2017-07-13 / Front Page

Goodrich approves grant, debates Parks position

By Paula K. Schmidt
810-452-2647 • pschmidt@mihomepaper.com

Stephanie Bussema holds Kili, an injured Bald Eagle who resides at the Howell Nature Center full time. Kili and friends had a recent visit in Grand Blanc. See story on page 17. Stephanie Bussema holds Kili, an injured Bald Eagle who resides at the Howell Nature Center full time. Kili and friends had a recent visit in Grand Blanc. See story on page 17. Editors note: This article was written based on online video made by a resident who attended the meeting and questions asked via email.

GOODRICH – The village council approved a $500 grant for a new sign for the Commons Park, which according to Administrator Jakki Sidge will contain text or wording which says it is a public park with recreational opportunity.

The grant was brought to the special meeting as the grant monies had to be used by Aug. 31. She added the Department of Public Works would assist with the labor of putting the sign up at the Erie Street entrance. The grant is part of the Genesee Lapeer Shiawassee Region V Planning and Development Commission--I-69 Thumb Region Ecotourism Micro- Grant program.

In other business, the council set a tentative meeting to review the employee policy manual July 12th at 6 p.m. (EDIT: Changed to July 13th). They also debated the replacement of Dan Keller, who has resigned from the Parks and Recreation committee. A motion was approved to appoint Wendy Ciaramitaro, who is the designated Alternate member to the position, but councilman Tim Barraco, who also sits on the committee, asked if there would be a call to the public for Keller’s replacement rather than just an appointment.

Councilwoman Shannon McCafferty stated it had been brought up at a previous meeting that having an alternate was not needed and “kind of hokey”, which Council President Mark Baldwin questioned, saying, “Isn’t that the purpose of an alternate?” meaning; to fill in when someone was absent.

Councilman Jacob Vick made the point that an alternate is able to vote in the absence of a member and if they put the alternate in a regular seat, they would still have a vacancy which he felt would require a public call for volunteers as suggested by Barraco; which would then be filled by a vote of council.

McCafferty said she believes having several people on the committee makes it more difficult to reach consensus and stated the only thing accomplished in the last several meetings was agreeing on a Department of Natural Resources grant.

“It’s always, we have to table this, have to wait on that, we can’t agree on this… it turns into a big argument between everybody. Everybody’s buttin’ heads. I mean how many more people do we want to add to the pot to make it even more difficult to accomplish anything,” she explained.

Sidge said the committee needs to realize they don’t make decisions, but recommend those matters to the council, and added they could advertise for a vacancy but “nobody is knocking down the door” to get on the committee.

McCafferty stated that was all the more reason to appoint Ciaramitaro, but Barraco felt a public appeal should be made for the sake of transparency. Jacob Vick added the structure of the committee also details how many people are supposed to be appointed, including the alternate.

Following review of the video, Parks and Recreation committee member Katie Vick reported she had reached out to Angie Adamec, the committee chair to try to mediate issues which are preventing the group from moving forward. However, she stated she was rebuffed with a personal attack, stating it is her negativity and obstructionism that are the issues. Adamec also served in the past as the head of the Goodrich Village Volunteers who performed park and trail updates in the village previously before the Parks and Recreation committee was formed.

Furthermore, Adamec refused to comment when reached out to for more information. As a resident, Katie Vick proposed a comprehensive park plan which was turned down by the village council prior to that time and who has questioned the village’s transparency when it comes to Parks and Recreation decisions.

The next Parks and Recreation meeting is Thursday, July 13, at 5:30 p.m. in the Village of Goodrich community room.

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