September 17, 2014
LETTER TO THE EDITOR

Vote isn't fair

By Glen Rice - Arenac Township
Posted 12/10/08

Isn’t it nice Arenac Township has the advantage of voting on another tax increase one month after a general election? With our tax statements comes a survey stating that this is the second time the board asked the residents to respond to a garbage collection issue. Apparently the first time, there weren’t enough people interested or the wrong answer was given.

We in the township have garbage collection service if we want it, so it’s a money issue.

The part that caught my eye was the part of the survey saying unreturned surveys will be YES VOTES. Yes to what? To be fair, our treasurer/assessor said this was a suggestion presented by the representative from the one attending collection service. If enough people don’t return their survey and a yes vote is counted, will we all be billed? For what and how much?

Now, is this a survey or a ballot? If it’s a ballot, how many were sent? Were they sent to registered voters or property owners? We live in a farming community where some people have multiple pieces of property, which gives them multiple votes. Landlords have multiple properties, so multiple votes. I have one property, so one vote. If this is a vote, every registered voter should have ONE. If it’s a survey, what happens if we don’t receive any surveys and yes votes are counted? Is there interest now that all the surveys are not returned?

If this is a survey, I’d expect another public hearing. If it’s a VOTE, then I expect a township garbage collection – the residents will have spoken – NOT! That’d be a manipulation of power by elected officials, putting the responsibility of their action on you. That would be an unfair election, some people getting multiple votes and some not getting one vote.

Contrary to comments made at the township meeting Dec. 4, this isn’t a democratic process, but a “you get what we want whether you like it or not.”

Residents, I’m not speaking for or against this issue. I’m saying to preserve our right to vote on tax increases, we should have the township board revisit this current process and do it in a fair manner for everyone, not just some. You may disagree with me – until the vote goes the other way from your desires on the next issue.

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