Plymouth officials to sell snow machine
Jan. 1, 2017 PLYMOUTH EAGLE.
Plymouth Michigan News
It took the new officials in Plymouth Township only 3 minutes to approve the sale of the controversial snow machine purchased by the previous administration.
Members of the township board of trustees unanimously approved a motion to sell the snow-making device which was purchased in February and delivered in March of last year.
The machine, a SMI Pole Cat Snow Gun, was purchased directly from a Midland manufacturing company in response to an avid proposal from former Treasurer Ron Edwards who insisted on the immediate purchase of the $21,820 unit he had personally selected for the Plymouth Township Park sledding hill. He claimed he needed as much time as possible for testing the machine, making immediate action on the purchase necessary. His motion for the expense was approved by a 4-3 vote with Trustees Bob Doroshewitz, Chuck Curmi and Mike Kelly casting the opposing votes while former Supervisor Richard Reaume, Edwards, defeated Clerk Nancy Conzelman and the late Trustee Kay Arnold acquiesced to his urgings. All four of the officials were facing a recall petition drive at the time.
Those opposed to the purchase noted the national statistics which show that there are more than 20,000 sledding accidents resulting in injuries annually, a statistic Edwards dis- missed peremptorily. In March 2015, Edwards personally accepted delivery of the machine at the township DPW building from a special flat bed truck required to transport the huge device.
Subsequently, township officials were notified that extensive funding would be required for new water lines, plumbing installations, hydraulic pumps and 3-phase electrical wiring to make the snow machine operable. At the time of purchase, officials did not know if sufficient water pressure was available at the site to power the machine.
When the machine was finally operational, neighbors in the adjoining subdivision complained of the continuous drone of the blowers and pumps keeping them awake as the machine operated throughout the night to provide adequate snow for the hill.
Township Supervisor Kurt Heise told board members at the Tuesday meeting he wanted the machine gone and already had potential leads for buyers. Without fanfare, Doroshewitz read the motion to sell the device and Trustee Gary Heitman quickly seconded it.
The motion was presented and unanimously approved in less than 3 minutes.
Photo: © Don Howard/Associated Newspapers