Two vie for Leland Supervisor in Republican primary
Vicki Kilway of Lake Leelanau and Cal Little of Leland are seeking the Republican nomination. Susan Och is running on the Democratic ticket.
One Republican and Och will advance to the General Election.
Kilway is a resident of Leelanau County/Leelanau Township for more than 50 years. She is a graduate of Leland Public Schools and served as county treasurer from 1981 to 2008.
She also attended various continuing education programs during her time as an elected county official. She a volunteers at community events and fundraisers including the Lake Leelanau Walleye Festival and Spring Music Fest.
Little has been a county resident since 1986. His business career was in marketing and advertising, much of it with a major Detroit advertising agency. Little owned Benjamin Twiggs Cherry products in Traverse City. He is currently chairperson of the Leland Township Fire Board.
Och has served one term as a trustee on the Leland Township Board. She and her husband, Richard, have raised two grown daughters, and a third daughter is now attending Leland Public School.
The following are the responses to four questions posed to the candidates:
KILWAY: As certain subjects come up extra input from the audience would be welcome within a limited time frame per subject.
LITTLE: Giving citizens the opportunity to voice their opinion at Board meetings is critical to providing good government. It’s equally important the Township Board conducts their business efficiently and always in open forum. When considering public comment outside designated periods, good judgment must prevail. The publics’ right to speak must be balanced with meeting decorum. I would encourage limited public comment where and when it’s germane to the issue being discussed.
OCH: Our meetings are often enhanced and informed by impromptu comments from the public. But some residents tell me that they are put off by the name calling, slander, and general disrespect that they have sometimes observed. Many townships have written policy on public comments during meetings. I would like to encourage civility and public input, with the understanding that a town board meeting’s purpose is to conduct township business, not to serve as anyone’s soapbox.
KILWAY: If elected, I would set hours during the normal work day and also set evening and/or weekend hours if it would be more beneficial to the residents. Vacation time would be minimal.
LITTLE: Fortunately, I am retired from a career in business and live in Leland Township year ‘round. I will allocate whatever time is necessary to fulfill Township responsibilities. As to vacations, I have family and grandchildren in distant cities and enjoy visiting them but I would of course remain accessible during these visits.
OCH: With a daughter in high school and the whole family working during the busy summer season, we don’t vacation more than a few weeks each year. I intend to keep regular office hours, coordinating with the clerk and treasurer to open the office as many hours as possible without scheduling a quorum at the office. When I work from home or am out in the township, I am available via cell phone or email.
KILWAY: I have 36 years experience in county government, which allowed me to work closely with all levels of local government.
LITTLE: Tools I would bring to the Supervisor’s role: communication skills, both listening and in dialogue; leadership skills, to encourage independent thought while focusing on the task at hand; marketing skills, to be mindful of the various publics in the community and their importance; fiscal management skills, hands on experience in working with large dollar projects for clients and in managing my own company’s affairs; foresight to be aware of unintended consequences when deciding important issues.
OCH: As trustee, I have studied all township operations, and studied the laws and procedures that require township government to be fair and transparent. I also take advantage of classes and workshops provided by the Michigan Township Association and other organizations to stay on top of the issues and regulations facing townships. As supervisor, I will draw upon Leland Township’s most valuable asset — our many volunteers — supporting them while ensuring that we stay within the law.
KILWAY: Yes and yes.
LITTLE: Yes & yes but that is not to say under certain circumstances a two station concept is not also viable. There are trade-offs for both scenarios. Much due diligence has been performed by the former Emergency Response Facilities Committee and the Fire Board and I won’t negate any of that but the reality remains, we have not been able to find a willing seller in the target area and we must go forward.
OCH: The consolidation proposal depended on finding a centrally located site in order to provide the best and fastest service to our township at a reasonable cost. While we haven’t found the perfect site, we have nearby prospects. Our new agreement with Suttons Bay signals increased cooperation with our neighbors, supporting efforts to strategically locate our resources and the fire station. The Fire Board and our new hire fire chief will be working on this.
Job duties, compensation
The township supervisor is frequently the first official contacted about township business or complaints and is often perceived as the township spokesman. The supervisor acts as a moderator of township meetings and has the authority to place a person under oath. Supervisors are also the township's agent for transacting legal business, and have the power to make appointments with board concurrence.
Compensation for the Leland post is $22,000.