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Keeler Township appoints temporary clerk, sets 2023 meeting dates

The Keeler Township Board met on Tuesday, Feb. 7 at 7:30 p.m., at the new Keeler Township Hall.

Temporary Township Clerk

Angela Sexton was appointed the Temporary Keeler Township Clerk, while Current Township Clerk Carl Davis is out on medical leave. Davis is expected to be out for up to eight weeks. Due to the amount of work completed by the township clerk the board found it pressing to appoint, through a resolution, a temporary clerk for the time being. Sexton was also appointed the Recording Secretary for the board.

2023 board meeting dates set

The board approved the 2023 meetings for the remainder of the year. Meetings are traditionally held the first Tuesday of the month, unless there is an extenuating circumstance. They have approved the following 2023 dates: March 7, April 4, May 9 - due to the state Special Election being held on May 2, June 6, July 11 - due to Independence Day falling on the 1st Tuesday, August 1, September 5, October 3, November 7, December 5. The township has updated the website to reflect the approved dates at the time of publication.

Commissioner’s Reports

Van Buren County Road Commissioner Rick Boze was in attendance and shared with the board and public that they have hired the next Managing Director, Bret Witkowski. Witkowski will be part-time until March and will be working beside current Managing Director Dan Bishop until his retirement at the end of the month. Boze also shared that they have been doing tree trimming in the township, trimming is to be finished for the season by April 1. They have also approved the Fuel and Asphalt bids.

Van Buren County Commissioner Tina Leary shared with the board that the county is experiencing a high-turnover situation with administration and hopes to resolve it soon. At the January Board of Commissioners meeting they have appointed Charles Norton, as the Interim Deputy County Administrator. Norton was previously the Information Services Director for the county. Leary also answered questions and will return to the board with more information about the ARPA funding and what the township is waiting on with the recent updates.

Public Safety Reports

Keeler’s newly assigned Sheriff’s Deputy, Jon Horton, gave his report on the month and shared that the previous duty number will remain the same. Deputy Horton shared that his assignment is to the Keeler area for the next two years and he is from the Paw Paw area. The township board also named Horton the Code Enforcement Officer moving forward.

Keeler Township Fire and Rescue had eight EMS calls and three fire calls in January. The department training was on HIPAA and Blood-borne Pathogens. The township board approved the hire of a prospective firefighter.

Sister Lakes Volunteer Fire Department submitted a report for December and January. For December they had seven calls, one in Keeler. In January they had four calls, one in Keeler. They had training on Ice Rescue recently.

Pride Care Ambulance submitted a report for December. They had six Priority I calls and five Priority II calls, with an average response time in December of 15:04 minutes. They noted the extended times had to do with extreme weather conditions, concurrent calls with no assistance or from being dispatched from a neighboring township.

Public comment and correspondence

Supervisor Don Blackmond acknowledged a Keeler Township resident’s request to have their correspondence read aloud at the meeting, and did so for all in attendance.

There was one public comment, addressed by Trustee Morin, that they acknowledged the township website is currently a work-in-progress and they would promptly add the 2023 meeting dates to the website after they were approved that night.

Next Keeler Township meeting

The next meeting will be held on Tuesday, March 7, 7:30 p.m. Meetings are held in the Board Room at the Keeler Township Hall. Regular meetings are held the first Tuesday of the month.

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