A decision whether to allow marijuana retail establishments in South Haven Township and dissolving the Village of Breedsville are among the ballot proposals voters in Van Buren County will decide in the upcoming Nov. 8 general election.
South Haven Township resident Andrew Newell led a petition drive earlier this summer to override a portion of a township ordinance – passed four years ago – to prohibit marijuana retail businesses from operating within the township.
Newell gathered 126 valid signatures from South Haven Township registered voters in September to force a referendum vote.
If voters approve the referendum, the township would be able to allow a minimum of three adult-use marijuana retail establishments to operate in commercial areas of the township.
If there are more than three establishments that want to locate in the township, the proposed referendum ordinance would allow the township board to place a moratorium on new businesses or allow them to proceed on a case-by-case basis.
BreedsvilleIn the village of Breedsville, voters will be asked whether to dissolve the village as a municipality and be incorporated into Columbia Township.
There have been similar ballot petition drives over the past several years to dissolve the village, according to Village President Steven Rogusta.
“The village board is working hard for its residents. Now the people will have to decide,” Rogusta said. “The village board was not involved in the proposed ballot language or the petition. This was done by a resident within the township.”
Bloomingdale Public Schools
School district voters will be asked restore the total 18 mills of operating millage for non-homestead properties for three years that has been reduced by the Headlee law. Specifically, the ballot proposal asks voters approve a proposal to increase the millage by up to 2 mills for a period of three years, not to exceed the total of 18 mills for operating levy allowed by state law.
Voters here will be asked to renew a 0.5-mill levy for five years to maintain and improve roads, structures and signage in Arlington Hill Cemetery. If approved, the millage would raise $19,000 in its first year.
Voters will be asked to decide whether to approve a new eight-year, 1-mill operating millage for Senior Services of Van Buren County to provide activities and services for older adults. Doing so would replace the previous 0.5-mill levy. If approved, the new millage would raise an estimated $68,656 the first year.
Voters will be asked to restore the township operating millage rate to 1 mill over the next five years. The millage was reduced to 0.7308 mills over the past several years due to the Headlee millage rollback law.
If approved, the 1-mill ballot proposal would recover $28,404 in reduced revenues for a total of $104,516 for the first year.
Voters here will be asked to approve a 0.5-mill levy for parks and recreation improvements and developments over the next four years. If approved the millage would raise an estimated $68,055 in the first year.
Lawton Community Schools
Voters will be asked to restore the district’s operating millage for non-homestead properties to 18 mills to make up for reductions that have occurred due to the Headlee amendment. The ballot asks voters to renew the 17.7-mill non-homestead levy and increase it up to 0.5 mills for up to four years, but not to exceed 18 mills.
Voters will be asked to approve a two-year, 0.5-mill levy renewal to pay for services and activities for older adults in the township. If the proposal passes, it would generate about $37,753 in the first year.