Library drops out of CIA funding

BY JESSICA STEELEY
Clarkston News Staff Writer

Clarkston Independence District Library Board voted unanimously, Oct. 16, to drop out of the Corridor Improvement Authority (CIA) plan to widen Sashabaw Road from Flemings Lake Road to Clarkston Road.
The decision is expected to cost about $250,000 out of the $7.2 million project, said township Supervisor Pat Kittle.
“The $3 million or so we are anticipated to collect with the CIA modification, this would have counted for less than 10 percent of that,” Kittle said.
Michele Ginn, vice president of the Clarkston Independence District Library Board, said there was only a 60-day window for them to opt out of the plan after the Independence Township Board’s public hearing on the CIA on Aug. 22.
“The window was so narrow to opt in or opt out, there really wasn’t time to explore everything in the amount of time,” Ginn said. “We really need more time to look at the larger picture.”
The township will continue to look for funding sources to complete the road project. Currently funding comes from a combination of state, county, township and private business funds, as well as the CIA plan, Kittle said.
“The county thought it was important enough to modify the CIA and to agree to the terms and conditions because of the benefits that the economic development would bring to the community,” he said.
Ginn said they have no definite plan regarding the CIA right now, but there are other options as well, such as shared revenue options.
“Opting in can happen at any time, so the library’s attorney recommended that the Library Board opt out at this time to provide a greater opportunity to fully research and consider all options,” she added.