Call to Order
The Charlevoix Township Board meeting was called to order by Supervisor Center with Board Members Christiansen, Williams and Witherspoon present. Rajewski absent.
The minutes of the regular January 14, 2019 Board meeting were accepted.
The financial report was given by Treasurer Williams. As of the end of February, the General Fund was at $661,611.00; Water Fund $119,027.34; the Fire Department $50,203.42; Trust and Agency 3,007.97; Fire Department Construction Fund (Bond Money) $1,845,182.41; and the Fire Department Tax Account (the account the tax money goes into) $143,336.10.
Water Department: None (Dan Riley is studying for water department tests)
Fire Department: Dan Thorp stated that the dive team needs buoys and a backboard floating device and a few other things with a total cost of approximately $1,000. It was noted that the money is in the budget.
Public Comments: None
New Marijuana Law
Attorney Harry Golski discussed the nuances of the new law and whether the Township needs to take action. The medical marijuana law is established. The big change is the recreational marijuana law. There are several pitfalls to be on the lookout for. The Michigan Township Association and LARA has taken the position that a municipality does not have to do anything to be opted out of the law. The law provides that a local unit of government may take an affirmative step and say either 1) they do not want a facility in our unit or 2) they are willing to accept certain types and amounts of establishments. If the municipality does nothing, the citizenry can file a petition and have it placed on the local ballot. If the Township does nothing and if LARA receives an properly completed application, they are required to send it to the local unit of government, who has ninety days to get back to LARA to approve/deny license. If there is nothing on the books right now and someone files an application, the Township will have to complete a detailed examination/investigation of the applicant, looking into police records, banking records, criminal convictions, drug abuse, etc. If the municipality were to deny the license application without a good reason, it would leave the municipality open to a lawsuit. Mr. Golski stated that unless the Township has the mechanisms to conduct the required investigation, the safest and easiest thing for the Township would be to opt out. The Township could opt in the future. It was discussed how to reconcile the fact of the Township voters who voted for medical marijuana and then having the Board decide to opt out. Mr. Golski’s recommendation would be take a hands off approach to see what happens. Once you opt in and someone gets a license, that license is valid and cannot be taken away, if you decide later to opt out. He further recommends a review of the current medical marijuana ordinance.
The matter was tabled until the Board receives further information.
Public Comment: If the Township opted in could they change and opt out later. Harry explained that it could be changed although you could not take away a vested right to any currently valid license. The potency cap of the marijuana, the increase in insurance and other expenses, the regulation of the proposed businesses and if the Township has a drug free policy and a medical
marijuana ordinance was brought up. It was suggested using language other local ordinance’s for our ordinance. Mr. Golski commented that is was a simple one page ordinance to draft. Dr. Stewart discussed his belief of the benefits of medical marijuana vs. using opioids.
Supervisor Updates: Next month Performance Engineers will be here to review instructions on how to use new water meters.
Correspondence: Received thank you from the Charlevoix Community Skate Park Christianson made the motion, with Williams supporting, to allow the Clerk to pay bills presented. Motion carried unanimously. (M-06-19)
Public Comment: A local bidders preference policy was discussed. Mr. Golski spoke with Mr. Hydlouff at the City of Charlevoix about their local bidder policy. They have found placing the language that “the city reserves the right to accept or reject any bid for any reason” works better than a local bidder preference policy.
The price difference of water and sewer between the Township and City was discussed. It was suggested that the matter be reviewed with the City, especially as to how it effects Township residents.
The meeting adjourned at 7:52p.m.