler. CARRIED
  9. Department Reports –
    • Library- Halloween events were very successful. The library had over 250 trick-or-treaters and parents on Halloween and a special guest Pete the Cat. The Christmas in the Park celebration is scheduled for December 4th and will feature Santa Claus and reindeer. Donations are being taken to help cover the cost.
    • Cemetery- New military plaques were installed at the Veteran’s Memorial. Full burials have been contracted to an outside company and has been going well. It frees up the DPW for other maintenance needs.
    • Ordinance, Permits, and Zoning reports presented in writing. Cedar Creek ongoing ordinance violations will likely move to the court for resolution.
    • Fire Department- Report unavailable.
  10. Correspondence
    • Letter from Muskegon County Road Commission- MCRC believe the township acted prematurely when passing its ORV ordinance and would like to meet with two board members to discuss ordinance and cooperation between Township and MCRC. Trustee Schroeder and Clerk Hippler offered to contact MCRC to discuss ordinance.
    • Letter from Muskegon County Solid Waste Management- Tipping fees for waste removal will rise from $27.50/ton to $29/ton.
    • Memo from Clerk Hippler- Clerk received petitions to prohibit recreational marijuana facilities in the township. Clerk will review signatures and keep board updated. Clerk also received returned refund check from 2018 Medical Marijuana Facility applicant with a request to void check from Treasurer Halbower. Treasurer Halbower stated that the auditor for the Township advised him to void the check to avoid a penalty from the state. Clerk Hippler stated that on applicant’s new license application for 2019 under “payment” it was written that applicant returned check to be used as payment for new application fees. Clerk Hippler was unsure of how to best handle uncashed check.
  11. Unfinished Business-None
  12. New Business
    • 110419- Trustee Jager made a motion to approve the purchase of IFSTA Fire and Emergency Services Instructor Manuals. Second from Trustee Schroeder. Discussion regarding price of materials was had, each copy was listed at $101.70. Trustee Jage made a motion to amend her motion to include the phrase “up to $250”. Second by Trustee Schroeder. Motion voted on as amended. CARRIED.
    • 110519- Treasurer Halbower made a motion to contribute $2,000 to Clark Cemetery for upkeep and maintenance. Second by Supervisor Jager. Trustee Jager was concerned over the lack of contract for Holton Township to provide funds for a cemetery not within the Township. Treasurer Halbower and Supervisor Jager stated there was a long standing agreement since mid-19th century that 4 townships would split the maintenance costs of the cemetery. Trustee Jager Requested a roll call vote: Supervisor Jager: Yes, Treasurer Halbower: Yes, Trustee Jager: No, Clerk Hippler: Yes, Trustee Schroeder: No. CARRIED.
    • 110619-Trustee Jager made a motion to approve furnace repairs to be completed by Bowen Heating and Cooling for $741.52. Second by Trustee Schroeder. CARRIED.
    • 110719-Trustee Jager made a motion to approve the Medical Marijuana Facility application from Damon Hooper. Second by Treasurer Halbower. Clerk Hippler questioned revenue projections presented; issue was commas in place of decimal points. Clerk Hippler questioned transportation of products between facilities. Applicant stated the state does not allow facilities to have a transporter license and it would be handled by a state licensed agency. Clerk Hippler questioned rent expenses; property is owned by applicant but rented by applicant for business. Clerk Hippler questioned property tax estimate of $8,000 and the approximate amount of tax revenue the township would see; applicant and representative estimated the township would see approximately $81,000 per license in revenue sharing. Clerk Hippler question commitment to business in Holton if recreation marijuana operation is prohibited: applicant is still committed and mainly interested in medical marijuana. Treasure Halbower asked how many employees applicant expects to employ: approximately 30-40 once established. Trustee Jager asked if applicant would seek employees from Holton Township; applicant stated he would if they were qualified. Supervisor Jager asked if applicant would benefit from state’s social equity tax breaks: applicant does not reside in township so would not qualify. Trustee Schroeder stated that applicants original application was denied because it did not meet zoning requirements. Trustee Schroeder stated she believes the changes made to remove zoning requirements for facilities so they could operate within the township undermined the vote of residents in May 2019. Trustee Jager stated that voters did not want zoning requirements as per the election results. Clerk Hippler stated that to claim voters were saying to the board they did not want zoning requirements for facilities was false and a deliberate misrepresentation by board members claiming such. Clerk Hippler stated that the intent of the voters was to not allow facilities to operate and she believed all board members understood that. Roll call vote: Treasurer Halbower: Yes, Supervisor Jager: Yes, Clerk Hippler: No, Trustee Schroeder: No, Trustee Jager: Yes. CARRIED.
    • RESOLUTION 11012019 Trustee Jager made a motion to approve the Resolution Regarding Township Attorney Services-Marijuana Related Matters. Second by Treasurer Halbower. Trustee Schroeder stated that members of the board were equal and should not have to go through supervisor for legal services related to the function of their job. Treasurer Halbower stated he would like to see a provision for board members to elect to speak to an attorney as a group. Clerk Hippler stated she required legal guidance to carry out her duties and those duties were occasionally restrained by strict deadlines She was also concerned that if the supervisor was the only member of the board to be able to contact the attorney, not all members of the board would receive necessary facts and information. Trustee Jager stated that the resolution was only for matters relating to marijuana. Supervisor Jager stated it was the advice of Attorney Kaufman to only use one attorney for clarity of advice. Treasurer Halbower and Supervisor Jager stated that if the clerk were to be sued, it would be Attorney Kuafman representing her, and that office should be the only one issues are brought to and that placing the authority with the supervisor will keep costs under control. Roll call vote: Clerk Hippler: No, Supervisor Jager: Yes, Trustee Jager: Yes, Trustee Schroeder: No, Treasurer Halbower: Yes. CARRIED.
    • 110819 Trustee Jager made a motion to remove Attorney Doug Hughes from marijuana matters. Second by Treasurer Halbower. Treasurer Halbower suggested the clerk discuss the issue with other clerks if she had questions. Roll call vote: Trustee Jager: Yes, Supervisor Jager: Yes, Trustee Schroeder: No, Clerk Hippler: No, Treasurer Halbower: Yes. CARRIED
    • 110919 Trustee Jager made a motion not to retain Attorney Doug Hughes at Garvis Law. Second by Supervisor Jager. Treasurer Halbower stated the township did not have any retainer paid to any attorney. He stated the letter also noted that without notice from the township by November 15, Attorney Hughes would assume the township elects to continue services. Trustee Jager stated she was not satisfied with the track record of Attorney Hughes’ office and that the office had cost the county millions of dollars. Supervisor Jager suggested the motion be tabled to look for alternatives. Clerk Hippler stated she would like to have ideas of possible alternatives before making a decision.
    • 111019 Clerk Hippler made a motion to table Trustee Jager’s motion to explore all options. Second by Trustee Schroeder. Yays 3, Nays, 2. TABLED.
  13. Future Business
    • Recreational Marijuana- Supervisor Jager stated he is working on a Recreational Marijuana Facilities Ordinance and will have it ready for board members by November 30. Trustee Schroeder stated that Holton Township is currently listed under “Opt-Out” with the state and any action should wait for the petition matter to be looked at. Supervisor Jager stated it will be on the agenda. Clerk Hippler stated she had received petitions against Recreational Marijuana operations and it would be prudent for the board to wait to pass any ordinance.
  14. 111119 Trustee Jager made a motion to adjourn the meeting at 8:15pm. Second by Treasurer Halbower. CARRIED.
  15. Respectfully submitted, Sarah Hippler Holton Township Clerk Unofficial until approved by Board.

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