12-26-2019 City of Hartford annual audit receives high marks; HOPE Resources in Coloma awarded $20,

HAPPY TO HELP Hartford High School Student Council members teamed up with the Hartford Lions to pack 150 holiday food boxes to be delivered to families throughout the community of Hartford. The Lions began the annual HELP campaign in 1946 as their very first local service project. They mark over seven decades of spreading holiday cheer to those in need. Each box contains a turkey, milk, bread, potatoes, vegetables, stuffing, apples and of course, the cranberry sauce, and some Christmas candy for an extra treat. Once the boxes are ready to go they are delivered by members of the Hartford Fire Department, Hartford Police Reserves, and Boy Scouts.

City of Hartford annual audit receives high marks

By Jon Bisnett

At the combined Hartford City Commission workshop and business session on Monday, Dec. 16, the commissioners received and approved a report from Ryan Marschke of Hungerford Nichols as he summarized the findings in the annual audit of city financials. Marschke noted an unqualified opinion with a 9-month operational cash reserve.


City Hall will be closed on December 31 and January 1 in celebration of the New Year.

Van Buren County Commission report

County Commissioner Mike Chappell reported on three countywide millage requests that will be on the March 2020 ballot. (1) A Road Commission Renewal for .9769 mills. The current millage expires in 2019 and will fund ongoing maintenance, repair and reconstruction of public roads for four years. (2) A renewal of Public Transit funding in the amount of .2471 mills. Current millage expires also in 2019. The renewal would extend funding through 2023. (3) A new request in the amount of .10 mills over four years for Veterans Services, providing dedicated services to honorably discharged veterans in Van Buren County.

Commissioners accepted a grant from the State Court Administrative Office for $716,795 to service the Specialty Courts of the county including, Drug Treatment Court, Family Court, Swift and Sure Sanctions Probation Program, Sobriety Courts and Recovery Courts for both youth and adults.

Proposed property annexation for provisioning center

Property owner Lori Cross visited the council for the second time to pursue the possibility of the city annexing the family parcel located in the township just south of I-94. Cross has been approached by the Green Door provisioning center in Bangor in regard to developing a medical marijuana provisioning and grow facility on the property. After being rebuffed by the township, Cross is hoping the city may consider annexation, since the city has already approved the required ordinance to permit such an operation.

Commissioner John Miller spoke to clearly express his thoughts that he would under no circumstances endorse a provisioning center at the location Cross proposes. “It is our job as a council to promote and develop the City of Hartford. It would serve no purpose for the city to annex property just to put a retail business at the exit which would not encourage visitors to come downtown and patronize other local business, restaurants and the like.” Miller did go on to say that a grow operation would not have that same effect, since it is not a direct retail business and would consider that type of operation acceptable, should other factors of annexation be favorable. Mayor Hall said the council will further review the matter.

Minutes & Reports archived

Departmental reports and minutes from November, including November 18 Business Meeting were approved and archived.