Montcalm County Sheriff Bill Barnwell is hoping voters will place a priority on protection when they vote Nov. 6.
Voters will be asked whether to approve a 0.6 mill proposal to generate about $971,830 per year for two years to help restore and maintain sheriff’s department coverage throughout Montcalm County.
As of Oct. 1, the sheriff’s office stopped providing around-the-clock coverage to Montcalm County residents. The Greenville Department of Public Safety is the only other 24/7 road patrol agency in Montcalm County.
The 24/7 coverage ended after the Montcalm County Board of Commissioners made about $733,000 in countywide budget cuts, including about $345,000 to the sheriff’s office. The sheriff’s office sustained another $300,000 in budget cuts last year.
If voters approve the millage on Nov. 6, Barnwell would be able to rehire three laid-off deputies (including a court deputy) and replace the positions of a recently retired deputy and sergeant.
“This is a real public safety issue,” Barnwell said. “We just want to keep our head above water. I’m worried not only about the safety of the public, but also the safety of my officers. I want to make sure they have enough guys out there to back them up during emergencies.”
Barnwell said Montcalm County has not gone without 24/7 coverage since the 1960s.
In addition to county budget cuts, the Montcalm County Jail is facing a revenue loss of about $350,000 next year when the new Kalamazoo County Jail opens. The Montcalm County Jail currently has an arrangement to house Kalamazoo County inmates, which generates extra revenue for Montcalm County.
A previous Montcalm County law enforcement millage request for $1.564 million over five years failed by 120 votes last February.
For more information about the proposed millage, visit “Montcalm County Law Enforcement Millage” on Facebook.
IONIA COUNTY 911 OPERATING SURCHARGE PROPOSAL
For the period beginning July 1, 2013 and continuing through the month of June in the year 2021, shall Ionia County be authorized to assess a monthly surcharge of up to Two Dollars and Forty Cents (not to exceed $2.40) on the monthly billings of landline, wireless and VOIP service suppliers within the geographic boundaries of Ionia County to be used exclusively for the funding of 911 emergency telephone call answering and dispatch services within Ionia County, including facilities, equipment and operations?
MONTCALM COUNTY LAW ENFORCEMENT MILLAGE
Shall the County of Montcalm, Michigan, impose an increase of up to .6 mill ($.60 per $1,000 of taxable valuation) in the tax limitation imposed under Article IX, Section 6 of the Michigan Constitution of 1963, as amended, against all real and personal property in the County, for a period of two years, 2012 through 2013, both inclusive, for the sole purpose of providing funds for the law enforcement function of the Montcalm County Sheriff’s Department; the estimate of the revenue the County will collect if the millage is approved and levied in 2012 is approximately $971,830.00?
BELVIDERE TOWNSHIP PROPOSALS
Shall the expiring previous voted increases in the tax limitation imposed under Article IX, Sec. 6 of the Michigan Constitution Belvidere Township, of 1.000 mill ($1.00 on each $1,000.00 of taxable value), reduced to .9724 mill ($0.9724 on each $1,000.00 of taxable value), by the required millage rollbacks, be renewed at and increased up to the original voted 1 mill ($1.00 on each $1,000.00 of taxable value), and levied for 9 years, 2013 to 2021 inclusive, for the purpose of providing funds for road maintenance and repair, raising an estimated $85,000.00 in the first year the millage is levied.
VILLAGE OF PIERSON MILLAGE PROPOSITION
Shall the Village of Pierson be authorized to increase its maximum authorized general millage rate by 1.9646 mills ($1.9646 per $1,000 of taxable value) from 10.5354 mills to 12.5 mills ($12.50 per $1,000 of taxable value), commencing in 2013 and continuing in perpetuity, and to levy such millage to provide funds for general operating and all other Village purposes?
The following is for informational purposes only: The Village’s maximum general millage rate of 12.5 mills as authorized by Chapter IX, Section 1 of the General Law Village Act (Public Act No. 3 of 1895, as amended) has been reduced by required Headlee Amendment rollbacks to 10.5354 mills. This new additional millage of 1.9646 mills would restore the millage rate lost due to the required Headlee Amendment rollbacks and would raise an estimated $3,500 in 2013 the first year of the levy.
TRI COUNTY AREA SCHOOLS OPERATING MILLAGE RENEWAL PROPOSAL
This proposal will allow the school district to levy the statutory rate of 18 mills on all property, except principal residence and other property exempted by law, required for the school district to receive its revenue per pupil foundation allowance and renews millage that will expire with the 2012 tax levy.
Shall the currently authorized millage rate limitation of 18 mills ($18.00 on each $1,000 of taxable valuation) on the amount of taxes which may be assessed against all property, except principal residence and other property exempted by law, in Tri-County Area Schools, Montcalm, Kent and Newaygo Counties, Michigan, be renewed for the year 2014, to provide funds for operating purposes; the estimate of the revenue the school district will collect if the millage is approved and levied in 2014 is approximately $2,450,000 (this is a renewal of millage which will expire with the 2013 tax levy)?