Voters will decide 2-mill proposal in August election

The issue is to fund fire, road, bicycle path and drain work.
Allegan County Road Commission crews work on culvert replacement on 145th Avenue east of 64th Street on Tuesday, May 7, 2024.

Laketown Township voters will decide on a 2-mill renewal for the fire department and infrastructure needs in the Aug.6 election.

The township board on Wednesday, May 8, 2024, put the Fire, Road, Bicycle Path and Drain Millage Renewal Proposition on the ballot.

If the millage renewal passes, it will bring in an estimated $1,198,000 to provide operating funds and equipment and apparatus acquisition funds for the Graafschap Fire Department, funds for the repair, construction, reconstruction and/or blacktopping of roads and bicycle paths and provide funds for the repair and maintenance of drains in the township.

“This year’s budget is dependent on this,” said township Manager Al Meshkin.

The board approved its budget in March for this fiscal year which runs April 1, 2024, through March 31, 2025.

Some board members want to study breaking apart future millage proposals, possibly having a separate millage for the fire department and another for the infrastructure of roads, drains and bike paths.

Supervisor Linda Howell likes the flexibility of having the issues together on one ballot. If drain work is needed, then money from the millage could be used for those repairs or, if bids for road work come in higher than expected, the money could be used there instead.

“That flexibility has great value,” she said.

Meshkin advised the board to examine the best approach for the election in 2026.

The August election includes primary races for state, county and local offices as well.

This year’s projects

The money from the millage is helping fund two projects recently approved by the board.

On Wednesday, the board unanimously approved spending about $526,000 to have the Allegan County Road Commission resurface 3.01 miles of 145th Avenue from 66th Street to 60th Street, and 0.47 mile of 61st Street from 147th Avenue to 32nd Street. The City of Holland will pay about $51,000 for the work inside its borders.

The work will be done this season by Michigan Paving and Materials Co., the low bidder for the project.

In April, the board approved spending $51,700 for the replacement of a culvert on 145th Avenue before the repaving starts.

Other business

In other business, the board:

  • Finished listening to presentations from nonprofit organizations seeking funds through contracted services. The board will decide which contracts to approve in June.
  • Accepted the resignation from the planning commission of Richard Becker who has served on the commission since 2018. Howell will have recommendations at the June meeting for his replacement.