After years of negotiating, a Police Officers Labor Council Command Contract has been approved by the Van Buren Township Board of Trustees.
At its regular meeting on Sept. 18, the board voted unanimously to approve the contract that runs from Jan. 1, 2010 to Dec. 31, 2013.
The POLC Command Unit members had previously approved the contract.
Public Safety Director Carl McClanahan and Treasurer Sharry Budd worked on the negotiating committee. Budd was not present at the Sept. 18 meeting, and Director McClanahan presented the proposal to the board.
In other business at the Sept. 18 meeting, the board:
• Approved Supervisor Paul White’s reappointment of Ronald Merrit II to the Environmental Commission, with a term to expire Oct. 1, 2015;
• Approved Supervisor White’s reappointments of Donald Boynton and Carl Johnson to the Planning Commission with terms to expire Oct. 1, 2015;
• Approved Supervisor White’s reappointments of Marian Caldwell, Harold Gant, Helen Wylie, Edwin Seyfried, Jane Kovach, and Carol Dolph to the Cultural Advisory Committee with terms to expire Oct. 1, 2013. The board also extended the committee’s work for another year;
• Approved Wade Trim’s proposal of $42,800 to provide plans and specifications for replacement of three sewer pump stations: Haggerty at Robbe (which serves 17 homes), Ryznar (29 homes) and North Shore (17 homes). The project is expected to cost about $500,000. In the future they will work on Parkwood, Harbour Club, and Beckley stations;
• Removed from the agenda a proposed contract with Davenport Brothers for installation of a handicap-access walking/bike path and permanent picnic areas at Van Buren Park, because of problems perceived by board members with the bidding and contract. The only other bidder was Blue Ribbon, who was low bidder and also is a local company. Andrew Burns, deputy director of Parks and Recreation, said he would rework the project. Wayne County has offered a $40,000 grant for the work;
• Heard Trustee Al Ostrowski say the board passed a motion concerning the co-generation plant at Visteon at its last meeting and the attorney said it wasn’t a good motion. Ostrowski crumpled up the attorney’s opinion and threw it off the board table to show his distain. Trustee Denise Partridge had asked for the co-generation item to be placed on that evening’s agenda as old business, but Supervisor Paul White refused. White said it was the attorney’s opinion that the motion was unacceptable and the board can’t interfere in planning commission business. “Out of courtesy to the board it should have been removed,” Partridge said, referring to the item on the planning commission agenda that the board wanted removed, which was not removed but voted upon and passed. White replied that the planning commission voted on the item and so there’s no longer an issue. Partridge said the public has some issues to discuss and White said issues can be discussed, but there’s nothing the board can do about the decision and “There’s no unfinished business”;
• Discussed Aerotropolis and whether it is worth the $25,000 per year the Downtown Development Authority is paying so the township can belong. Supervisor White said the Wayne County Aerotropolis name is expected to be changed to Vantage Port shortly to separate it from the three other Aerotropoli in the state. DDA Executive Director Susan Ireland said the DDA will discuss the matter. John Delaney called the Aerotropolis project “a Ponzi scheme”;
• Heard Public Safety Director Carl McClanahan introduce VBT’s newest police officer William Kirkland. He said Officer Kirkland has an associate’s degree in criminal justice, spent eight months as a dispatcher for Dearborn Heights PD, and worked briefly as an officer for the Huron Clinton Metroparks; and
• Listened to about 90 minutes of public comment from 17 speakers. During this part of the meeting, Supervisor White recessed the meeting for 10 minutes, so police could arrest Delaney on charges of disturbing the meeting. Delaney was ticketed, and did not return to the meeting.
At the work/study session on Sept. 17, the board heard Michael Dotson, chairman of the VBT Local Development Finance Authority, tell the board there is a resolution the LDFA passed with recommendations for action in the case of the Visteon bonds.
He said the LDFA wants to be together with the township board step by step trying to avoid potential pitfalls with the Visteon bonds. The board went into executive session on Sept. 17 to discuss with its attorney the LDFA resolution, but Dotson was not in that meeting.