Road millage up for vote

BY KIRSTEN ISBELL
Clarkston News Intern Writer
Voters will decide if Independence Township collects $3.2 million for road repair.
The Road Infrastructure Improvement Millage proposal on the Nov. 6 ballot would levy a new millage of up to two mills for four years to fix 28 miles on 11 roads in the township.
“This is a workable solution,” said township Supervisor Pat Kittle. “I truly think our residents deserve better than this. Call after call after call came in on Feb. 23 about blown out tires and car damage from potholes. Something has to change.”
The township considered a road millage in 2016, but Kittle was not in favor of it at the time.
“If we go ahead and try to take care of our local roads now with a local road millage, we will definitely shoot ourselves in the foot with future road repair funding,” Kittle said in August 2015.
The new plan addresses those concerns, he said.
“With this, they are trying to change their business model to do what needs to be done,” he said. “The reality is we have to be proactive.”
The new plan includes 28 miles of road, instead of 22 miles. The Road Commission of Oakland County (RCOC) is contributing construction and design engineering, which is estimated to be about $4.5 million.
“RCOC contributing to these road repairs is a big help because back in 2015, the township was going to be doing this project without any help,” Kittle said.
The township is still providing $12 million through the millage, and has partnered with RCOC to perform annual maintenance, he said.
“What the millage means for Independence Township residents if voted through, the township will be able to work with the RCOC to fix the roads now,” he said.
The proposal includes parts of Sashabaw, Clintonville, Waldon, Maybee, Clarkston, White Lake, Andersonville, Holcomb, Flemings Lake, Walters, and Eston roads. It would collect $2 per $1,000 of taxable value on all taxable property in the township, an estimated $3,167,648 in the first year.
Based on the average home value and the average taxable value, it would increase the average homeowner taxes by $223.