07-30-2020 Ballot proposals before voters on Tuesday; such as public safety, 911 answering and disp


BUDDING HISTORIAN… celebrated his 11th birthday with his family as special guests at the North Berrien Historical Museum in Coloma. Wagoner family pictured (from the left): dad Peter, mom Taia, sister Starla, birthday boy Ziah, and brother Micah.


Ballot proposals before voters on Tuesday; such as public safety, 911 answering and dispatch, senior centers, school operations seek citizen approval in Berrien and Van Buren counties

By Annette Christie Van Buren County proposals Van Buren County voters will be asked to approve a 9-1-1 service charge. The language on the ballot reads as follows: Shall Van Buren County be authorized to assess a county 9-1-1 emergency services charge on monthly billings to each service user located within Van Buren County at a rate not to exceed $1.83 each month in addition to the default rate of $1.17 each month for a total maximum allowed rate of $3.00 each month (replacing the current monthly surcharge) for the period of July 1, 2021 through June 30, 2025 to be used exclusively for the funding of 9-1-1 emergency telephone call answering and dispatch services within Van Buren County? City of Hartford voters will be asked to renew their current fire apparatus and equipment millage. The ballot language reads, “Shall the limitation on the amount of taxes which may be assessed against all property in the City of Hartford, Van Buren County, Michigan remain 1.4185 (1.4185 for each $1,000) on taxable valuation of real property for the years 2021 through 2024 to provide funds for purchasing fire apparatus and equipment for the use by the Hartford Fire Department; (the estimate of the revenue the City will collect if the millage is renewed and levied for the first year is approximately $53,014.00); this is a renewal of a tax that will expire in 2020 and such renewal tax levy to be contingent upon approval by the Hartford Township of a similar renewal?” Hartford Township voters will be asked to also renew the fire apparatus and equipment millage. The ballot language reads, “Shall the limitation on the amount of taxes which may be assessed against all property in the township of Hartford, Van Buren County, Michigan, remain 0.7069 ($0.7069 mill for each $1,000) on taxable valuation of real property for the years 2021 through 2024 to provide funds for purchasing fire apparatus and equipment for the use by the Hartford Fire Department; (the estimate of the revenue the Township will collect if the millage is renewed and levied for the first year is approximately $53,281.88); this is a renewal of a tax that will expire in 2020 and such renewal tax levy to be contingent upon approval by the City of Hartford of a similar renewal?” Hartford Township officials are also asking for the renewal of the road millage. The ballot language reads as follows: Shall the limitation on the amount of taxes which may be assessed against all property in the Township of Hartford, Van Buren County Michigan, remain 1.4185mills ($1.4185 for each $1,000) on taxable valuation on real property for the years 2021 through 2024 for the purpose of township road maintenance and construction; which levy will raise in the first year of the estimated sum of $106,918? This is a renewal of a tax that will expire in 2020. Berrien County proposals Voters in Berrien County will be asked to renew proposals that support law enforcement and public safety, 9-1-1 emergency system proposal, and the Senior Centers. The ballot proposals read as follows: In support of law enforcement, criminal justice and public safety for the citizens of Berrien County, including the areas of drug enforcement, education and treatment, shall the limitation of the total amount of taxes which may be assessed against all taxable valuation of property in Berrien County liable for taxation be set at thirty-five hundredths of one mill ($.35 per each $1,000.00 of taxable valuation, as equalized). The above said millage represents a renewal of the millage rate of 35 hundredths of one mill ($.3500 cents per $1,000 of taxable valuation, as equalized). The authorization to levy said millage is for a period of four (4) years being 2021, 2022, 2023, and 2024. It is estimated that the amount to be generated from the total millage rate in the first year of the levy (2021) will be approximately $2,888,518. In support of continued operation of a 9-1-1 Emergency System within Berrien County, shall the limitation on the total amount of taxes which may be assessed against the taxable valuation of all property in Berrien County liable for taxation be set at forty-five hundredths of one mill ($0.45 cents per each $1,000 of taxable valuation). The above said millage represents a renewal of the millage rate of forty-five hundredths of one mill $.4500 per each $1,000.00 of taxable valuations, as equalized). The authorization to levy said millage is for a period of four (4) years being the years 2021, 2022, 2023, and 2024. It is estimated that the amount of revenue to be generated from the total millage rate in the first year of the levy (2021) will be approximately $3,713,809. In accordance with PA39 of 1976 and in support of continued operation of the senior centers in Berrien County, shall the limitation on the total amount of taxes which may be assessed against the taxable valuation of all property in Berrien County liable for taxation shall be set at thirty hundredths of one mill ($.30 cents per each $1,000 of taxable valuation). The above said millage represents a renewal of the millage rate of thirty hundredths of one mill. The authorization to levy said millage is for a period of four years being 2021, 2022, 2023, and 2024. It is estimated that the amount of revenue to be generated from the total millage rate in the first year of the levy (2021) will be approximately $2,475,873. Hagar Township Hagar Township voters will be asked to renew their fire truck fund millage. The ballot language reads, “Shall the expired previous voted increase in the tax limitations imposed under Article IX, Section 6 of the Michigan Constitution in Hagar Township, of .5 mills ($0.5 per $1,000 of taxable value), be renewed at up to .25 mills ($0.25 per $1,000 of taxable value) and levy it for 10 years, 2021 through 2030 inclusive, for the Fire Truck fund, which .25 mills will raise an estimated $42,570.00 in the first year the millage is levied. Watervliet Charter Township Watervliet Charter Township will have several millage renewals to consider for fire protection, police protection, public safety, and roads. The ballot language will read as follows: Shall the expired previous voted increase in the tax limitations imposed under Article IX, Sec. 6 of the Michigan Constitution of Watervliet Township of 1.0 mills ($1.0 per $1,000 of taxable value), reduced to 0.9896 mills ($0.9896 per $1,000 of taxable value) by the required millage rollbacks, be renewed at and increased