The Austin Township Board Meeting was called to order on June 10, 2014 by Supervisor Kenneth Vredenburg at 7:37 p.m. at the Township Hall at 14132 Pierce Road, Stanwood, MI, 49346.

Present were: Kenneth Vredenburg, Elizabeth G Carr, Carolyn Towsley, John Brockway, and John Conforte. There was one guest present.

Minutes: Moved by Carolyn Towsley, supported by John Brockway to accept the minutes with correction. “Unfinished Business: 2. Assessor and Supervisor’s Report should read: The Tax Commission will be having meetings about Pollution Control and Devices with ANR. “ Motion carried with correction.

Financial Report: The Treasurer and Clerk balance in the Township General Account other than a $175.00 uncleared transaction and Accounts Receivable is still showing on the Balance Sheet even though it has already been added to the General Account. There will be $3.50 left in Accounts Receivable. That is Personal Property that needs to be collected. The Fire Department received $3119.00 back in Insurance repayment checks. The First Responders has a discrepancy of $116.00 from overpayment in the EFTPS tax payment. They received their first check from the County. The Cemetery is balanced. Moved by John Conforte, supported by Elizabeth G Carr to accept the Financial Report. Carried subject to audit.

Payment of the Bills: Moved by John Conforte, supported by Carolyn Towsley to approve the payment of Township check #’s 8243-8259 and Cemetery check #’s 1505-1506 and to present for review Fire Department check #’s 4916-4925 and First Responder check #’s 1433-1434. Motion carried.

Unfinished Business:

1.       Fire Department and First Responder Report: There were no reported injuries. Company officer training was completed by the end of May. The MFR training is complete. The new Grass Rig is in service. The pump for Tender 3-22 is back and was installed right after the meeting. The First Responders were commended for their quick reaction time and efficiency in their response to the fatal accident on the corner of 8 Mile and Northland Drive. The Regional Stress Management Team met with the Mecosta Austin Fire Department after the accident. The Fire Board approved the set up of a credit card for the Mecosta Austin Fire Department with a limit of $1,500.00. The same spending limits apply as have been previously approved. Anything over the approved spending limits must be submitted to the Fire Board Chairman for prior approval. The main purpose of the credit card is to remove the burden of spending personal cash for purchases. The Fire Chief and Fire Officers will have access to the card for non-ordered purchases. The credit card will be set up from their General Fund at Isabella Bank.

2.       Treasurer’s Report: The newsletter is done and delivered to the County. Moved by Kenneth Vredenburg, supported by Carolyn Towsley to appoint Megan Sgro as the new Deputy Treasurer. Motion carried.

3.       Clerk’s Report: The Walt Erickson Library will be hosting an Appreciation Reception on Wednesday, June 18, 2014 from 7-8 p.m. for all Township Board Members. There will be Election Inspector training here at Austin Township on July 30th from 2-5 p.m.

4.       Assessor and Supervisor’s Report: A letter was sent to the Planning Commission by the Supervisor stating that Austin Township feels the current description in the Master Plan is a good fit. Austin Township feels these changes to the Future Land Use Map would better suit the township: the commercial district on Pierce Road near 150th Ave should be eliminated. The Master Plan directs commercial activity to the west of Stanwood or the east of Canadian Lakes. Also it would be better for all Future Land Use Categories to make our easterly residential properties into one contiguous use, preferably Low Density Residential, instead of mixed low and medium low density. It is the opinion of the Austin Township lawyer, Eric Williams, that we are not liable for the taxes on the foreclosed properties, although it has not been tested in court. Moved by Carolyn Towsley, supported by John Brockway for Austin Township not to pay the fees on the 33 lots at Canadian Lakes at the direction of our legal counsel. Motion carried.


New Business:


1.       Hazardous Waste: Moved by Carolyn Towsley, supported by Kenneth Vredenburg to contribute $300.00 towards the hazardous waste clean-up collection. Motion carried.

2.       FYI: Casair will be putting up a tower on Buchanan Road. The Cemetery sign is not done yet.

3.       Roads: Moved by Kenneth Vredenburg, supported by John Conforte to accept the County Road Commission to gravel, shape, and ditch 9 Mile Road from 180th to 150th Avenue for the cost of $44,455.74. Motion carried.

4.       GIS: Moved by Carolyn Towsley, supported by John Brockway to participate in the GIS program with Mecosta County with the anticipated cost of $1,870.94. The funds to be taken from Capitol Outlay-Software. Motion carried.

5.       Cleaning: FYI-the Township will be switching custodial work at the hall from Johnny D Shetler Melvin Wheeler for the sum of $25.00 per cleaning.


Adjourned at 9:10 p.m.


Elizabeth G Carr



Austin Township Clerk