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Ballot proposal challenged

Clerk clarifies claims for fire hall/community center

August 6, 2012
By KURT HAUGLIE - DMG writer ( , The Daily Mining Gazette

FRANKLIN TOWNSHIP - On the ballot for Tuesday's election, there will be a question about bonding for a proposed community center in Franklin Township, but one resident is concerned incorrect information about the center and a proposed fire hall to be built with it has been circulating.

If constructed, the proposed fire hall would serve Quincy, Franklin and Hancock Townships and Boston. However, on Tuesday's ballot, there is only a request for bonding of the community center for a loan from the U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development program not to exceed $600,000.

Resident Mary Schoos said if approved, all of Franklin Township will be assessed for the community center.

"It's been 'hush hush' about who belongs to the community center," she said.

Schoos, who is also Houghton County Clerk, said if approved Tuesday, the community of Ripley would be assessed for the community center, also.

"Ripley's not in the fire district," she said. "They will be in the community center."

Schoos said no millage for the fire hall will be levied in September.

"You cannot levy anything until it is passed," she said.

The earliest the fire hall levy could be on the ballot is for the November election, Schoos said.

She circulated a petition for a referendum asking that residents be allowed to vote for the fire hall.

"The township board is able to bond without the consent of the people unless there is a referendum on the issue," she said.

The signatures on the petition were verified, Schoos said, and she expects it will be on the November ballot, although that isn't certain, yet.

Schoos said most levies in Franklin Township expired in 2011, except the 1.5 mills for garbage collection, which was discontinued.

Schoos said in principle she isn't opposed to the fire hall/community center proposal.

"I'm not against either one," she said. "However, I want the people to be able to vote."



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