Southfield Mayor Brenda Lawrence, supported by the City Council, recently urged shutting down a badly deteriorating section of Greenfield Road.
It wasn’t the city’s call, however. Officials for the Oakland County Road Commission say there’s no way they will close the road because it is a main artery with numerous businesses. They will continue to patch it with replacement work slated for this summer.
Southfield’s request highlights the frustration of drivers throughout Michigan as they maneuver through the ever-mounting pothole fields on the roads.
The Michigan Legislature is considering a one-time $100 million distribution to counties and communities to help deal with the situation, but it would be only a temporary fix.
This winter has made it even more obvious that Michigan must find a long-term fix for its roads. As Gov. Rick Snyder has advocated, the state has to start putting more money annually toward repairs, which could be done through increased gas taxes and/or higher vehicle registration fees.
Pay hikes steep in Macomb
The Macomb Township Board of Trustees has approved 16 percent raises for the clerk and treasurer, increasing their pay to $85,000 a year from $73,159.
Meanwhile, the supervisor’s salary was boosted to $90,000 from $78,786, or 14 percent. Trustees gave themselves an 8 percent pay hike, to $9,000 from $8,330.
Township officials justify the raises, as they are the first pay hikes in seven years.
While some amount may be in order, these raises, especially the double digit ones, are too much, too soon.
Economic conditions are nowhere near what they were in 2007. The housing market is coming back, but it’s still down and the economy is reviving at a fairly slow pace.
It looks as though the board wants to make up for the lack of raises in one big pay boost.
The board should have taken a more gradual approach.
Union continues needless rift
The Oakland Community College Faculty Association, after a no-confidence vote, says 93 percent of its members disapprove of Chancellor Timothy R. Meyer’s work.
The vote is certainly not reflective of all college employees. Association membership is only about 290 while the college employs about 1,000 people. Also, the 93 percent represents those present at a recent meeting and not the entire faculty.
The vote continues the rift between the administration and some old-school faculty personnel, who are afraid of losing power that they should have relinquished years ago. The union has had too much input on scheduling and other matters that belong with the administration.
Meyer’s disapproval comes because he is trying to deal with such issues as a revenue shortage and the changing needs of the community.
To his credit, Meyer is trying to work with the entire staff to improve the college. The faculty is guilty of what it is accusing Meyer of doing — refusing to change with the times.