2018-03-29 / Life in Leelanau

Janik offers ‘top ten’ for county government

As part of his update for the Leelanau County Board of Commissioners, County Administrator Chet Janik earlier this month presented what he termed his “top ten points of pride” for county government in 2017-2018.

Here is Janik’s list, in his words:

• Financial stability and a positive bond rating. The county received a ‘clean’ audit and was recently recognized as being rated 9th (out of 83 counties) in Michigan in overall fiscal health.

The county has been aggressive in dealing with long-term liability issues (retirement costs) and was recently recognized as being one of only 20 counties (in Michigan) that has positively managed its retirement costs.

• A partnership has been formed with the Leelanau County Historical Preservation Society to save and renovate the historic “Poor Barn” located at the Myles Kimmerly Park at no cost to the taxpayers.

• The county’s millage rate of 3.53 mills is the lowest county rate in Michigan.

• A Substance Abuse Coalition was formed to take a proactive approach to the major challenge of opiate/drug and alcohol abuse that is affecting all segments of society. The county entered into a federal lawsuit against the manufacturers of some of the opiates.

• The number of construction permits has been on the increase the past five years and a quality assessment of the department is being performed in an effort to streamline and enhance the process for contractors and homeowners.

• The Law Enforcement Center’s heating, cooling, and ventilation system had a major upgrade and the project was completed on time and on budget.

• The Senior Services Department serves approximately 2,500 people on an annual basis, ranging from in-home health care assistance, unmet financial needs and social activities. A millage renewal election will take place in August.

• The former county courthouse property and the townhouses in Leland were sold to local residents and the properties are back on the tax rolls.

• All six labor contracts were mutually and peacefully settled in December 2017 for two years.

• For the sixth year in a row, the county has no pending lawsuits and no employment labor issues.

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