Breitung to consider ordinances for blight, dangerous structures

QUINNESEC — Breitung Township Board has directed municipal attorney William Fahey to draft new ordinances on blight and dangerous structures.

During recent meetings, the board has discussed whether to adopt the International Property Maintenance Code in part or in its entirety. Board Supervisor Denny Olson and Trustee Rich Wales wondered if the code was overreaching while Breitung Township Superintendent Steve Mulka and Trustee Aaron Rochon considered it a good tool for enforcement.

Mulka then drafted a single ordinance on blight and structures that blended the township’s existing policy with parts of the IPMC to suit the township’s needs.

But, Fahey said, most townships have separate ordinances for blight and dangerous structures. Rather than create a single ordinance for the two topics, Fahey recommended the board allow him to draft custom ordinances on each. He estimated on Monday the work would cost about $1,500 and be done before the board’s Aug. 9 meeting.

Mulka later told The Daily News the township hopes to include a number of items in the new ordinances, in particular a mechanism to bring properties with ongoing issues before the district court as misdemeanor offenses rather than civil infractions.

Otherwise, “Things will function mostly as they always have,” Mulka said.

In other business Monday, the board:

≤ Adopted a conflict of interest policy required for the receipt of funds from the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. While the township did have a conflict of interest policy, the new language addressed federal funds.

≤ Authorized the transfer of geographic information system files to a county-wide server maintained by Colligo GIS. Though Breitung Township still would retain their own GIS database, utilizing Colligo’s server would save about $2,000 in fees, Mulka estimated.

≤ Approved meals and lodging for Department of Public Works Superintendent Jason Davis and Water Operator Chris Wilcox to attend water department training on regulatory monitoring and sampling techniques at the Siskiwit Reception Hall and Conference Center in Calumet on July 28.

≤ Approved $20 to cover the cost of tickets for board members to attend Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s luncheon at the Upper Peninsula State Fair on Aug. 20.

≤ Agreed to use the board room in the township hall to host the Dickinson County Township Meeting on Aug. 16. The board set a $450 spending limit for food and drinks provided at the meeting.


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