2018-02-15 / Local News

Road Comm. seeks millage renewal

By Eric Carlson
Of The Enterprise staff

ROAD COMMISSION managing director Dan Wagner, left, Chairman James Calhoun, and finance manager Joe Nedow, appear before the Leelanau County Board of Commissioners this week, seeking approval of ballot language for a millage renewal. ROAD COMMISSION managing director Dan Wagner, left, Chairman James Calhoun, and finance manager Joe Nedow, appear before the Leelanau County Board of Commissioners this week, seeking approval of ballot language for a millage renewal. As it has every other year since 1986, the Leelanau County Road Commission will ask county voters this August to approve a 0.5 extra-voted millage to help cover its general operating expenses.

At its monthly executive meeting Tuesday morning, the Leelanau County Board of Commissioners voted 7-0 to recommend that ballot language be approved for the Aug. 7 Primary Election.

The half-mill levy will raise an estimate $1.3 million for road and highway maintenance in its first year. That will cover about 17.5-percent of the Road Commission’s overall budget, according to managing director Dan Wagner.

Wagner was accompanied to this week’s County Board meeting by Road Commission Chairman James Calhoun and finance manager Joe Nedow.

The two largest sources of road funding in Michigan come from a vehicle registration fee and state-collected fuel taxes. Most counties in Michigan do not collect an extra-voted millage to augment their Road Commission budget as Leelanau County does.

“You can really tell the difference when you travel from one county to the next especially this time of year,” said District No. 2 Commissioner Debra Rushton. “This extra funding helps our own Road Commission do a much better job of snow plowing and road maintenance than many other counties in the state.”

Historically, Leelanau County voters have overwhelmingly approved the extra-voted millage to support the Road Commission, with more than 80-percent of voters marking “yes” on the ballot during Primary Elections every even-numbered year.

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