Thursday, December 2, 2021

Playing it safe

Happiest time of the year is also the most dangerous

It's is the most wonderful time of the year, and also the most dangerous, according to national safety experts who have issued warnings to shoppers, decorators and everyone else about taking safety precautions during the holiday season.

Safety is an issue that burns as brightly as the most extravagantly decorated tree during  the holidays, experts said, when families gather, parties are scheduled and travel spikes. While the holidays looked a lot different last year due to the pandemic, and the news of a recently-discovered, more virulent variant was announced this week, caution should be the norm, they advised, and there are many dangers associated with the season.

Residents continue to protest school superintendent’s leave

The return of Romulus Superintendent of Schools Dr. Benjamin Edmondson continues to foment turmoil among the divided members of the board of education.

The issue has become so contentious that a regular meeting of the board members Nov. 22 was suspended after less than 15 minutes when the trustees could not agree on accepting the agenda for the evening proceedings. A motion by Trustee Ursula Wester to add the reinstatement of Edmondson and the 10-day notice of termination to interim Superintendent Sean McNatt to the agenda failed on a 3-3 vote with Trustee Nichole German absent from the meeting.

Wester made the same motion before the evening proceedings began and it failed by the same 3-3 vote.

Toys for Tots applications due by Dec. 8.

Inkster residents are being urged to register for the annual Toys for Tots holiday gift program. The deadline to register for help is Dec. 8 and all applications must be mailed to Post Office Box 0884, Inkster MI 48141.

In Inkster, more information and instructions of downloading an application are available from  Wakii Adams at (734) 258-2083.

The local Toys for Tots also provides holiday toy donations to residents in Belleville,  Wayne, Romulus, Westland, Sumpter Township, and Van Buren Township, in addition to Inkster.

Tickets for holiday Taste Fest now available

Tickets for the Westland Holiday Taste Fest are now on sale but are limited.

The annual charity event will take place from 6 until 8:30 p.m. Dec. 7 at the Hellenic Cultural Center.

The $25 admission ticket includes food from area restaurants and culinary artists featuring special treats and holiday displays. The traditional auction and raffles will also take place featuring prizes in the live auction, the You Pick raffle, a 50/50 drawing and Bucket of Cheer raffles.

Live music will be provided by the Marsha Gayle Band and emcees for the event will be Ralph and Kim Cabildo.

Veterans meal program helps 300 local families

Wayne Mayor John Rhaesa, Westland Mayor Bill Wild
and Wayne Ford Civic League President Vic Barra celebrate
the success of the meal program for veterans this year.
The 8th annual free holiday meals for Wayne-Westland veterans, surviving spouses, and families of active-duty service members distributed more than 300 full Thanksgiving meals to local families.

Westland Mayor William R. Wild, Wayne Mayor John P. Rhaesa, Wayne-Ford Civic League President Vic Barra, elected officials and nearly a hundred volunteers expressed their gratitude and thanked the men, women and families who have served in the military as they distributed the boxed groceries. 

The groceries and supplies for a full-family meal were packaged and loaded into cars and trucks along with a huge turkey for the traditional Thanksgiving feast.

Westland man charged in death of elderly client

A Westland man is facing first-degree murder charges in the death of an elderly man for whom he served as a caretaker.

Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy has charged Nassim Moustapha Messelmani, 30, of Westland, in connection with the fatal shooting of Edward McClendon, 72, of Detroit. Messelmani was the in-home caregiver for McClendon.

Messelmani was charged after Detroit police officers were dispatched to a residence in the 19710 block of Robson Street at about 11:30 a.m. Nov. 18 after reports of a shooting. When officers arrived at the scene, they discovered the victim face down on the kitchen floor with a gunshot wound to his head and stab wounds to his stomach and chest. 

Resident seeks more accessible area restrooms

The lack of public comfort conveniences brought one resident to the most recent meeting of the Romulus City Council.

Keilani Hadden spoke to the members of the city council to ask their help in accommodating the public with “clean, open restrooms in restaurants” in local businesses, particularly gas stations and restaurants. While Hadden said that Romulus usually does have provisions for the comfort of the public, the lack of such facilities is a real problem in rural areas, particularly those serving Black communities. 

Romulus council OK’s purchase of 2 CPR machines

The Romulus Fire Department will soon have some extra help when patients in distress need cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).

Members of the city council approved the purchase of two new automated CPR devices for the fire department use in emergency situations after seeing a demonstration of the device. 

“This is basically an extra set of hands for firefighters when we are on one of our most intensive calls,” explained Fire Chief Ken Krause during the meeting. During a presentation of the device by a representative of the manufacturer, Stryker, council members saw the plastic disc provide motorized compressions to a mannequin torso, Stryker representative Jamie Smith explained that the device is designed to provide consistent compressions to keep blood flow to the brain during medical emergency treatment by EMTs in the field.

Sumpter trustees approve police equipment purchase

Members of the Sumpter Township Board of Trustees approved two equipment purchases for the police department during their meeting Nov. 9.

Trustees authorized the expenditure of $5,779 for two radar speed signs for the township at the request of Director of Public Safety/Police Chief Eric Luke. In obtaining prices for the signs, Luke told the board, quotes from another vendor proved to be $1,000 higher in price and included a $550 annual fee, prompting his recommendation to purchase the signs from Evolis.

The board also approved the purchase of three BolaWrap passive restraint devices in the amount of $4,068. Luke explained that these resistance units fire a Kevlar wrap around the legs of a suspect, disabling them. 

Santa arrives Saturday during winter parade

Santa will officially arrive in the Belleville area on Saturday, Dec. 4 following the Winter Fest parade.

The parade theme this year is  A Christmas Carol, Christmas Past, Present and Future and prizes will be awarded to floats judged to be the best in each to those three categories along with a prize for the Overall Best Float. Following the parade, there will be fireworks from the Denton Road bridge. 

Teen arrested, charged in bathroom sex assault

A 15-year-old boy will face kidnapping and assault with intent to commit sexual penetration charges in an attack on a woman in a public restroom in downtown Plymouth.

The attack took place during the evening of Oct. 30, according to police. Video surveillance cameras recorded the teen entering the Comfort Station on Penniman Avenue, adjacent to The Gathering at about 6:34 p.m.  At about 7 p.m., according to prosecutor's reports, a 29-year-old woman is seen entering the public restroom.

Meet the champs

Members of the Northville Township Board of Trustees congratulated the Northville High School Girls Golf Team on their fourth consecutive Division 1 State Girls Golf Championship. The team's two-day total of 615 is a State Finals record. The golfers are the only program in Northville High School history to ever win four state titles in their history, let alone consecutively. A resolution honoring the team was presented during the meeting of the trustees earlier this month. "On behalf of our entire community, we are extremely proud of you. You have represented yourselves, your teammates, your school and your community incredibly well and we thank you for bringing tremendous honor to the entire community," trustees said. 

Meeting to discuss new township skatepark scheduled

Members of the Northville community will be asked for their opinions regarding a proposed skateboard park in the township next Thursday.

Members of the board of trustees have scheduled a special study session at 7 p.m. Dec. 9 at township hall to consider a new skatepark along with a request for $150,000 in financial support for the facility.

Northville Garden Club to meet

Members of the Country Garden Club of Northville will resume meetings at 11 a.m. Jan. 5 at Plymouth First United Methodist Church. Speakers begin at 11:30 following a short business meeting and refreshments.

The January speaker will be Laurie Medrea who will discuss Winter in the Garden. The next meeting is set for Jan. 5 with speaker Celia Ryker whose topic will be Trail Stories of a Hiking Gardener. The March 2 speaker will be Carolyn Paten who will discuss Dow Gardens.

The church is located at 45201 N. Territorial Road in Plymouth.

Canton to host Christmas With The Celts next week

Christmas with the Celts on stage (photo courtesy of Nashville
Christmas with the Celts touring company). 
The Village Theater at Cherry Hill will feature Christmas with the Celts beginning at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 8, when the national touring company will take the stage for a special holiday celebration featuring world-class musicians and the always crowd-pleasing Irish step dancers. This festive concert will also feature a special performance by the East Middle School Show Choir.

The original national PBS show, Christmas with The Celts, aired on more than 200 PBS stations across the U.S., Canada, and on the BBC in Ireland over the past several years. This successful TV show was the initial spark, which created a huge demand for the production to head out on the road every year, taking them on a national tour to perform live at theaters and performing arts centers.

Making it official


The newly-elected Canton Board of Trustees was sworn in by 35th District Court Judge Mark Slavens (center)  on Friday, Nov. 20. The three full-time elected officials are Supervisor Anne Marie Graham-Hudak, Treasurer Dian Slavens, and Clerk Michael Siegrist. Board of trustees members include Kate Borninski and Tania Ganguly, as well as returning Trustees Sommer N. Foster and Steve Sneideman. 

Licenses for dogs available

Canton Township Clerk Michael Siegrist has the perfect holiday gift for area pets-a 2022 dog license and Canton Dog Park membership.

All township licenses and memberships will expire Dec. 21, making this holiday season the perfect time to ensure dogs are licensed as required by township ordinance. All  current rabies, distemper (DHLLP), and Bordetella vaccinations are required for dog licenses. Applications can be made in person during business hours 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday or online at www.canton-mi.org/209. Mail-in applications are also accepted with mailed documentation and fees sent to Canton Clerk's Office, 1150 South Canton Center Road, Canton, MI 48188. Attention: Dog License.

Thursday, November 25, 2021

Wayne County Lightfest celebrates holiday season

The Wayne County Lightfest, a four-mile stretch of Hines Park, displaying nearly 50 animated holiday- themed displays and more than 100,000 lights, is now open for motorists.

The Lightfest is available for viewing from 6 until 10 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday until Friday, Dec. 31. The display is closed Dec. 25.  Due to overwhelming response to the Lightfest, wait times may be longer than normal on weekends, county officials said. "Families all over the Metro Detroit Area are looking for safe activities to participate in this holiday season and our staff is working diligently to make the Lightfest experience as positive as possible," he added.

Long-time Northville Township Police Chief to retire

Chief Paul Tennies
Northville Township Police Chief Paul Tennies will retire from public service in December after a 19-year career with the Northville Township Police Department. 

Township Manager/Director of Public Safety Todd Mutchler made the announcement at the meeting of the board of trustees last week. 

Tennies joined the Department in 2002 as a patrol officer, later serving as Field Training Officer and department instructor. His leadership skills were evident then,  Mutchler said. 

“Throughout his career, he's led a fantastic team of officers to new heights, he's built bridges with community partners and arrested a lot of people,” he said. “He is an excellent public servant and an asset to our community. We will miss him greatly.” 

Canton Township wins second grant to study recycling effort

Earlier this year, Canton Township embarked on an eight-week “Feet on the Street” recycling cart tagging program to help eliminate contamination in curbside carts. This program was funded by a Recycling Quality Improvement Grant from The Recycling Partnership and Michigan EGLE (Environment, Great Lakes and Energy).

Residential participation in the program improved the contamination rate in the township by 28 percent, according to officials.

In an effort to expand on the success of the program, township officials applied for additional grant funding to focus on education about the contamination in carts. Recently, officials learned that Canton was selected by The Recycling Partnership and Michigan EGLE as a Recycling App to Action Grant recipient. By accepting this grant, Canton will take recycling data gathered during the previous Recycling Quality Improvement Grant, analyze it to better understand the recycling behavior of Canton Township residents and amplify the results with targeted education and outreach, officials explained.

Trustees continue to criticize published misinformation

Despite published claims, the new injection wells at Carleton Farms will pose no threat to the water quality of Sumpter Township residents.

The new wells will be used to dispose of leachate at the waste disposal facility. Leachate is groundwater that has percolated through the waste at the site and leached out some of the constituents. Currently, Carleton Farms has the collected leachate trucked off the site and disposed of elsewhere, officials explained during a Sept. 28 study session of the Sumpter Township Board of Trustees. 

Representatives from Republic Services, owners of Carleton Farms, appeared before the trustees as a courtesy, they explained, as an effort to be a good neighbor. They noted that the township had no input or control regarding the installation or management of the proposed wells which would be regulated at the federal and state level.

Holiday help is available

Applications for assistance from both the Sumpter Township and 2021 Belleville/Van Buren Township Goodfellows Christmas Food and Toy Distribution programs are now available.

Van Buren application forms are available 24/7 at the Van Buren Township Police Department front desk at 46425 Tyler Road in Van Buren Township. Applications for Christmas help from the Sumpter Township Goodfellows are now available at Sumpter Ace Hardware, the Sumpter Township Police Station and Sumpter Township Hall, as well as at district schools.

Northville Township bond rating raised to AAA

Northville Township has received the coveted AAA Bond rating from S&P Global Ratings, formerly Standard & Poor's. The AAA Bond rating is the highest possible, and Northville is one of fewer than 20 communities in Michigan to receive such an honor. 

“The board of trustees and our staff have been working hard to strengthen our financial position by lowering long-term costs, building strong fund balances, and keeping taxes low,” said Mark J. Abbo, Northville Township supervisor. “These efforts have resulted in the strongest bond rating from Standard & Poor's and will benefit the township for decades to come.” 

County denies parents’ request for new crosswalk

Despite the efforts of a group of concerned citizens, Wayne County officials have denied a request for a crosswalk across Joy Road to provide easier access to Salem High School.

The parents, residents of the Westbriar Village and Trillium Woods, made a formal request to the county for the crosswalk which would have allowed pedestrians to cross to and from property adjacent to the high school, part of the Plymouth-Canton Educational Park. The request was denied by Wayne County officials, according to a Nov. 17 communication from Joshua Meier, director of school safety and security for the school district.

Giving Tuesday

Canton Leisure Services joins effort

Canton Township will join a world-wide event next Tuesday.

Canton Leisure Services will be among the global participants in GivingTuesday set for Nov. 30 this year.

Always marked on the Tuesday following Thanksgiving, GivingTuesday is a global generosity movement unleashing the power of radical generosity. The movement was created in 2012 as a simple idea: a day that encourages people to do good. Since then, it has grown into a year-round global movement that inspires hundreds of millions of people to give, collaborate, and celebrate generosity. Canton Township is in good company as the co-founding organization of the effort was the United Nations.

Council approves 2 new housing developments

Developers are hoping for perfect attendance at two new residential developments at former elementary school sites in Westland.

Members of the Westland City Council unanimously approved the two home developments proposed by Lombardo Homes during a regular meeting Nov. 15. At the 12.16 acre former site of James Madison Elementary School, on the east side of Carlson south of Avondale, the developer plans to construct 45 homes. At the former 9.06 acre site of Kettering Elementary School between Venoy Road and Hubbard Street, 35 new homes will be built.  Both schools were closed in 2011 by the Wayne-Westland Community Schools Board of Education due to declining enrollment.

Driver in fatal hit-and-run is sentenced to prison

A 21-year-old Westland man has been sentenced to 2-5 years in prison for leaving the scene of an accident that took the life of a Northville college student.

Gustavo Godinez was driving on Sheldon Road between Five and Six Mile Road at about 11:30 p.m. Sept. 3, 2020 when he struck Dominic Duhn, 20, who was skateboarding in the road. Duhn, a student at Michigan State University and a former Eagle Scout was pronounced dead at the scene by paramedics called by his companion after the impact. The pair had reportedly activated their cell phone strobe lights to warn oncoming motorists they were skateboarding down the 100-foot incline in the area. 

Tickets for annual Holiday Taste Fest now available

Tickets for the Westland Holiday Taste Fest are now on sale but are limited.

The annual charity event will take place from 6 until 8:30 p.m. Dec. 7 at the Hellenic Cultural Center.

The $25 admission ticket includes food from area restaurants and culinary artists featuring special treats and holiday displays. The traditional auction and raffles will also take place featuring prizes in the live auction, the You Pick raffle, a 50/50 drawing and Bucket of Cheer raffles.

Live music will be provided by the Marsha Gayle Band and emcees for the event will be Ralph and Kim Cabildo.

Police shooting of dog remains under investigation

The internal investigation by Inkster police into the shooting of dog by an officer is ongoing, according to an official statement from the department.

A 4-year-old mastiff, owned by Inkster resident Brad Brock, was shot and killed by an Inkster officer earlier this month. According to Brock, the dog was shot as it approached the officer, attempting, Brock said, to greet him. 

Brock said the incident occurred after he made a 911 call to the police to report an altercation at a nearby gas station on Michigan Avenue.  His dog, Moose, was not on a leash at the time and was approaching Brock  when the officer fired four times, striking the animal.

Official holiday events scheduled in City of Romulus

Last year, Santa Claus was virtually welcomed to Romulus by
city officials and grade student Ezabella Brewer. This year,
residents are invited to the free event at Romulus Historical Park. 
The traditional tree lighting ceremony in Romulus will begin with hot cocoa and snacks before newly-elected Mayor Robert McCraight officially welcomes Santa to the city.

The official dedication and presentation of the key to the city to Santa is set to take place at 6:30 p.m. and this year will include a holiday performance by the Romulus High School Choir. Residents will be encouraged to join in singing carols and there will be holiday vendors on site for gift shopping. Photos with Santa will be available after the dedication for $10 each.

This year, the family-friendly, free event will also attempt to "Stuff the Bus" with non-perishable food donations to help the Romulus Helping Hand facility in the city.

Philharmonic conductor’s contract is renewed

Nan Harrison Washburn
Longtime conductor and music director of the Michigan Philharmonic, Nan Harrison Washburn, has renewed her contract for three years through the Philharmonic 2024-2025 season. 

As the second longest-running conductor of the Philharmonic, Washburn has already led the regional symphony for 23 of the organization's 76-year history.  

In her role, Washburn has steadfastly focused on an innovative approach to performances, a deep dedication to engaging with audiences of all ages and interests and a true devotion to educating young musicians in the joys and intricacies of all forms of classical and even pop music, according to a statement from the Philharmonic board of directors. 

Earlier this year she was honored for her timeless efforts to promote the Philharmonic as the face of music culture in the community, being named one of Crain's Notable LGBTQ in Business leaders for 2021, which recognized her devotion to enriching all of the cultural community not only in and around metro Detroit but across the country. 

Wayne welcomes Santa next week

Santa will make his official visit to Wayne during Holiday Night at the Museum set for 6 until 8:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 4.

The traditional Christmas Parade will begin at 6 p.m. and at 6:30 the official welcome of Santa to the city will take place as he is presented the key to the city by Mayor John Rhaesa and members of the Wayne City Council. The official tree lighting ceremony will follow. From 7 until 8:30 the Wayne Historical Museum will open for children to meet both Santa and Mrs. Claus. A warming fire pit with Kurt and Angie Jarman of Kurt's Caps of Wayne will also be available. 

Thursday, November 18, 2021

Northville Township files lawsuit against landfill

Northville Township has filed a lawsuit against the Arbor Hills Landfill in an effort, officials said, to hold the facility accountable for past violations and prevent future harm to township residents. 

The eight-count lawsuit which seeks to stop noxious odors, prevent intrusion of excess pollutants and protect Johnson Creek was filed Nov. 10.

After unsuccessfully working with lanfill owners GFL towards a resolution since their ownership began in October 2020, Northville Township Supervisor Mark J. Abbo has taken steps necessary to protect the health, safety, and welfare of township residents, according to a statement from the township.

Top marks

Local teacher wins state Lottery Excellence in Education award

Educator Chris Kozaczynski displays his
Excellence in Education award presented
 to him last week by the Michigan State
Lottery honoring his teaching efforts
 at Walker Winter Elementary School
in Canton Township.

A Wayne Westland Community School District educator known for creating an engaging environment for students has been honored with an Excellence in Education award from the Michigan Lottery.

The award winner, Chris Kozaczynski, is a second grade gifted and talented teacher at Walker-Winter Elementary School which is part of the Wayne-Westland school district.

The Michigan Lottery established the Excellence in Education awards in 2014 to recognize outstanding public-school educators across the state during the school year.

Winners of the weekly award receive a plaque, a $1,500 cash prize, and a $500 grant to be used for their classroom, school, or school district. One of the weekly winners will be selected as the Educator of the Year and will receive a $10,000 cash prize.

Kozaczynski said a senior service project drew him to a career as an educator.

Plymouth community mourns death of Fred Hill, 79

The Plymouth community is mourning the death of Frederick W. Hill, 79, who died at his home Nov. 15 after a battle with pancreatic cancer.

Mr. Hill was known throughout the area for his long-involvement and community activism. He was most widely known for his founding and direction of the Fred Hill Briefcase Drill Team which performed in the American Thanksgiving Day Parade, the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, the Fiesta Bowl Parade in Tempe Arizona and at the Indianapolis 500.  Mr. Hill was a 50-year member of the Plymouth Kiwanis Club and the owner of Fred Hill Real Estate in Plymouth. He formerly owned a men's clothing store in Main Street in downtown Plymouth.

Planning commissioners OK new development

Members of the Canton township Planning Commission have approved plans for a 62-acre, mixed use development on Michigan Avenue.

The new development, named Redwood Marketplace, includes plans for several hundred single-story apartment units and commercial buildings. It would be the first of this type in the southern end of the township. Commissioners approved the plan and recommended final approval for the planned development district during the Nov. 1 meeting.

Social worker program under way

The Canton Township Police Department embedded social worker pilot program, a partnership with Hegira Health, is already under way.

Social worker Renee Glass, LMSW, BCTP, is working with officers to assist citizens in need of counseling, referrals and resources related to a variety of issues such as criminal violence, geriatric issues, mental health concerns, addiction, homeless and indigent assistance. The program supplements the efforts of the 18 Canton Township officers who are trained in crisis response and intervention through the Detroit-Wayne Integrated Health Network, to assist with mental health response and to reduce the stigma of mental health issues and the need for further involvement with the criminal justice system. 

Councilwoman protests appointment procedure

Virginia Williams
Following the 20th official inauguration ceremony Nov. 8, members of the Romulus City Council met to establish the meeting calendar and make official appointments for the current terms of office. Voters chose to reelect all seven incumbents during balloting Nov. 2, and elected Robert McCraight as the new mayor. McCraight, the former director of public services and economic development for the city, was the choice of 2,483 or 59 percent of the voters.

Controversy erupted during the meeting regarding the naming of the council chairman pro tem, a position traditionally filled by the second-highest vote getter in the council race. This month, incumbent Virginia Williams with 2,344 votes, received the second highest vote total, with current council Chairman John Barden receiving the highest number of votes at 2,530.

Newly-elected mayor promises to ‘exceed expectations’

Mayor Robert McCraight 
The 20th inauguration ceremony for newly-elected Romulus officials drew a large crowd of supporters and well wishers to city hall Nov. 8.

After opening remarks from several local dignitaries, 34th District Court Judge Lisa Martin administered the oath of office to city council members John Barden; Virginia Williams; Tina M. Talley; William J. Wadsworth; Celeste Roscoe; Kathy Abdo and Eva Webb. All are incumbents. Judge Tina Brooks-Green officiated at the swearing in of incumbent City Clerk Ellen Craig-Bragg who was unopposed in her bid for a fourth term in office, and incumbent city Treasurer Stacy Paige.

Newly-elected Mayor Robert McCraight was sworn into office by Brian Oakley, chief judge at the 34th District Court in Romulus.

Judge reinstates bond for state legislator

Jewell Jones
State Rep. Jewell Jones was expected to leave the Livingston County Jail Friday after posting reinstated bond and has until Dec. 10 to consider a plea deal offered by the prosecution.

Jones, who had been incarcerated for 60 days, was to be released on a $100,000 personal recognizance bond and on a second $100,000 or 10-percent bond with multiple conditions. Judge Michael Hatty reinstated Jones original bond based on his arrest on drunk driving and resisting arrest charges from an April 6 incident. He was ordered to jail on those charges after repeated bond violations including alcohol consumption, tampering with the alcohol monitor, misleading the court regarding his whereabouts and failure to pay the fee for the court-ordered monitor. The second bond was imposed in connection to charges filed after a handcuff key was discovered taped to the bottom of Jones' foot during jail intake processing in September.

Inkster man charged in Hamtramck shooting deaths

RayQuan Young, 24, of Inkster, has been arrested and charged with six felony offenses in connection with the death of two people in Hamtramck.

According to police reports, Young was charged Nov. 13 in the deaths Khalileo Anderson and his girlfriend, De'Angelique Thomas. The case had been under investigation since Hamtramck police were called to Anderson's apartment in the 3500 block of Caniff Street in the city at about 2:45 p.m. Oct. 28. When officers arrived at the scene, they discovered the two victims dead from multiple gunshot wounds, according to police reports.

Motorists welcome reopening of Harvey Street

Plymouth motorists celebrated last week when the intersection of Harvey Street and Penniman opened to traffic.

The intersection officially opened last Friday after three months of construction during which new utilities were installed, including a new water main installed under the Tonquish Creek, new wider, ADA sidewalks constructed, additional lighting  was connected, a new mid-block crossing installed connecting the Tonquish Creek Nature Trail to downtown, and the foundations for the new mast arm signals and pedestrian crossing signals were prepped for installation next spring. 

Officials said there will be some on-going restoration work taking place during the next few weeks. 

Northville district receives top rating from auditors

Mary Kay Gallagher
Northville Public Schools continues to meet the highest standards for accuracy of financial statements, accountability for use of federal and state funds, and overall financial stability, according to the report presented by Plante & Moran auditors at the Oct. 26 board of education meeting. 

The auditors awarded Northville Public Schools the highest possible audit rating in rendering an “unmodified” opinion for the district financial statements and federal awards, while noting no material weaknesses or deficiencies, and qualifying the district as a low-risk auditee. 

The most recent S & P bond rating review of the district in May, 2020 cited Northville Public Schools' strong financial position, and held the District's AA-, long-term rating, despite the challenging economic environment shaped by the pandemic. 

Rezoning of marijuana growing sites is proposed

Sumpter Township may soon restrict marijuana growers to industrial-zoned property, rather than allowing caregivers to utilize their primary residences to produce the plants.

Trustee Matt Oddy first brought the issue to the attention of the board of trustees during a regular meeting, explaining that there have been changes and challenges to the current state law and that this effort could be superceded by changes under discussion in the state Legislature. Nevertheless, Oddy said, he felt the township should impose restrictions moving the growing of the plants to an industrially zoned area. 

Trustees delay purchase of pump station air cleaning system

Members of the Sumpter Township Board of Trustees opted to table the purchase of a new air cleaning system for the Sumpter Road pump station until next spring.

Trustees agreed that the 14-16-week lead time necessary for the installation of the $85,100 BioAir system would be better authorized next spring. The machine would be installed in an effort to remediate the odor at the pump station, located at the corner of Willis and Sumpter roads. 

Residents in the area have been complaining for months about the odors emitting from the facility, and a recent survey indicated that 26 or 27 of neighboring residents found the smell emanating from the station to be “intolerable.”

Wayne marks Veterans Day at city memorial

The Veterans Memorial next to Wayne City Hall was the site of a Veterans' Day ceremony last Thursday, Nov. 11. 

Wayne Community Development Director Lori Gouin acted as the emcee of the event and the ceremony officially began with the pledge of allegiance let by Wayne Councilman Kevin Dowd,  Wayne Councilwoman Kelly Skiff and Wayne Councilman Phil Wagner.  

Pastor Seth McDonald of Hillcrest Bible Church led the opening prayer while Wayne Mayor John Rhaesa offered opening remarks. Wayne Fire Department Captain Dave Wylie and veterans Kathy Baker, Dan Valdez and Ed Queen along with Chris Miller placed commemorative wreaths next to the memorials.

Westland Police Honor Guard fundraiser is set

Members of the Westland Police Honor Guard are selling Challenge Coins to fund their trip to Washington D.C. to represent the city during National Police Week. To help them achieve what they describe as a “significant goal,” they are selling the commemorative coins online.

Many teams of highly dedicated law enforcement officers attend the national police week ceremonies to represent organizations from across the United States and Canada. The teams converge in Washington every year for National Police Week, where peace officers are honored for their dedicated service to the protection of local communities.

On May 15, known as National Peace Officers' Memorial Day, the nation honors those officers who have made the ultimate sacrifice. 

Happy birthday

Last Saturday, the William P. Faust Public Library of Westland celebrated 25 years of excellence that included a look back of at all the advances the library has been part of during the past quarter century, as well as a look at all the services and technology the library currently offers. Past and present employees, board members, volunteers, city, state and county leaders and residents were treated to a celebration of the 25 years of service the library has provided to the community.

Thursday, November 11, 2021

A day to remember

Holiday pays tribute to those who have served our country

Veterans Day gives Americans the opportunity to celebrate the bravery and sacrifice of all U.S. veterans. However, most Americans confuse this holiday with Memorial Day, which specifically commemorates those who died while in service of their country and made the ultimate sacrifice.

What's more, some Americans don't know why veterans are commemorated  on Nov. 11, although in recent years it has become "politically correct" to say to veterans, as well as to frontline workers, "thank you for your service.'

Canton tree ordinance is ruled ‘unconstitutional’

Canton Township efforts to protect trees in the community have been sharply curtailed by a decision of the 6th U.S. Court of Appeals. The decision, handed down last month, affirms the early ruling of the U.S. District Court which determined that the township demand that a private company replace 160 felled trees or remit $48,000 to the township tree fund was unconstitutional.

The court agreed with an early ruling that the efforts of the township to control and protect trees on private property, “went too far.” The original ruling by U.S. District Court Judge George Caram Steeh in 2020 found, “Here, the character of the government action is to require a private property owner to maintain the trees on its property for the benefit of the community at large. This is a burden that should be shared by the community as a whole.

“The court finds that as applied to this plaintiff, the tree ordinance goes too far and is an unconstitutional regulatory taking.”