By Rosemary K. Otzman
At its regular meeting on March 25 the Sumpter Township Board of Trustees voted unanimously to purchase $7,825.18 worth of Class A uniforms for the fire department.
The uniform purchase is in the fire department’s new union contract. The purchase includes 24 blue and eight white shirt uniforms.
In a related matter, the board approved the hiring of Nathan Cornwall of Huron Township as an on-call fire fighter. Cornwall carries certifications needed to represent the township on the HazMat Urban Search and Rescue team. The township was penalized $3,000 for not having a US&R representative.
Also, Fire Chief Joseph Januszyk said he has found a defibrillator at $1,295 for the senior center, but he is checking further with HVA to see if he can get a better price.
In other business at its March 25 meeting, the board:
• Approved the 2014-15 township insurance coverage by Burnham & Flower for $123,307, up from last year’s figure of $120,635;
• Approved a fireworks display by Great Lakes Fireworks at the Sumpter Country Festival on May 25, with a rain date of May 26;
• Approved purchasing five digital dash cams for police vehicles from Digital Ally at a cost of $8,415. Police Captain Eric Luke explained that because of the lapel cameras the police now wear they are able to update the old dash cams with models that have fewer “bells and whistles” and therefore are less expensive. The present dash cams are 10 years old and starting to fail. Burnham and Flower Insurance gave a grant to the police for their wearable cameras;
• Approved a resolution to get the $20,000 approved last July by Wayne County for a parks grant;
• Heard a report on representatives of the Belleville Area District Library Board coming to meet with township officials earlier that day to discuss a lease for part of the community center for a satellite library if the millage passes in August. Board members approved having officials negotiate a lease and to verify the figures presented for the upgrades. The library would like a lease agreement by May. Mary Ban asked how much in library tax Sumpter taxpayers send to the library and she was told $201,000;
• Heard a report from Police Det. John Toth on work he has been doing to modify the medical marijuana ordinance to make it more suitable for the township. He said he is adding suggested changes from the building department on zoning. He told of an unregistered marijuana grower outside the scope of state law that needed an immunity agreement so the township could get his testimony in an attempted-murder trial. He said this case cost the Sumpter police, the Michigan State Police, the U.S. Marshalls, and Oklahoma narcotics officers a lot of time and money. All this was caused by “another marijuana grower not following the rules,” Toth said;
• Heard Young announce that there is a new revenue-enhancing program in the police department, suggested by Det. Toth. The department will be running its own forfeitures with the funds going to Sumpter for police operations instead of to the Wayne County Prosecutor’s office; and
• Was reminded the Children’s Easter Party will start at noon on Saturday, April 12 at Graham Park. The Easter Bunny is expected to attend.
By Rosemary K. Otzman