White Lake Capital Improvement Plan Accepted By Township Board

The annual White Lake plan includes several "wish list" projects, such as park updates and township hall renovations, that are not likely to happen for several years, according to township officials.

The White Lake Township Board of Trustees met Tuesday night to discuss several items, including the 2013-2018 Capital Improvement Plan. The plan, a mandate from the state, is a "wish list" of projects identified by departments in the township for future consideration. The board's acceptance of the plan does not mean the projects will be completed.

"Because we have water and sewer systems, we are required to submit a Capital Improvement Plan each year," Community Development Director Sean O'Neil said. "These projects are ranked in order of importance and projected for the next six years. It's important to note that these are not necessarily projects we are seeking funding for, rather, projects we've identified as important to the community should the funding be made available at any point in time in the future."

Some of the projects are very feasible, such as small improvements to the township's parks, while others are more "pie-in-the-sky" type projects, O'Neil said.

"Several of the projects on the list are ones that have been included since we first started doing these in 2009, because there is no funding for these projects, and we don't intend for there to be, we keep pushing them back," O'Neil said.

Those types of projects include a $1 million renovation to the current township hall, or the replacement of two fire stations and the building of a new fire station.

Trustee Mike Powell said he was concerned that future boards might take the current board's acceptance of the plan as a green light for some of the projects.

O'Neil and Supervisor Greg Baroni explained that, should any project from the plan be brought to the board, it must go through the normal process, have a plan in place, funding identified, and then be approved by the township board prior to any action being taken.

"These are simply recommendations by the departments in the township that call out potential needs. The township is not bound by this document," O'Neil said.

Other items approved at the meeting include:

  • The first reading of ordinance 129 – an amendment to the current fee schedule ordinance. This ordinance sets the fees for several items, including the administration fee the township charges for the administration of special assessment districts. The old administration fee was 10 percent. In the amended ordinance, the fee has been lowered to 5 percent, with a cap at $5,000 per year for each special assessment district. The amendment must be read a second time prior to approval and implementation.
  • The board approved bids to clean up a property on Tower Road. O'Neil stated that the township was given authority to clean the property by a judge, and the township will contract with Milford Salvage for $3,500 to remove junk and debris from the yard. O'Neil said the property owner will be billed, and if he does not pay, the total cost will be placed on the owners tax roll. 
Alice Kramden September 19, 2012 at 01:28 PM
I wonder which board member had the brilliant idea to turn the board meeting into a political campaign for some Oakland County Judges. It makes one wonder what these judges were thinking and do we really want judges that take advantage of The White Lake Board meeting to foster their own agendas Just saying
Laura Vogel September 19, 2012 at 05:20 PM
I agree, Alice, I found it extremely distasteful especially since there are others who are running also for judge whom were not invited. If the township board wishes to host a "meet the candidates" night, I think that would be a great thing, actually. But to simply permit a chosen few candidates to appear, without being on the agenda so that opposing candidates could have also appeared and spoken (e.g.) during the "public comment" portion of the meeting... sorry, but that stinks of crony politics.
Laura Vogel September 19, 2012 at 05:27 PM
Will the multi-year Capital Improvement Plan, just endorsed at last night's meeting, be available for the citizens to read? Will it be available on the internet? I wasn't able to find any of the past years' (if any) CIPs on the www.WhiteLakeTwp.com site, so perhaps I am either looking in the wrong place or they are not available? It would be helpful to see, for example, what was on last year's CIP to compare to this year's CIP and to also compare past year CIPs to what has been actually budgetted for and completed. If the CIP is merely "pie in the sky" and does not inform what ends up in the actual budget, it seems like the whole CIP exercise is probably not a good use of our employees' limited time and resources.
Brooke Tajer September 19, 2012 at 05:31 PM
It is in the right hand column here: http://www.whitelaketwp.com/planning.asp and the CIP is required by state law. It's completely separate from the township budget process.
Brooke Tajer September 19, 2012 at 05:33 PM
Left hand I mean :)
Laura Vogel September 19, 2012 at 05:41 PM
thanks, Brooke, when I looked last night for last year's, I didn't find anything. It looks like they were speedy on posting this year's some time this morning!


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