Posts Tagged ‘Clinton County’

Two seats on the 16-member MAC Board of Directors will be filled by the membership during special elections at the 2019 Legislative Conference in Lansing.

The Region IV Caucus will meet on the afternoon of Tuesday, March 26 to fill a vacancy that runs through August 2019. All six MAC Caucuses meanwhile will meet on Tuesday, March 26 to fill an At-large vacancy that runs through August 2019. Details on voting procedures can be viewed here.

See MAC Region Map.

The following candidates are announced:

At-large

Scott Noesen, Midland County
I am running for the Michigan Association of Counties At-large Board seat at the 2019 MAC Legislative Conference.

After a 33-year career with Dow Chemical Company, I retired in 2008 and started up my own consulting firm to provide guidance to institutions on how to integrate the concepts of Sustainability into their business strategies. In 2015, I was elected as a county commissioner for Midland and am now in my third term as a commissioner. I currently chair the Midland County Finance Committee and serve on the Administration and Operations Committee. In 2017, I joined many of my fellow Michigan commissioners in Washington, D.C., for a first-ever meeting with the president’s staff to discuss issues of importance between our national government and its impact on county government

As of January 2019, I also chair the Northern Michigan Counties Association (NMCA), which gathers members from the northern most counties of Michigan and provides guidance to these counties on issues of common interest.

Over the last several years, I have served on both the Finance and Environmental Committees of MAC. Most recently, I was named by Gov. Rick Snyder as the MAC representative on the newly created Water Asset Management Council, a broad-based stakeholder group charged with providing guidance on the critical infrastructure needs related to water, including fresh water delivery, storm and sewer water

I am keenly interested in the relationship between state and local entities and am concerned about the long-term viability of county budgets in an environment of continued pressure from the state with new initiatives mandated by the state with little or no backup funding. As a board director, I will work hard to preserve the rights of the counties and make sure our voice is heard in Lansing and Washington.

Kyle Harris, Saginaw County
I was first elected to the Saginaw County Board in 2016, where I’ve been serving on the County Services Committee and Labor Relations Committee. Since first being elected, I wanted to be involved with MAC and have been serving on the following committees: Agriculture and Tourism; Transportation; and General Government, Chair. Outside of MAC, I have spent nine years working in the Michigan Legislature, assisting with various political campaigns and working with the family business that installs and refinishes hardwood floors.

I am interested in serving on the Board to advance my commitment and contributions to MAC and, by extension, the citizens of Michigan. To name a few specific things I would like to work on: increasing transportation funding to local roads by working with MAC staff and the Legislature to reduce the amount of money being siphoned off from PA 51 dollars; “pushing back” against the Legislature in their relentless effort to place more mandates on counties without updating the long-outdated funding formula for constitutional revenue sharing; and “best practices” from around the country to help Michigan counties succeed in getting ahead financially and providing top-notch services to their citizens.

Monica Sparks, Kent County
Hello fellow commissioners! My name is Monica Sparks. As a Kent County commissioner, I am ready to roll up my sleeves and get to work. May I earn your vote to serve as your advocate?

EFFORT: I will show up and invest my time in building alliances with local, state and federal officials to benefit all MAC. members regarding key issues that affect our counties.
EDUCATE: The full potential of MAC services is not being accessed by our county officials. I will learn to be a voice to share MAC services, to grow our membership and so current commissioners can utilize the educational and advocacy components needed to fully serve constituents.
EMPOWER: I will advocate for and support MAC members in their role. Our commissioners, county administration and staff work hard. Don’t they deserve to be confident and strong as they deliver much needed services in their county?

WHAT DO I VALUE AND SUPPORT?

  • Economic Mobility
  • Mental Health Services
  • Our Environment
  • Veteran and Senior Services
  • Treatment Courts
  • Farm Bill and Agriculture
  • Infrastructure Renewal
  • Affordable Housing
  • Those with Special Needs
  • Parks, Recreation and Tourism

I AM AN EXPERIENCED SERVANT LEADER:

  • Kent County Commissioner
  • Finance & Physical Resources Committee (Kent County Board of Commissioners)
  • Former, Planning Commissioner, City of Kentwood
  • Former Zoning Board of Appeals Commissioner, City of Kentwood
  • School Board President, Vista Academy
  • State of Michigan Licensed Real Estate Broker 20+ years
  • Certified SCORE Business Mentor and Counselor
  • Named ‘Diversity Business Leader of the Year’ Corp Magazine 2009
  • Selected ‘One of the 50 Most Influential Women,’ Grand Rapids Business Journal 2018
  • Wyoming Kentwood Chamber of Commerce
  • West Michigan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
  • Advocates for Seniors Issues, Diversity and Legislative Committee
  • American Legion Auxiliary, D.W. Cassard Post 208

I recently joined MAC committees for Agriculture and Tourism; General Government; and Environmental, Natural Resources and Regulatory Affairs.

I am accessible, inclusive of all and would like to answer any questions you may have.
PHONE: 616.813.9397
EMAIL: MonicaSparks4KCC@Gmail.com
FACEBOOK: Monica Sparks Kent County Commissioner
Thank you for your time and consideration.

Region 4 (Thumb and Mid-Michigan)

Dwight Washington, Clinton County
After graduating from Harvard (M.Ed) and Michigan State University (BA & Ph.D), I initially pursued a career in health and human services, then made a mid-professional career change to environmental services. This background has been helpful during my two terms as a county commissioner, while specifically serving as a member of the Clinton County Public Health and Parks and Recreation committees.

I am an active member of MAC’s Health and Human Services and the Environmental committees. I am also a member of the National Association of Counties’ Environment, Energy & Land Use (EELU) Steering Committee, and will be part of the Inaugural Meeting for the Parks, Open Space and Trails Subcommittee. I am passionate about protecting Great Lakes water for present and future generations. I also advocate to state and federal leaders about the need for high quality water and water security, which includes; septic systems, storm water, invasive species, toxic plumes, water table levels, beach closures, potable water, lead pipes, river boating, and fishing holes. I have been nominated to the EPA Great Lakes Advisory Board and am optimistically waiting the completion of the review. Further, I have a keen interest in helping to hone a sustainable MAC position on present and future water challenges and new policies (including, but not limited to, “the Waters of the US” and the “Great Lakes Compact).”

As a new commissioner, both the board chair and the county administrator highlighted to me that the weight of our decisions can have an impact 10 to 15 years into the future. This level of responsibility makes me proud of my county and helps me to recognize the importance of wise decision-making. I’d like to represent Region 4 with the MAC Board of Directors to maximize the community benefits of our counties’ park systems and public health departments to improve local quality of life. Thank you for your consideration and, hopefully, vote.

Donald Parker, Livingston County
My commitment to public service has shaped my entire professional career. Although I am incredibly fortunate for my over 14 years of service to my constituents as a Livingston County Commissioner, I now seek the opportunity to advance the interests of all counties in the State of Michigan as a member of the Michigan Association of Counties Board of Directors. I believe that my deep appreciation for the vital role of county government, coupled with my dedication and passion, make me a strong candidate for the Board.

Recently, I have been at the forefront of MAC’s efforts in the area of indigent defense, advocating on behalf of the counties before both the State Senate Appropriations Committee and the Michigan Indigent Defense Commission (MIDC), which will continue to be one of my highest priorities if elected to the Board. Also, as a Trustee on the Michigan Counties Worker’s Compensation Fund, I have demonstrated the ability to work collaboratively with other counties toward a common goal.

In addition, I am an attorney with over 14 years of experience in private practice. In 2007, the Michigan Attorney General appointed me as Livingston County Public Administrator, where I act on behalf of the State of Michigan in the administration of statutorily specified Estates and Decedent issues.

The opportunity to serve on the Michigan Association of Counties Board of Directors would be a tremendous honor. My experience in managing difficult assignments that involved molding consensus among multiple stakeholders in an organization of approximately 700 employees would provide real benefit to MAC and its mission. Thank you for your consideration.

Tuscola County's Matthew Bierlein is sworn in by Judge Amy Gierhart as his wife, Mindy, and children look on. (Rod Sanford Photography)

Tuscola County’s Matthew Bierlein is sworn in by Judge Amy Gierhart as his wife, Mindy, and children look on. (Rod Sanford Photography)

The Michigan Association of Counties (MAC) elected board officers for its 2017-18 term and added two new board members at the MAC Annual Conference, held Sept. 24-26 at the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island.

Matthew Bierlein, a Tuscola County commissioner, was sworn in as MAC’s 110th president since the organization’s founding on Feb. 1, 1898. During his first address as president to the association, Bierlein called for greater engagement with all of Michigan’s 622 county commissioners.

Joining Bierlein on the board’s executive team are: First Vice President Ken Borton, an Otsego County commissioner; Second Vice President Veronica Klinefelt of Macomb County; and Immediate Past President Shelley Taub, an Oakland County commissioner.

“Our new leadership team brings a great variety of skills and experiences to our board,” said Stephan W. Currie, MAC’s executive director. “We have a great team in place as we begin to implement our strategic plan adopted by the board at the Annual Conference.”

In board elections held at the conference, MAC members in attendance elected three new board members:

  • Joe Bonovetz of Gogebic County
  • Richard Schmidt of Manistee County
  • Jim Storey of Allegan County

Also serving as directors on the board for the 2017-18 term are:

  • Donald Disselkoen (Ottawa County)
  • Philip Kuyers (Ottawa County)
  • Christian Marcus (Antrim County)
  • Joseph Palamara (Wayne County)
  • Robert Showers (Clinton County)
  • Joe Stevens (Dickinson County)
  • Hugh Crawford (Oakland County)
  • Vaughn Begick (Bay County)
  • Stan Ponstein (Kent County)

For more information on MAC, visit www.micounties.org.

In a guest commentary Sept. 5 on MLive.com, MAC’s incoming president, Allegan County Commissioner Jon Campbell, issues an alert to Michigan residents about the court funding crisis created by the Cunningham ruling: “Legislators will have a full agenda in September; however, a permanent, stable, fair fix to court funding has to be at the top of the list.” The chart below shows the annual projected impact of the ruling, if it is not changed, for several counties across the state that responded to a MAC survey. court cost chart*Circuit court costs only    
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