5 things to watch at the next City Commission meeting

Fall 2016 Homecoming
CMU fraternity and sorority members volunteer their time to collect trash and clean up local residential neighborhoods as part of the “Greeks Clean the Streets” program. The program will be recognized during the April 24 City Commission meeting. 

Here are 5 things to watch at the April 24 City Commission meeting…

  1. “Greeks Clean the Streets”: Mayor Kathy Ling will read a proclamation recognizing the “Greeks Clean the Streets” program, a partnership comprised of the fraternities and sororities at Central Michigan University and the City of Mt. Pleasant. Since the program’s inception in 2012, close to 665 students have volunteered their time during 22 events to beautify and better the residential student neighborhoods.
  2. 2017 Citizens’ Academy participants: Mayor Ling will present certificates to the 19 participants of the 2017 Citizens’ Academy. The academy took place over the course of seven Tuesday evenings and the participants learned about the various facets of our local government.
  3. National Historic Preservation Month: Mayor Ling will read a proclamation declaring May 2017 as National Historic Preservation Month. This special observance celebrates the role of history in our lives, and recognizes that historic preservation is essential for revitalizing neighborhoods, fostering local pride and maintaining community character while enhancing livability.
  4. Human Rights Ordinance: A resolution to reaffirm the City’s Human Rights Ordinance will be presented. Adopted nearly five years ago, the Human Rights Ordinance outlines the City’s commitment to diversity, inclusion and non-discrimination, and assures the City will continue to provide protection from any violations of this ordinance.
  5. Brush pickup options: The City Commission will consider several options for free brush pickup.

To see the full City Commission agenda and packet for April 24, 2017, click here.

Mount Pleasant City Commission meetings are held at City Hall on the second and fourth Monday of every month. Meetings begin at 7 p.m.

PEAK volunteer earns United Way award

MAGGIE United Way AwardPEAK program volunteer Maggie Klumpp is among the 2017 recipients of the LIVE UNITED award for her continuous dedication to the Mt. Pleasant area’s after-school program. Presented by the United Way of Gratiot & Isabella Counties, the award honors key volunteers for their work to improve the community.

Nominated for the award by PEAK Coordinator Mary LaChance, Klumpp donates her time to the PEAK participants at West Intermediate School five days a week. “Maggie attended PEAK until she graduated high school and has since been a wonderful volunteer and addition to our team,” said LaChance. “She always greets everyone with a smile and high five, and encourages the current PEAKers to never stop reaching for their goals.”

LaChance calls Klumpp a positive role model for students and a “staple” of the PEAK program. “We are so glad Maggie is continuing to be a part of our PEAK family by graciously volunteering her time with us,” said LaChance. “She is truly an inspiration.”

Sytsema named Mt. Pleasant police lieutenant

dsytsemThe City recently announced the promotion of Detective Don Sytsema to police lieutenant. Sytsema has dedicated 22 years to the Mt. Pleasant Police Department, serving first as an officer and later as detective.

As lieutenant, Sytsema will oversee day-to-day operations of the road patrol and detective bureau, and will be responsible for duties related to crime analysis and prevention. He will also coordinate special operations with other area law enforcement agencies, among many other tasks.

“We are very confident and pleased with Don’s decision to be a part of the police administration team,” said Police Captain Andy Latham. “Don is a creative and analytical thinker who uses his head and his heart to make decisions. This lends to an inclusive leadership style that is well received and embraced by those around him.”

Sytsema is looking forward to the new challenge. “My vision is that our department will continue to use and explore new technology to support the solving of crime,” he said. Sytsema also envisions continued police engagement with our community and businesses, as he is committed to cultivating positive relationships.

Sytsema will fill the role of lieutenant beginning April 16.

5 things to watch at the next City Commission meeting

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Here are 5 things to watch at the April 10 City Commission meeting…

  1. Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) tree planting: The City Commission will consider authorizing a bid award for the purchase and planting of new trees and vegetation along portions of the Chippewa River. This project is part of the GLRI Grant Program in cooperation with the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe to improve the Chippewa River corridor.
  2. Capital Improvement Plan: The commission will receive the 2018-2022 capital improvement plan, which details the projected infrastructure projects for the next five years. A public hearing will be set for May 22 to obtain public input.
  3. Adult Softball League fees: The commission will consider an adjustment to the team and participant fees for the 2017 Adult Softball League. These recommendations are based on the goal to have the adult leagues be self-sustaining for the direct costs, a comprehensive review of the City’s expenses and projected number of teams, and new rental rates implemented by CMU for use of its fields.
  4. Brush pick-up options: The City Commission will consider authorizing a one-time service of brush pickup for residential units in the City during the week of May 15, 2017.
  5. Appointments to Michigan Medical Marijuana Facilities Licensing Act (MMMFLA) ad-hoc committee: Mayor Kathy Ling will announce the appointment of the members of the MMMFLA ad-hoc committee.

To see the full City Commission agenda and packet for April 10, 2017, click here.

Mount Pleasant City Commission meetings are held at City Hall on the second and fourth Monday of every month. Meetings begin at 7 p.m.

Riverside Cemetery spring cleanup has begun

Spring cleanup has begun at Riverside Cemetery. All materials on grave sites must be removed by April 15 or they will be discarded. Plantings may be placed beginning May 1. Riverside Cemetery is open daily from dawn to dusk.

For further information or questions, contact the Parks & Recreation Office at 779-5331.

Hop your way to Finch Fieldhouse on April 8 for the Great Egg Scramble

Join Mt. Pleasant Parks & Recreation, 95.3 WCFX and Graff of Mt. Pleasant for the Great Egg Scramble on Saturday, April 8 at Finch Fieldhouse (Campus of Central Michigan University – between Bellows and Preston streets). The celebration begins at 12:30 p.m. and admission is free. Canned goods will be collected for the Isabella Community Soup Kitchen.

Youth ages 2-10 will scramble for plastic eggs, candy and prizes. The event will also include crafts, games, face painting, refreshments and the opportunity to meet Peter Cottontail! Rain or shine, you don’t want to miss the fun and festivities.

Scramble times are scheduled by age group: Ages 2-3 at 1 p.m., ages 4-5 at 2 p.m., ages 6-7 at 2:30 p.m., and ages 8-10 at 3 p.m.

The Great Egg Scramble is made possible by Mt. Pleasant Parks & Recreation, 95.3 WCFX, Graff of Mt. Pleasant, Sam’s Club, Isabella Bank, Soaring Eagle Waterpark and Hotel, and Celebration Cinemas.

For more information, call (989) 779-5331 or visit www.mt-pleasant.org/recreation.

President of Strong Towns to speak in Mt. Pleasant

Strong Towns 2017 Flyer

See the Strong Towns 2017 Flyer

Charles Marohn, president of Strong Towns, a national nonprofit working to strengthen financial resilience in America’s towns and cities, will lead a series of activities in the City of Mt. Pleasant on Thursday, April 13. During this interactive event, participants will learn Strong Towns’ principles of financial solvency, incremental development, local economic growth and bottom-up activism as they apply to the City of Mt. Pleasant and the surrounding region.

“We are excited to welcome Strong Towns to our community and share their message,” said City Planner Jacob Kain. “Mr. Marohn is a leading national advocate for strong communities and I believe members of our community will find his message resonates and provides a framework for planning for our future.”

All are encouraged to attend the April 13 events, including public officials, local change-advocates, business owners and residents.

First, Mr. Marohn and City officials will lead attendees on two walking tours in the community. The first tour begins at 2 p.m. and will focus on Mission Street. Interested participants should meet at the northwest corner of S. Mission Street and Fairfield Drive. The second tour will focus on Downtown Mt. Pleasant. Interested participants should meet at Town Center (northwest corner of Main and Broadway).

Later, a public Curbside Chat will take place at 6 p.m. at Mt. Pleasant City Hall (320 W. Broadway) and will focus on the question, “Why, despite all the growth America has experienced, do our cities struggle financially just to accomplish basic tasks?” This stunning presentation is a game-changer for communities looking to grow more resilient and obtain true prosperity during changing times. In the second half of the presentation, Mr. Marohn will speak about issues specific to Mt. Pleasant and open the floor for discussion with attendees.

As part of his visit, Mr. Marohn will also lead meetings with City staff and officials.

Information about the event can also be found on the City’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/mtpleasantmi.

About Strong Towns:

Strong Towns is a national media organization whose mission is to advocate for a model of development that allows America’s cities, towns and neighborhoods to grow financially strong and resilient. Strong Towns reaches an audience of more than 80,000 readers and listeners per month, and has over 1,600 members. Learn more at http://www.strongtowns.org.

 

5 things to watch at the next City Commission meeting

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Here are five things to watch at the March 27 City Commission meeting…

  1. Receipt of 2016 Annual Report: The City Commission will receive the 2016 Annual Report, a 14-page packet documenting the highlights of 2016. To read the 2016 edition, click here.
  2. Ad-hoc committee on Michigan Medical Marijuana Facilities Act (MMMFLA): The City Commission will consider the proposed composition of the MMMFLA ad-hoc committee, specific charge of the committee and a timeline for their work to be completed. The committee will research MMMFLA and provide a recommendation to the City Commission on suggested parameters and elements to include in a draft ordinance(s).
  3. Timber Town 2.0 donation funds: The City Commission will consider allocating $53,800 of Timber Town 2.0 donations to cover costs from the demolition; add signage, rubberized walkways and patio areas; and renovate the original wooden lodge and covered seating areas. It is also recommended the Commission approves the purchase of a wheelchair accessible play feature if additional in-kind donations are received. 
  4. Public hearings on rental house licensing rates/fees: There will be two public hearings regarding changes to rental housing license fees and fines. Members of the community may provide input on the proposed fee increase for rental housing licenses as well as the proposed ordinance amendment to increase the penalty for owners and property managers who fail to obtain rental housing licenses. 
  5. City Hall security cameras: The Commission will consider the purchase and installation of a security camera system that would cover the exterior of City Hall, including the parking lot and public entrance. 

To see the full City Commission agenda and packet for March 27, 2017, click here

Mount Pleasant City Commission meetings are held at City Hall on the second and fourth Monday of every month. Meetings begin at 7 p.m.

Volunteers needed for Timber Town 2.0 community build in May

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The City of Mt. Pleasant is seeking volunteers for the construction and installation of the Timber Town 2.0 playscape at Island Park.

“Community Build Week” will take place May 17-21 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day. Throughout the week, professional builders will guide community members through a variety of tasks, accommodating all levels of skill.  Participants may attend the entire day or sign up for a five-hour shift – 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. or 12 to 5 p.m. Lunch will be provided for the morning shift, and dinner will be provided for the afternoon shift.

On Saturday and Sunday, May 20 and 21, activities will be available onsite for the children of those volunteering. The activities planned are suitable for children ages 5-12.

Sign up to volunteer at http://www.uwgic.org/timbertown. Additional project information can be found at www.timbertownmp.org and www.facebook.com/timbertown2.0.

The community build of Timber Town 2.0 is possible because of the generosity of several community members, businesses and organizations. Earlier this year, the City of Mt. Pleasant reached its $156,000 fundraising campaign goal for the playground project. Timber Town 2.0 is a one-of-a-kind, universally accessible play structure that will replace the original 1994 version of the playground.

Latham named captain of Mt. Pleasant Police Department

Andy LathamAndy Latham has been named captain of the Mt. Pleasant Police Department. Latham began his career with the City as an officer more than 20 years ago, and has since served as sergeant and lieutenant.

In his new role, Latham is looking forward to the opportunity to connect with community members. “I hope to continue our tradition of excellent police work while making our department more personable and approachable,” said Latham.  He hopes this will lead to more interaction between officers and the community on a social level.

As captain, Latham says he also plans to learn new phases of police administration while working with and supporting staff in any way he can.

Latham replaces the department’s former captain, Paul Lauria, who took the helm as the City’s director of public safety/police chief in February.