Township budgets approved

BY JESSICA STEELEY
Clarkston News Staff Writer

Independence Township Board reviewed and approved 2018 budgets for the Park, Recreation & Seniors Department, General Corridor Improvement Plan, the Cemetery Corridor Improvement Plan and the General Fund.
Director Derek Smith presented the 2018 Parks, Recreation & Seniors (PRS) budget to the board at the July 25 meeting. For the recreation division, revenues decreased $30,571 or 4.6 percent, labor cost decreased $40,871 or 5 percent, operating/ capital costs increased $2,251 or 0.6 percent and the budget overall decreased $8,049 or 1.5 percent.
For the parks division revenues increased $22,000 or 16.8 percent, labor costs increased $2,245 or 0.4 percent, operating/capital costs decreased $27,102 or 9.1 percent and the budget overall decreased $46,857 or 6.3 percent.
The senior division revenues increased $17,016 or 5 percent, labor costs increased $70,800 or 18.1 percent, operating/capital costs decreased $8,172 or 3.1 percent and the budget overall increased $45,612 or 14.5 percent.
Budget and Operation Analyst Rick Yaeger presented the other three budgets. The General Corridor Improvement Plan (CIP) has future spending laid out to be $1,723,000 divided three ways – $1,596,000 for PRS, $47,000 for street lighting, and $80,000 for town hall.
The Cemetery CIP plans to spend $68,500 in 2018 with $13,500 for a rear discharge mower, $20,000 for new signs at Lakeview Cemetery, $25,000 for a main gate replacement and $10,000 for a fencing/ landscaping barrier. The only planned expense for 2019 is $15,000 for the north gate repair.
In the planned General Fund budget for 2018 revenues are decreasing $145,223 or 2.3 percent, 2018 Labor & Benefits are increasing $25,806 or 1.1 percent, and Operating/Capital costs are decreasing $1,711,455 or 31.1 percent.

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The Independence Township Board voted, July 25, to approve an agreement for professional engineering services, for up to $18,380.
The engineering services will help the township complete their Water Supply Asset Management Plan. Completion of this plan is required by the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality and must be implemented by Jan. 1, 2018.

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The Township Board approved and set a public hearing for Tuesday, Aug. 22, to discuss extending the Corridor Improvement Authority’s district’s Tax Increment Finance from 2020 to 2029. The extension won’t increase taxes for anyone in the district.
Funds from the extension will go towards the last phase of the Corridor Improvement Plan, which is the widening of North Sashabaw Road from Flemings Lake to Clarkston Road.

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The township trustees approved a vehicle agreement at their July 25 meeting for the Parks, Recreation and Seniors department to receive three new buses from the Suburban Mobility Authority for Regional Transport.
“We’ll be getting three new buses to help with the transportation of our seniors and within the community,” Township Supervisor Pat Kittle said.