June 18: Freddie's pot delivery service has opened up service to Brighton, Howell, Fenton, South Lyon, Hartland areas.

Can Amazon be far behind?

Tort lawyer Barry Goodman, of Goodman Acker, said his company started small, delivering to customers within about 15 miles of his Clio, Michigan store.  They expanded the service area into Bay City, Saginaw and Midland, then to Mt. Pleasant and Big Rapids. Now they've set their sights on the prohibitionist deserts of Livingston and Oakland Counties.

According to the Livingston Daily, under Michigan law each delivery driver is limited to 10 deliveries or 15 ounces of product per excursion.  What began as a three hour wait and $45/order minimum has become a requirement of 48 hours advance notice and a $200 minimum order. They've driven up to three hours, according to Goodman. It's unclear whether that's one way or round trip.

Jennifer Timar's June 18 Livingston Daily report introduces Freddies and Northfield Township's half dozen proposed pot businesses. Her report includes photos and locations of the vacant and unused Whitmore Lake locations and storefronts they want to fill, also an interview with Northfield Township Manager Steven Aynes. Aynes slightly misrepresents the Township voters' support for legal marijuana as "evenly divided." That's not true. Two to one in favor is a better picture.

Scroll down for the PC meeting Agenda and packet. But that's boring. From the owner's photos on google image, here is Freddie's:

 

FreddiesApril2020RecreationalBizOpening

 This photo is dated April and may represent the opening of their Recreational Marijuana business. The photo is the owner's, cropped.

 FreddiesOrdersLinedUpOnCounter

Lined up and doing business.

 

FreddiesDisplayCaseLogoSucks

This logo is a case study in why serious businesses hire graphics design and branding pros.   

 

FreddiesThisIsWhyYouHireProBranding

The Freddie's lobby.  Why you should hire professional decorators, part 2020...

 

FreddiesLogoWhichStillSucks

Freddie's was named for Co-owner Nicole Goodman's father.

 

Freddies:   

  • Address: 10092 N Dort Hwy, Clio, MI 48420
  • Hours: 10:00AM-10:00PM
  • Phone: (810) 547-7276
  • Freddie's Menu on Wikileaf 

 

MLive Photographer Sarabeth Maney's photoessay comprises much nicer interior shots of Freddies than the Google Image freebies I posted.

6/18/2020:  Pot delivery comes to Livingston County, shops proposed in Whitmore Lake, by Jennifer Timar, The Livingston Daily

4/10/2020:  Clio-area marijuana dispensary expands delivery service to Bay, Saginaw and Midland areas, by Winter Keefer, MLive

4/2/2020:  Michigan Pot Dispensary Freddie's Moves Up Launch Of Home Delivery Service, by Nina Zdinjak, Benzinga

3/31/2020:  Clio-area marijuana dispensary begins delivery service, by Winter Keefer, MLive

3/19/2020:  Clio-area dispensary offering curbside marijuana pickup during coronavirus pandemic, by Winter Keefer, MLive

2/22/2020:  Recreational marijuana shop opens in Clio, ABC-12,

2/20/2020:  Clio-area dispensary to start selling recreational marijuana, MLive.com

12/16/2019:   Thetford Township Board votes to ban recreational marijuana, by Ron Hilliard, Mid Michigan NOW

12/3/2019:  Thetford Twp residents talk legal cannabis, by Ron Hilliard, Mid Michigan NOW

 

 

7/1/2020 Northfield Township PC meeting Agenda

7/1/2020 Northfield Township PC meeting packet [potbiz applications]   [This is a HUGE download: 146MB]

6/17/2020 Northfield Township PC meeting minutes, draft

 

I've indexed this Board meeting in a different way, using Youtube Chapters.

You can watch the meeting in the old fashioned way, start to finish, in the window below.

Or you can click "Youtube" at the bottom of the video, and open up in Youtube itself.

You'll see the chapters on the timeline. And you'll see those same chapters in the description

below the Youtube window.

This is easier to try than to explain.  Click here and try it!

Or you can do it the hard way. Press the play icon in the video window below. When it fires up, at the bottom of the window, click where it says "Youtube."  You'll be transported to the YouTube viewer. The timeline will become segmented into the parts of the meeting I listed in the meeting description below the video window.  Scrubbing left and right on the timeline will show you the text identifying each chapter or segment. Scrubbing is a trade term for sliding the time marker forward and backward in the timeline.  The timeline is that horizontal bar at the bottom of the video window that shows you where you are in a video.

 

So, you can scrub around the timeline to get to the point of the meeting you want to watch.  - Or you can click the time markers in the description.

Like I said, this is easier to try than to explain.  Click here;  just do it!

  

 

 

 

by David Gordon

The Northfield Township Planning Commission (PC) last night rescheduled public
hearings for July 15 on six marijuana business applications.


Originally planned for last night, the hearings couldn’t be held because the legal
notice called for “in-person” hearings and COVID-19 restrictions made that
impossible.


The public is invited to speak at the July 15 meeting on all six applications but the PC
doesn’t plan on making any decisions that evening.


The PC at its next meeting on Aug. 5th will review site plans from three of the six
applicants. The other three will be reviewed either at a special meeting or at the
next regularly scheduled PC meeting on Aug. 19 th .


The choice of which will be the first three plans reviewed will be based on the order
in which the applications were submitted back in May.

-30-

By David Gordon May 12, 2020

  • Township to lose about $350,000 in state revenue sharing funds. No specific plan to deal with shortfall offered by Manager Steven Aynes. Without budget cuts, the township’s $1.3M Rainy Day Fund will be empty in less than four years, says Treasurer Lenore Zelenock.
  • Board’s plan for $5M sewer tank hits snag. Green Oak homeowners claim Northfield is ignoring legal “deed restriction” and the public notice for bonding may need a redo. Despite dire economic forecast, Board plunges ahead – sewer bills to jump 40%.
  • Board counters $100k offer from developer for 75 Barker Road firehouse with $112k counteroffer, adding “conditions” that Township attorney says are likely unenforceable.
  • Planning Commission asks for direction on four additional marijuana business options such: a “bar-like” operation that permits smoking pot but no sales; larger plant inventories for growers, and a “temporary event license” for both the sale and consumption of pot at a public or private event.
  • Under deadline pressure, Board picks two road projects for limestone application; allocates $97,700 overall including dust control. $15k will not get Road Commission matching funds. Road Subcommittee, headed by Aynes, provides no recommendations leaves Public Safety Director Bill Wagner out of the loop.
  • Board and Manager continue “failing to communicate or coordinate” pattern. Budget and road maintenance decisions are again “last minute” despite having months to prepare. Trustee Otto blames Covid-19.

Budget Cuts

The township is expected to lose half of its State Revenue Sharing funds this year (about $350,000) because of economic impact of Covid-19, it was revealed at last night’s Board of Trustees meeting.

Manager Steven Aynes, asked for budget advice on the shortfall three weeks ago, provided no plan or specific recommendations. “Be as conservative as possible,” he said. The Board directed him formulate options for the May 26 meeting.

Supervisor Marlene Chockley proposed meeting the shortfall by drawing down the Rainy Day Fund and cutting “to the bone” the Community Center budget, reorganizing the Building Department and selling off township property.

Treasurer Lenore Zelenock, after the meeting, said if no cuts were made and revenue sharing doesn’t drop further, the existing Rainy Day Fund of $1.3M would cover the shortfall for about four years.

“Fortunately, the Board has done a good job building up the Rainy Day Fund during the last three years,” she added.

Trustee Tawn Beliger wanted to eliminate all funding for “People’s Express”, the extremely popular and long-running service that provides transportation to the elderly and sick at reduced rates.

Beliger also suggested raising Building Department fees and, as is her habit, advocated dropping all memberships to service and educational organizations (such as the Huron River Watershed Council).

The Board heard input on the budget crisis at the Call to the Public from resident David Gordon (the author of this story) who suggested the entire shortfall could be offset by eliminating the position of Township Manager (more than $100,000 a year) and drastically reducing the cost of planning.

“Taxpayers have spent about $800,000 for the Manager since the position was created in 2013. I don’t think we’ve gotten our money’s worth,” he said.

“In the last few years, the planners have helped update the Master Plan and create both a Downtown Strategic Plan and a North Village plan for the waterfront park property by the U.S. Post Office. We’re all set with planning for a while,” he added.

The budget shortfall will be on the May 26th agenda for more discussion; a public hearing is scheduled for June 9 and final adoption for the June 23rd Board meeting.

The Board and the public were invited to send budget ideas to Aynes (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) and/or his assistant, Jennifer Carlisle (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).

Sewer Expansion “Backup”

A new problem for the proposed sewer tank surfaced when Green Oak Resident Jessica Meissner claimed a “deed restriction” exists on the property that would force relocating the current site of the controversial $5M retention basin. (attached – It’s Pg. 164 of the Board packet.)

“You ought to respect and honor your own stated intentions and obligations,” said Meissner. “You plan to build this 40’-tall tank on property designed as a buffer between the Waste Water Treatment Plant (WWTP) and our homes.” She added, “I don’t hear any concern from the Board about taking on a public debt in the middle of a giant crisis.”

Although Meissner’s claim is expected to receive scrutiny, her comments were not well received by the Board.

Beliger was dismissive. “I’m confident there are no issues,” she said. Trustee Jacki Otto was curt: “It’s up to Green Oak to alert us”. Trustee Janet Chick apologized to Meissner, saying the Board “can’t help. It’s a legal thing.”

The Board continues to struggle with how to pay for the expensive sewer expansion projects.

Bending to public pressure, the Board agreed to consider floating Revenue Bonds rather than General Obligation Bonds for the $5M sewer holding tank project (and presumably for the related sewer line expansion expected to cost $3M).

Every resident, even those not on the sewer system, would be “on the hook” with General Obligation Bonds. A Revenue Bond would only obligate sewer customers, but Revenue Bonds would cost more.

Chockley argued that the plant expansion benefits the entire community and therefore rural residents on private septic systems should not object to “co-signing “ for the debt. In response, rural residents have asked if WWTP customers would be willing to finance private septic tanks and fields throughout the township.

As required by law, the Board advertised last month its “intent to borrow” for the tank which starts at 45-day countdown for any public referendum to challenge the project. Changing the type of bonding would require a new announcement and reset the 45-day clock.

There was confusion as to whether Revenue Bonds carry the same referendum option for residents as General Obligation Bonds. Beliger, who favors spending for infrastructure (and the Manager), pushed for a vote to restart the clock immediately, but Otto said she wanted a written opinion from the bond attorney before proceeding.

“The Board should think about what they want,” Chockley advised.

75 Barker Road Firehouse “Fire Sale”

During its 3 1/2–hour Zoom meeting, the Board voted to sell the historic, shuttered firehouse at 75 Barker for $112,500 to a Grand Rapids developer who has refused to budge from his original $100,000 offer.

The firehouse recently was appraised at $215,000, but the Board decided to keep some of the parking on the site and a new value was set at $125,000.

The Board placed conditions on its $112,500 counteroffer. They insisted the developer guarantee that construction begins within a month of signing a contract; that it be completed with a year, and that the property would not be sold for 10 years. If sold sooner, the township would receive half of the profit.

Township Attorney Mike Fink said he didn’t believe the conditions could be enforced, saying, “I could get a client out of that”, but his advice went unheeded.

The conditions are designed to address concerns that the developer might simply hold the property in an unimproved state and flip it at a huge profit because earlier this year, a marijuana entrepreneur offered nearly $500,000 for the property, but wanted assurances he would be granted a pot license. The Board refused.

If the next Board changes the restriction on distances between pot stores, flipping the property could potentially create a $400,000 profit.

It was uncertain if the Grand Rapids developer will accept the Board’s counteroffer.

After the unanimous 6/0 vote to sell the property with conditions (Trustee Wayne Dockett, who opposes the sale, was absent with notice) Board members expressed their views.

Chockley exclaimed, “Wow, we’re making progress!” Her enthusiasm aligned with her earlier cheerleading for the developer and her defense of his low offer.

Chick said she hopes the developer understands “he’s getting a great price”.

Beliger said she felt “blessed” to have the developer in the community.

The Board is expected to give the local Kiwanis Chapter, which has been using the firehouse for years, time to remove all the donated items now stored there.

Road Maintenance

The Board agreed to include $97,700 in next year’s budget for road maintenance; thousands less than last year. The county Road Commission will contribute about $82,000 in matching funds.

In addition to the usual dust suppression treatments, two roads will receive upgrades of added limestone - Six Mile Road (from Auburn Dr. and Earhart Road) and Nollar Road (from Six to Seven Mile Roads.)

Failure to Communicate

Zelenock and the public (me) both criticized the Board and Manager’s continuing failure to communicate, co-ordinate and follow through on assignments and projects.

“We need to be more prepared,” said Zelenock, adding that she fully expected to get budget recommendations from Aynes sooner, and expressed disappointment that Chief Wagner was left out of the road maintenance discussion.

At 10:30 p.m., after a long 3 1/2 hours, Chockley congratulated the Board for doing such a good job and moved to adjourn.

-30-

 

Township Resident John Taylor unwittingly risks his life to speak out about Park Plans to an unlistening Board 

"Growth for growth's sake is the ideology of the cancer cell." - Edward Abbey 

 

Why was the board forced to meet?  To approve paying the monthly bills.

But, you say, we've got an expensive Township Manager!?  Can't he just pay the bills?  Why does the Board have to meet in the center of a Coronavirus cyclone, blow off everything bu the pretense of the social distancing recommended, just to pay some bills?

This is because of the longtime shenanigans of Trustees Otto and Chick.  They micromanage the Township Manager.

Since the position of Township Manager was established six years ago the Board has withheld the authority the Manager would have required to approve paying bills. For over six years this Township has paid over $125,000/year for a Manager who can write only small checks.  $125,000/year has grown to over $150,000 per year, about $20,000 per year per employee actually under the Township Manager's management.

Watching the meeting with the LiveAgenda is the quickest way.  What's not obvious from the LiveAgenda is that I left in about six minutes of prelude to the Call to Order. Click the Call to order, then scrub left.  Aynes, Beliger's husband, Taylor, and the boardmembers are blithely wandering the Boardroom, unaware of the danger, chatting.

3/17/2020 Northfield Township Board meeting LiveAgenda

 

>> A Brief Video about Disinfection and EPA Labels << 

>> The CDC List of Disinfectants EPA Labeled/Approved for Use
Against the Human Coronavirus, Last Update 3/19/2020<<

 

The day before this meeting I voiced some concerns to the Township Board and Manager.

These emails were sent to Manager Aynes, Chief Wagner, Supervisor Chockley, Treasurer Zelenock, Clerk Manley, and Trustees Otto, Chick, Dockett, and Beliger. Copies went to Assistant Manager Carlisle 

Email 1 Monday, March 16, 2020 4:23 PM

Perilous Times: A couple of points re the 3/17/2020 Board meetings
 

Will Attorney Fink be attending?  If so, he'll be fresh off a plane from his Mexico vacation. He mentioned the vacation at the 2/25 meeting to explain why he wouldn't be attending the 3/3 meeting. Hopefully he enjoyed the sun and the language but through no fault of his own, he passed through the squeeze points where travellers are concentrated in airports and customs, where they unknowingly share contagions.

 Boardmembers sit nowhere near the recommended minimum of six feet apart at Boardroom desks.  The six foot metric is in any case a comforting fiction.  Sneeze propelled droplets can travel 6 meters at 50m/s before splashing on someone's face.
 
As far as I know, the open cell foam ear cushions on the Sennheiser RS120 headphones Trustee Dockett uses cannot be cleaned, at least not to the degree which now seems necessary.  These headphones are used exclusively by older citizens, those most vulnerable to the ravages of COVID-19.  Trustee Dockett is mortally endangered by this pathogen.  Mary Devlin, Craig Warburton, and other headphone users are also.  Stats show a current 17% hospitalization rate. This isn't a groan and go to work flu.

These four sets of headphones are grabbed on a first come, first serve basis.  No one knows who used them before, who touched them before, who wiped their nose with their hands before putting them on or taking them off.  No one knows how long it's been since their last use or more importantly, whether if the virus lives, dies, or is somehow sustained on the headphone's polymer surfaces.  They will require rigorous disinfection between uses.  That's the Township's responsibility.

Multiply this necessity by every square inch of surface in the Board room, the table of meeting agendas outside the Boardroom, the doorways, doors, and door handles, the stairway bannisters, the lobby chairs where you force people to wait for closed sessions to end. Literally anything people can touch on their way in or out of a public meeting, be it large as a door or as small as an elevator button, must be treated as potentially lethal.  All those surfaces are the Township's responsibility.

Please make this warning and caution part of the official Township record.

 - Jim Nelson
 

Township Response 1  Tue, Mar 17, 2020 at 11:38 AM

On Tue, Mar 17, 2020 at 11:38 AM Steven Aynes <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.> wrote: 
Following further discussion with Attorney James Fink, I have recommended and the Supervisor is in agreement that the Closed Session is cancelled for tonight. Mr. Fink has confirmed that this is ok with him and the delay should be understandable to the Judge assigned to the case.

We are evaluating further matters concerning the meeting including those raised by various citizens.

Steve Aynes

Northfield Township Manager

Township Response 2 Tuesday, March 17, 2020 9:31 AM

From: Jennifer Carlisle
Sent: Tuesday, March 17, 2020 9:31 AM
To: Jim Nelson; Steven Aynes; Marlene Chockley; Lenore Zelenock; Kathy Manley; Tawn Beliger; Wayne Dockett; Janet Chick; Jacqueline Otto; William Wagner
Subject: RE: Perilous Times: A couple of points re the 3/17/2020 Board meetings 

 

This has all been discussed and addressed in our office. 

I spent quite a long time Friday disinfecting the upstairs.  I used chlorox wipes on the banisters, lights switches, pop machine, elevators, water fountains, door handles, table tops, chair arms and backs (in the lobby and in the board room), keyboards, microphone stands, head sets (although I only saw two so I will have to go back up and look for the other two).  Then I used Lysol Spray on all the fabric chairs, microphones mouth pieces, toilets, sinks, audience chairs.  Faye disinfected on Saturday also.  There has not been anyone else up there since.  The upstairs tenants are closed for at least two weeks. 

The Board of Review members are having their final meeting today and I will again go up and sanitize after they are done.  Then I will be rearranging the board room so as to promote social distancing.

Steve has been speaking with the attorney to figure out the plan of action since there is a pending settlement that needs discussion.

Thanks,

Jennifer Carlisle

Assistant to Township Manager

734-449-2880 ext. 18

 

Township Response 3  Tue, Mar 17, 2:42 PM

jchick711
Mar 17, 2020, 2:42 PM (4 days ago)
to Jennifer, me, Steven, Marlene, Lenore, Kathy, Tawn, Wayne, Janet, Jacqueline, William

Thank you for all your hard work Jennifer. So sorry it fell on you!

Janet

 

Email 2  Tue, Mar 17, 4:12 PM

It sounds like your administrative assistant, Jennifer Carlisle, did a lot of work. I commend her spirit and pride.

The Township is making the claim that every surface has been disinfected and will be again disinfected following today's Board of Review.

In her own words, Ms. Carlisle devoted "quite a long time friday disinfecting" with help from "Faye disinfecting on Saturday also."  The exact amount of time expended is vague and unbracketed.

That doesn't meet much of a standard of proof that every accessible surface was wetted and remained wet with an EPA labeled - for COVID-19 - disinfection, for the EPA label required amount of time.

Waftings of clorox wipes and lysol misted at upholstery fabrics may impress the usual "it's good enough" constituency.  But it won't impress a tort lawyer's consulting engineers.  It won't impress a Coroner.

They'll calculate the surface area of every touchable thing in the room, the room's ingress, egress, restrooms, everything. The volume of available liquid disinfectant in the wipes and its evaporation rate will tell them how long a surface wetted by a wipe will remain wet. Thin films evaporate in seconds, not the minutes of wetting typically EPA label required for Coronavirus.  Did Carlisle hold the wipe stationary over each square inch of "disinfected" surface for the necessary amount of time?  If so, how did she finish "disinfecting" everything in that room in part of a day?

Ms Carlisle performed the "disinfection" in a finite amount of time liberated from her usual administrative staff duties.  You need to document the time she alloted to the task and the amount of EPA labeled disinfectant used.  You own this claim.

Whether it was even possible in that amount of time for every surface to be wetted for the EPA label required amount of time can be precisely calculated.  Frankly, given the multitudes of chairs and tables in and around the Boardroom, it hardly seems plausible.

I looked at the lysol wipes under my sink.  10 seconds to "sanitize" but 4 minutes wetting is required to disinfect.

Business as usual won't cut it.  Good intentions aren't good enough.  This could mean someone's life and death.
 
 
Township Response 4   Tuesday March 17 4:23 PM

Township Manager Aynes contacted me by voice phone. He asked me to handle the video.  He said there had been a power outage and everything had been scrambled, whatever that means.

 

 

 Email 3  Mar 17, 2020, 5:24 PM

Jim Nelson <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Tue, Mar 17, 5:24 PM (4 days ago)
to Steven, chickj, beligert, chockleym, ottoj, dockettw, zelenockl, manleyk

The dance of death has begun.

Officials have announced that 22 people at a Chicago Nursing Home have tested positive for Coronavirus.

How'd we get to this point? How did this happen?

One short sighted and selfish,

  • "but i've got reservations,"
  • "the appointments are so hard to get,"
  • "I've been waiting all year for this cruise,
  • "the tickets were so expensive,"
  • "it can't happen here,"
  • "I've got it so I'm gonna fly home where,"
  • "this meeting was so important,"
  • "but that city is four hours away,"

rationalization at a time.


 Board Response 5  Date: March 20, 2020 at 3:25:50 PM EDT

Township Office Temporarily Closed

The Northfield Township Office will be CLOSED through Friday, March 27, 2020. Staff will be working from home whenever possible with limited access to voicemail and e-mail.