Letter to the editor blasts township officials

Rendering of  $625,000 park pavilion.

 

Aug. 9, 2013  PLYMOUTH VOICE.

 

Campaign supporter says he’s furious and embarrassed

 

To the editor:

I was furious last week when the Plymouth Township Board voted 4-3 to borrow $2 million to spend on “recreation” projects without any input from the voters.

This was done in secrecy by burying it in a special meeting April 23 where the public only knew it was coming if they checked the website all day, every day. What they did, borrowing for many unnecessary and wasteful projects, was bad enough. The way they did it was shameful.

The April 23 meeting was called at the last possible minute. Some of the trustees had no idea what was coming and had no time to read the board packet or get feedback from the voters. The cameras were conveniently turned off at both the April 23 and July 23 meetings. Voters at home were unable to see the way the board acted and the public outcry against the projects. Numerous calls to the township asking why the videos were not posted go to voicemail and are never returned.

Many of my friends and I campaigned hard to help elect this board, including the four that voted for the loan – Kay Arnold, Nancy Conzelman, Ron Edwards and Richard Reaume – on the promise they would practice conservative Republican principles. We supported them because we believed we did not think we would have to watch over them like little children.

Instead, the board is divided on every issue with the four voting set to vote together regardless of what the public or the other three might have to say when things don’t add up. It leads me to believe we may not be fully complying with the open meetings act.

Last year the voters supported the board when they told us deep cuts to fire and ambulance services were needed because we couldn’t afford things the way they were, yet a year later there seems to be an endless supply of other people’s borrowed money and an open checkbook with which to spend it.

They justified themselves by hiding behind the 2010 recreation plan and then conveniently ignored the part where the plan set the pavilion price at $100,000 and then ballooned to $625,000 in less than three years. Since there was no public objection to $100,000 then I guess that means any amount is okay. Why not make it an even million or how about two?

They are going to sink another $350,000 into a golf course that has been losing money for years because they claim thousands of new golfers will pack the place if they just move the entrance so golfers won’t get their cars dirty when it rains. The list of projects goes on and on, there are too many to list here and don’t bother to look for them on the website unless you are willing to spend hours searching for them.

I attend most board meetings and am embarrassed for our township by the lack of respect these people show the voters who dare to disagree. Many voters are there for the first time and most never come back as the reward they get for holding their “public servants” accountable is to be argued with or to be met with eye rolling, sneers and comments under the breath that the new microphones clearly pick up. And all of them are dismissed as crackpots and crazies, which is what I am sure they will do to me.

Duane Zantop

Plymouth Township

 

Editor: Mr. Zantop is a Plymouth Township resident and Vice President of Zantop International Airlines of Ypsilanti

|News Plymouth Michigan

 

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