At approximately 12:59 a.m. on Feb. 28, 2018, an officer on general patrol at the intersection of Broomfield and Mission Street observed a vehicle commit a traffic violation.
The suspect vehicle accelerated quickly eastbound on Broomfield. The officer attempted to catch up with the vehicle and activated the emergency lights. The vehicle approached the intersection of Broomfield and Isabella and disregarded the flashing red light. The vehicle again accelerated quickly reaching speeds of over 100 mph while traveling down Isabella road. The vehicle abruptly stopped at the intersection of Isabella and High. The driver, Gonzalo Alaniz, a 23-year-old Mt. Pleasant man, was taken into custody without incident.
The front seat passenger, a 19-year-old Mt. Pleasant man, was arrested for open container and cited for minor in possession of alcohol.
Alaniz is lodged at the Isabella County Jail on charges of fleeing and eluding; driving while license suspended; reckless driving.
Here are five things to watch at the Feb. 26, 2018 City Commission meeting:
Parks Resource Leadership Award: The City Commission will recognize Director of Parks and Public Spaces Chris Bundy as the 2017 recipient of the Park Resource Leadership Award. Presented by the Michigan Recreation and Park Association, recipients of this prestigious award demonstrate outstanding contributions in the area of maintenance practice, equipment management, resource development and environmental stewardship. Read more here.
Private Swimming Pool Ordinance Amendment: An amendment to the ordinance regarding private swimming pools will be introduced. Currently, private pools are not allowed to be emptied into the sanitary sewer system. To align with federal and state requirements, the proposed amendment would state that all discharge from private pools should be emptied into the sanitary sewer system. If that method is not possible, the amendment offers two additional options. It is recommended the City Commission set a public hearing on the topic for March 12, 2018.
Ceilometer Replacement at the Airport: The City Commission will consider a resolution authorizing a contract with the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) for the replacement of the Automated Weather Observation System (AWOS) ceilometer at the Mt. Pleasant Municipal Airport. The associated budget amendment will also be considered. Vital for the safety of pilots and passengers, the AWOS provides accurate and timely weather information to pilots who fly within range of the airport. One component of the AWOS instrumentation is the ceilometer, which is used to measure the height and thickness of cloud cover. MDOT will pay for 90 percent of the cost of the new ceilometer.
Special Assessment for Alley Reconstruction: Discussion on the status of residential alleys occurred during both the 2016 and 2017 budget work sessions. As a result of those discussions in 2016, a letter was sent to property owners whose properties abut alleys that might benefit from reconstruction. The letter outlined the process for petitioning to have the City Commission consider a special assessment to pay for the cost. DPW received a petition in January for the reconstruction of the alley between Fancher and Kinney, from Locust to Wisconsin. The City Commission will consider resolutions #1 and #2 to begin the proceedings for a special assessment, tentatively determine the necessity, and set a public hearing for March 12 on the need for the project.
Downtown Fire Protection Grant Program:The City Commission will consider a resolution to amend the Central Business District (CBD) Tax Increment Finance Authority (TIFA) plan to add the Fire Protection Grant Program as an eligible project. The program is intended to provide funding to property owners in order to assist them with installing fire protection systems including suppression systems, sprinklers and fire alarms in existing commercial and residential buildings in the downtown historic district.
To see the full City Commission agenda and packet for Feb. 26, 2018, click here.
Mt. Pleasant City Commission meetings are held at City Hall on the second and fourth Monday of every month. Meetings begin at 7 p.m.
The City will begin a tree abatement project Monday, Feb. 26 near the Mt. Pleasant Municipal Airport to clear obstructions protruding into the approach slope – the path an airplane follows to land on a runway.
The project was deemed necessary by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in order for the City to continue to safely accommodate the larger planes that utilize the airport. The majority of the abatement will occur west of the airport between US-127 and South Isabella Road.
According to Airport Manager Bill Brickner, the project is not only essential for the successful arrival and departure of airplanes, it is also needed for the airport to remain a driver of local economic development and business growth.
“The airport adds about $8 million of revenue to the community each year,” said Brickner. “If the trees remain, the runway will be shortened and several of our customers who fly larger planes will have to go elsewhere to land, purchase fuel and conduct business.”
Federal and state funding will pay for 95 percent of the total project costs, with the remaining five percent budgeted in the Airport Capital Improvement Plan.
Chris Bundy, director of parks and public spaces for the City of Mt. Pleasant, is the 2018 recipient of the Park Resource Leadership Award.
Presented by mParks – Michigan Recreation and Park Association – the award is among the highest of individual honors granted by the statewide organization and recognizes professionals who demonstrate outstanding contributions in the area of maintenance practice, equipment management and resource development.
Chris has served the City for nearly 30 years, beginning his career as the director of recreation, and later assuming the role of director of parks and public spaces.
Throughout his tenure, his leadership has resulted in extensive growth and improvement within the City parks system. Chris was instrumental in the original build of the Timber Town playscape at Island Park in 1994, as well as the rebuild of the playground in 2017, working with the volunteer committee to secure hundreds of thousands of dollars in donations and coordinate hundreds of volunteers.
In 2013, Chris spearheaded the Green Maintenance Bike Initiative, reducing the use of motorized carts and introducing bicycles with trailers for the daily maintenance tasks in City parks. This effort produced a significant cost savings, reduced noise and air pollution, and gained statewide recognition.
“The list of opportunities and facility improvements Chris has made is extensive, but more impressive is his ability to plan, maintain, and think to the future sustainability of projects that will impact future generations,” said City Recreation Coordinator Steve Hofer.
Chris has also dedicated much of his career to preserving the community’s natural resources, specifically the Chippewa River and the riverbank corridor. In 2016, Chris worked in coordination with the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe to obtain Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) funds to improve the corridor connected to City park lands. These efforts protected much of the riverbank during the flood in June of 2017.
“Chris strives to set a good example and be an out-of-the-box thinker,” said City Manager Nancy Ridley. “He is most certainly deserving of recognition for the tremendous support and exemplary leadership he provides for all things related to parks and recreation in our community.”
Chris was honored at the 2018 mParks conference earlier this month. He is also the 1994 winner of the mParks Recreation Leadership Award.
Award recipients are selected based on their development of innovative programs and services, community affiliations and volunteer experiences, contributions to the profession, and more.
mParks created the video below as a tribute to Chris!
Community members of all ages – from the very young to the young at heart – are invited to the Isabella County Commission on Aging on Feb. 24 for “Bingo Bash,” presented by Mt. Pleasant Parks & Recreation, Commission on Aging and McDonald’s. This free event will allow players as many rounds of Bingo as they desire, with winners advancing to the Bonus Bingo rounds!
Prizes and free refreshments will be available. Bingo Bash will take place from 2 to 4 p.m.
The Isabella County Commission on Aging is located at 2200 S. Lincoln Road in Mt. Pleasant. For more information, click here or call (989) 779-5331.
The City of Mt. Pleasant’s Historic District Commission (HDC) is currently seeking nominations for the 2018 Historic Preservation Improvement Awards.
The awards are presented each year to honor exterior improvements of residential and commercial properties in the City of Mt. Pleasant in four areas – Preservation, Restoration, New Construction or Downtown Historic District Choice. Nominated properties must be at least 25 years old, and the improvements must have been completed between Jan. 1 and Dec. 31, 2017.
The HDC will evaluate applications that best reflect the Secretary of Interior’s Standards for the Treatment of Historic Properties. Winners will be announced in May as part of National Historic Preservation month.
Applications can be found on the City’s website at www.mt-pleasant.org/jobs or at the Human Resources office, located on the second floor of City Hall. When applying for more than one position, applicants must complete an application for each position.
The application deadline for all positions is Thursday, March 1.
Here are five things to watch at the Feb. 12 City Commission meeting:
Peacemaking Recognition Day Proclamation: Every year, Mt. Pleasant Public Schools nominates students of all grade levels who promote peace with their words and actions. Mayor Allison Quast-Lents will read a proclamation declaring Feb. 26, 2018 as Peacemaking Recognition Day in the City of Mt. Pleasant to affirm the peacemaking efforts of local youth are valued and contribute to the quality of life in the community.
Mini Grant Award: In 1999, the City received a 2 percent grant from the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe to establish an endowment fund for the purpose of strengthening capacity within neighborhoods. This fund has permitted the City to award mini grants of $500 or less to several different neighborhoods. A $500 Neighborhood Mini Grant will be awarded to the Orchard Glen Condo Association to make landscaping improvements to the entrance median of Orchard Drive, north of Broomfield Street.
Parks Resource Leadership Award:The City Commission will recognize Director of Parks and Public Spaces Chris Bundy as the 2017 recipient of the Park Resource Leadership Award. Presented by the Michigan Recreation and Park Association, recipients of this prestigious award demonstrate outstanding contributions in the area of maintenance practice, equipment management, resource development and environmental stewardship.
Airport Tree Removal and Runway Lighting: Last year, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) required changes to the approach slope at the Mt. Pleasant Municipal Airport in preparation for the installation of Precision Approach Path Indicator (PAPI) lighting upgrades on the runway. The City Commission will consider the appropriate resolutions and contracts for the necessary lighting and tree removal near the airport.
Horizon Park Donation and Improvements:As part of its 2017 improvements to the Chase Run Apartment Complex on Isabella Road, MHT Housing Inc. of Bingham Farms, donated $50,000 for improvements at the City’s nearby Horizon Park. The proposed projects will improve park access, the restroom building and sport areas, as well as add amenities such as benches, picnic tables, grills and trees. The City Commission will consider authorizing the proposed improvements and associated budget amendments.
To see the full City Commission agenda and packet for Feb. 12, 2018, click here.
Mt. Pleasant City Commission meetings are held at City Hall on the second and fourth Monday of every month. Meetings begin at 7 p.m.
On Feb. 2, 2018, at approximately 7:17 p.m., City officers responded to a domestic assault complaint in the 1820 block of South Crawford Road, also known as Country Place Apartments. Woodrow Lewis, a 38-year-old Mt. Pleasant man and his wife were arguing because Lewis believed his wife was bugging the apartment. Lewis became upset and pushed his wife up against the wall. Lewis then knocked her over a couch causing her to fall. The female left the apartment, called the police and filed a domestic assault report.
Police took a statement from Lewis’ wife and then attempted contact with Lewis. Lewis initially would not answer the door, but then came to the door with a knife 8 to 10 inches in length. The officers backed off the residence and contacted the Isabella County Emergency Services Team, a team of police officers from several jurisdictions who serve as tactical officers and crisis negotiators.
An officer obtained a domestic assault warrant for Lewis while officers continued to ask Lewis to exit the residence. Lewis attempted to start his apartment on fire by burning the drapes. Officers then evacuated residents from the apartment building complex.
The decision was made to introduce pepper spray to Lewis’ apartment to get him out of his apartment. Lewis surrendered without further incident.
Lewis was lodged at the Isabella County Jail on charges of domestic assault. Lewis remains in custody at the Isabella County Jail on the domestic assault charge and $10,000/ten percent bond.
Mt. Pleasant Police Department was assisted by the Mt. Pleasant Fire Department, Michigan State Police, Central Michigan University Police, Isabella County Sheriff’s Department, and Mobile Medical Response.