Use this link to pay your taxes online:
Notice of Public Meeting
Fife Lake/Springfield Township & Kalkaska EMS Merger
Tuesday July 21st 2020 6:00pm – 7:30pm
American Legion Post 219
Fife Lake MI, 49633
Purpose of the public meeting:
Fife Lake & Springfield Townships would like to invite the public to an information sharing session about a potential merger of service between Fife Lake EMS and Kalkaska EMS
• Information sharing followed by Q&A ____________________________________________________________________
FROM Captain Chris Clark, Grand Travere County Sheriff Department:
This property is currently owned by the State of Michigan Land Bank*.
The gun range on the Pugsley property was established in 2002 by MDOC and utilized by the SOM Department of Corrections as well as MSP. In a partnership with MDOC in 2011, the Grand Traverse County Sheriff’s Office began to use this gun range for a practice shooting range. MDOC closed the prison in 2016
*Over the course of approx. two years, Grand Traverse County, the Sheriff’s Office, the State Land Bank, Fife Lake Township and Fife Lake Area Planning Commission, worked collectively to transfer ownership of 20 acres to Grand Traverse County. This property was zoned with approval as a Public Safety Training Facility.
The property is currently being used for Public Safety training and the firearms range use schedule will be posted at fifelaketwp.com and on the front door of the Fife Lake Township Hall.
As communicated during this 2 year process the range at the zoned Public Safety Training Facility, we do not use explosives and weekend range use only occurs in the month of Sept.
We had to postpone a lot of training due to COVID 19, so this summer a lot of training has been condensed. We were unable to do training in March, April and May.
Most training these dates will occur between the hours of 8am 4 or 5pm.
Here are the tentative training dates. The training is mostly during daylight hours.
Sept 2, 7-12, 14-19, 21-26, 28-30
Fife Lake Township Newsletter June 2020
On behalf of Fife Lake Township, we hope this letter finds all of you safe and healthy during this pandemic. Our offices have been closed for business, but the officers can be reached by telephone at: Supervisor Forwerck 231-631-1750; Clerk Street 231-263-0056; Treasurer Sorrow 231-879-4656; Zoning Administrator Rodriguez 810-287-8637. Messages can also be left at 231-879-3963 (office). Appointments can be made as necessary. Township Board meetings did not take place during March and April. The Township board held their regular meetings on Thursday, May 28, 2020 at 6:00 p.m. and June 25, 2020 as a Zoom Meetings.
Census: We need you to fill out your CENSUS information. I recently filled out mine online and it is very easy. Go to my2020census.gov to respond. The current census is extremely important because it will impact our budgets for the next ten years. This year and next year’s budgets have already been impacted by the loss of sales tax during the pandemic. Our constitutional revenue sharing is based on this formula: Population x Distribution Rate = Payment Amount. The population count comes from the census count from Fife Lake Township. If you are not reporting to the Census Bureau and you live in Fife Lake Township, we will lose your share of dollars. Our current census count is 1,684. Our April revenue was $24,315 and August is estimated at $18,206. To add bad news to that dilemma, in August of 2021, when the new census count kicks in, we lose a count of 650 because of the closure of Pugsley Prison. That, based on the current count of 1,684, now becomes 1,034. As an example, today’s distribution rate is $14.439. When you multiply the loss of 650 x 14.439, it equals $9,385.35 x 6 payments per year = $56,312 from a prior revenue sharing income of $147,856, that would leave us with an estimated income of $91,544 from revenue sharing. The things that could impact our budget in a positive way are new tax dollars due to new homes and businesses in the township plus real estate sales and the general increase in taxes due to the annual CPI increase. We hope our businesses rebound, but we have been in a serious state of inactive businesses. Some of our businesses have been able to keep their doors open and for that we are thankful, not only because we can utilize their businesses, but they still pay state sales tax that helps with our local revenue sharing.
Help keep the outlet, wetlands and lakes pristine. It has been brought to our attention that property owners are dumping leaves in the outlet and in the wetlands. We know it is difficult to remove yard leaves since we cannot burn them. Maybe you and your neighbors can borrow a trailer or collectively pay someone to pick them up for you.
GTC Road Commission - Supervisor Rick Zenner: After the 4 to 5 inches of rain we received, some of our gravel roads have taken a substantial hit. Some sections are worse than others. We will plan to blade the really extensive areas. This will more than likely cause a loss of some brine. At our discretion and our cost, we will brine certain areas again, after all the roads have been regraded. As these roads will need to be evaluated and spot repaired, there will be up to a two-week delay for crews to repair all sections of road. Final brining will be completed by June 14, 2020. Thank you in advance for your patience and cooperation in this matter as we get around to fixing these problem areas.
Grand Kal Road – needs two new culverts that may be replaced by one.
Lakeshore Drive continues to deteriorate. The road committee will begin to meet again in June, if our Governor allows us to. We will ask our Road Commission to attend so we can strategize.
Terry Street Clerk’s Corner
This has been and will continue to be a very busy year for elections. The March election is behind us and we are now looking forward to the August 4, 2020 Primary and the November 3, 2020 General Election. The following represents a few notes with important dates about elections:
*If you plan on running for a village office, you must file an affidavit of identity and a nonpartisan nominating petition by 4:00 p.m. on July 21, 2020 at the Township Clerk’s office.
*Candidates without political party affiliation seeking partisan offices file qualifying petitions and affidavit of identity for the November general election, is due July 16, 2020 by 4:00 p.m.
*Write in candidates other than write in candidates who seek precinct delegate positions file a Declaration of Intent for the August primary by 4:00 p.m. on July 24, 2020 at the Township Clerk’s office.
*Write in candidates who seek precinct delegate positions file Declaration of Intent forms with the Township Clerk for the August primary by 4:00 p.m. on July 31, 2020.
All voters, please keep in mind, we will be following the prescribed precautionary measures that deal with the COVID 19. We will be installing sneeze panels between workers and voters and making use of hand sanitizers throughout the polls. Social distancing will be practiced to the best that we can. We will be following the most current guidelines as they change from now to the general election in November. Our goal will be to provide the best place possible for our voting public. Should you have any questions, please feel free to call the Clerk, Terry Street at 231-879 3963. Thank you in advance for coming out to vote. We will see you at the Polls.
Property tax information is available online at bsasoftware.com. Choose the top red box to the right “Search Online Property”, choose “Grand Traverse County”, then “Fife Lake Township”. An account needs to be created. Your own information is free; $2.00 for detailed information.
Tax Collection dates will be posted on fifelaketwp.com and on the door at our office.
Hours for collection are Saturdays from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. unless posted otherwise.
The final date for tax collection will be posted as soon as we have the date from our county treasurer.
Greetings from Zoning Administrator Deborah Rodriguez:
Since the construction industry was given the go ahead to open up, please remember to submit a Zoning Application to the Zoning department for all permits that are required prior to any construction. The application is available on our website. Zoning hours are Mondays from 12:00 PM - 4:00PM, Wednesdays from 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM and Fridays from 9:00 AM - 1:00 PM.
Dollar General Development/U.S.131 development entrance:
Currently, the MDOT project at the intersection of U.S.131 and Fife Lake Road which extends from the roundabout to South Boardman is scheduled to be done in 2021. This will provide more defined, safer turning lanes at this intersection. In addition, the following will be included to address safety concerns using the Dollar General location (development entrance): 1) At the time this intersection project is done, there will be a fully paved shoulder on the north side of U.S. 131 which will allow south bound traffic to get off the main south bound lane, and exit into the property; 2) Also, the project will include an extension of the middle turning lane to the entrance of the development parcel for north bound, left hand turns into the development property. The Grand Traverse County Road Commission and MDOT determined there was not enough safe distance to locate an entrance on Fife Lake Road, therefore the U.S.131 location was picked. MDOT describes this factor as “stacking room”, which would be the potential backup of traffic onto U.S.131 caused by a short entrance distance from this intersection north to the entrance of development. This is unlike the entrance to the business on the east side of Fife Lake Road which does not create a stacking problem onto U.S.131. Please be aware this entrance into the development will be utilized for future businesses that may locate on this parcel. Dollar General will be located on five (5) acres of this sixteen (16) acre parcel. Factors for this particular business location include traffic counts, and parking for up to thirty vehicles. A Dollar General falls under the Fife Lake Township Zoning Ordinance, Commercial Allowed Uses, General Retail Establishments.
Notes from MDOT Permit Engineer Jeremy Weist:
MDOT and the road commission met with the client on January 30th to review access to the 16 acre parcel. It was decided to create a new commercial driveway onto US-131 approximately 600 feet south of the Fife Lake Road intersection as it is currently depicted in the attached plans. The new commercial driveway will be the only access to US-131 for the 16 acre parcel. Future development or land divisions of the parcel would be required to share this driveway.
This entrance has been reviewed and approved and a permit will be issued upon receipt of the following:
1. An approved Land Division, that states that this is the only access to the 16 acre parcel from US-131.
2. Receipt of the below described bonds, certificate and insurance which are typically required for work in the right of way.
BP Fuel Station located on Boyd Street. We now have two businesses that offer fuel to our residents and travelers. A site plan review of the BP station (adjacent to the Village Market) will be placed on the Planning Commission agenda on July 14, 2020, as is required by our zoning ordinance. This also is an allowed use in our commercial zoning.
This property is currently owned by the State of Michigan Land Bank*. This prison closed in 2016.
*Grand Traverse County purchased twenty acres that houses a gun range. This gun range was established in 2002 and utilized by the SOM Department of Corrections. In 2011, the Grand Traverse County Sheriff’s Department began to use this gun range for a practice shooting range. No practice shootings are scheduled at this time. Practice shooting dates will be posted at fifelaketwp.com and on the front door of the Fife Lake Township Hall.
Grand Traverse Economic Development (GTED) is the commercial investment and holding company owned by the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians. GTED is working on a plan to partner with North Bay Capital on the redevelopment of the prior Camp Pugsley site to establish the Grand Traverse Science & Technology Innovation Center (GT STIC). This will create new jobs and training opportunities for Tribe members, Veterans and others at the site. Currently they have right by use for Manufacturing/Fabricating, Warehouses and Contractors, Facilities and Yards. Bay Shore Steel Works plans to renovate GT STIC facilities and purchase new equipment to expand their manufacturing service line with a Water Jet system.
Submitted letter to MAMA for development of MI SLFI Command & Control Center
5 acre environmentally controlled & scientifically engineered greenhouse projects
Data Centers & Telemedicine Call Center
New Battery Technology Manufacturing
Containerized Power / RAE Helix Wind Turbines
Telecom (5G) and Satellite Communications
Security & Access Control Systems
New Tenant Placement
Expand Product Sourcing, Warehousing & Distribution
New Teaming Partners & Profitable Business Acquisitions
Multiple Grant Pursuits – DOE, USDA, MEDC DoD STEM, DOL, etc. for projects
Future ‘Netherlands’ Greenhouses – Fruits & Vegetables Production, Packaging, Distribution
The Village of Fife Lake and Fife Lake Township received a Rotary Charities Grant to update our Master Plans into one plan. Planner Elise Crafts has been hired to oversee this project. The public will be invited to participate in this visioning process. More details will be available at a later date.
EMS/Fire Update from Chairman Rodriguez:
Kalkaska Memorial Hospital has approached Fife Lake Township/Springfield Township to consider having them supply our EMS services including a Paramedic located in our EMS Building where our ambulances are housed. This would be contracted within our current millage. Renewal of our Ambulance and Fire millage will be on the ballot this year. Thank you for your past support of this valuable service!
Cemetery News – Summer 2020
Due to the COVID-19 restrictions, the spring cleanup was delayed. Nick Crim did an excellent job cleaning Fife Lake Cemetery after the restrictions were lifted. Jake Trowbridge was awarded the 2020 contract to maintain the grounds at Fife Lake and Walton cemeteries. On Memorial weekend, we discovered issues regarding the water in Fife Lake Cemetery. The water has now been restored to the cemetery. Please accept our apologies for any inconvenience this may have caused you. If you have any concerns regarding the cemeteries, please contact Clerk Street at 231-879-3963 or 231-263-0056 or Sexton Plamondon at 231-499-1578.
Please fill out your census report. You can go online as instructed in the census mail you received. I did mine recently and it is so easy. Go to my2020census.gov.
Due to the seriousness of the transition of Covid-19, no one will be allowed in the township hall without protective covering over your face that covers your mouth and nose. A bandana can be used if you do not have a medical facial mask. This is for the protection of not only yourself but those who you come in contact with at the office. Also, remember social distancing of six feet and Wash Your Hands!
The clerk is accepting nomination petitions, but you should call Clerk Street at 231-263-0056 to set up a time to turn your petition in.
The EMS/Fire meeting scheduled for 4-13-2020 has been cancelled.
The Planning Commission meeting for 4-14-2020 has been cancelled.
The April 23rd Township Board Meeting has been cancelled.
Grand Kal Road Update (5-20-2020):
The Grand Traverse County Road Commission has completed most of this project. There is deteriation on at least one of the culverts, therefore culvert replacement is necessary. EGLE/DEQ permits are required to do culvert replacement, therefore it may take some extra time.
The road commission has brined our roads.
Go to Elections for election dates and times.
Watch this site for meeting cancellations.
After attending a meeting with officials at Grand Travere County and learning that the County and City of Travere City offices have been closed until further notice, we are closing our township hall.
Due to the seriousness of this contagious COVID-19, the Fife Lake Township offices will be closed until further notice.
We are posting the following contact phone numbers:
Appointments can be scheduled if necessary.
Supervisor Linda Forwerck, 231-631-1750
Clerk Terry Street, 231-263-0056
Zoning Administrator Debbie Rodriguez, 810-287-8637
Our March 26th township board meeting has also been cancelled.
Emergency responders are housed in the east end of our building and the public needs to respect the need for their protection as much as possible. They will not be allowing anyone, other than emergency personnel, to have access into their areas of our building. This includes the EMS and fire barn facilities.
Medical Marihuana Lottery:
The Medical Marihuana lottery drawing was held on Wednesday morning at 10:00 a.m.
Results are posted on the front door of the township hall.
Many public gatherings, meetings, etc. are being cancelled because of COVID-19. We will update our website when we have more information. We have posted several informational messages on our front door.
Nate Alger, Grand Traverse County Administrator has kept us posted on the latest Coronavirus information.
Information has been posted on the Fife Lake Township front door (134 Morgan Street, Fife Lake).
Go to Grand Traverse County Health Department COVID-19 for information covering Households, Schools and Daycare Centers, Businesses, Healthcare Professionals, Travel and Effective Disinfectants for Cleaning.
Grand Kal Road Project will be completed as soon as weather permits with the final layer of gravel.
This project is a Gravel Road Program which includes:
a) The road width will remain the same width (25 to 26 feet) some work will be done in the shoulders to help raise the road.
b) Culverts in place have been checked and will not be replaced.
c) Three (3) plus inches of gravel will be placed on the road bed from Lakeshore Drive to several hundred feet beyond Lund Road.
d) Ditching from the Grand Kal/Lakeshore Drive intersection will be ditched on both sides. East side from the first house to approximately that south property line; West side from intersection to first Cedar Ridge driveway.
e) Mailboxes should not have to be moved. If they do have to moved, the road commission will do the work and bear the expense (if any).
f) Improvements to the curve area area include improved water runoff.
g) Trees will be trimmed in curve area, plus where needed elsewhere.
h) Weather permitting, this gravel road project will be completed by October 1, 2019.
This project has been in the works for several years and will be completed at a cost to Fife Lake Township of approximately $83,000, and $24,000 from the Grand Traverse County Road Commission. Your township board has approved using a major portion of our fund balance to finance this project.
The next road project is anticipated to be Lakeshore Drive. Estimates are over 1.3 million, therefore creative financing will need to be utilized. A road committee is being established to begin planning for this major project. At this time, there is no established start date.
Contact the Township Supervisor for further information at 231-879-3963 or 231-631-1750.
MDOT: The Roundabout is open to all traffic. Please remember to yield to traffic in the roundabout circle, they have the right of way! This means traffic approaching from any of the four directions has to yield to roundabout traffic. Please be responsible drivers.
Construction still is taking place, so lower speed and care should be used until this is complete. The west temporary traffic lane will be removed.
The traffic light has been removed at M-186 and M-113. Consumers will be placing a light over that intersection.
Fife Lake Township is proposing an amendment to the master plan. Go to the Planning Commission Master Plan attachment. Per the MPEA, this document was released for public comment review period of 63 days on February 28, 2019 by the Township Board.
A special meeting was held on December 6, 2018. North Bay developer, Paul Bandrowski, gave a presentation on their proposed development of the Pugsley property. The Township Board approved the agreement between the State of Michigan Land Bank, Fife Lake Township, Grand Traverse County, and North Bay. Zoning and planning will take place and once site plans have been approved and permits issued, the SOM Land Bank will transfer Phase I to North Bay and they will begin their renovations. Phase One covers the fenced area of the prison and the water facilities. Grand Traverse County will continue to utilize the gun range for law enforcement agencies only.
NOTE: To view the Medical Marihuana Facilities Ordinance MMFO-2018-1, go to Township Board and scroll to bottom of page, then open the ordinance. Please note the effective date has been changed to March 1, 2019.
Fife Lake Township Newsletter fifelaketwp.com 231-879-3963 December 2018
From Supervisor Forwerck email@example.com 231-631-1750
We have had a busy year which includes the following: (please note the correction regarding our fire engine, my apologies for the incorrect information).
Transition from Grand Traverse Rural Fire to our Fife Lake Emergency Services. Our fire department is funded with millages from Springfield and Fife Lake townships. Union Township contracts with us for their fire protection. We did purchase a new engine to replace the old engine, as the old engine had been defective for many years. We were able to fund a $100,000 down payment towards the $300,000 purchase with dissolution funds from rural fire.
Boat Access open: we still have a few minor things to do before this site is complete. Because of the early winter, they may not be completed until the spring. We thank the Grand Traverse Band for their generous grant, and the MDNR for their contributed dock and all their labor to bring this together.
Accounting services for our township are now through H&R Block in Kingsley. This is due to the closing of FAS who discontinued their accounting services. Ambulance and Fire accounting is through Dave Milliron, who was the accountant with Grand Traverse Rural Fire.
Please note we have retained Todd Millar as our attorney for Pugsley Correctional Facility legal work. Bryan Graham has been retained as our general counsel.
We are in the process of forming a joint planning commission with Fife Lake Village. Our start date is projected to be January 1, 2018. Both units of government have hired Elise Craft to lead us through this process. She also will be working with the township on the Pugsley process, along with our new zoning administrator Debbie Rodriquez.
Camp Pugsley: The Michigan Land Bank has met with us several times to discuss potential development on this property. Zoning designation needs to be in place before development can move forward. A December 6, 2018, special meeting is scheduled with a presentation by the developer. All involved parties will be in attendance including the Michigan Land Bank and Grand Traverse County, our attorney and planner, plus the developer’s attorneys.
Medical Marijuana: *The township board adopted an Ordinance allowing two licenses each for the five licenses in our township, which would total 10 licenses if all were applied for. This is effective January 1, 2019. This law is heavily monitored by the State and requires new licenses every year in each category. Medical Marijuana is different from the caregiver marijuana law that became law in 2008. It also is separate from the recreational marijuana law passed 11-6-2018.
*Please note this ordinance was rescinded and replaced with Ordinance MMFO-2109-2 of 2019, adopted October 24, 2019.
MDOT Project - 2021 projection: A turning lane project will take place at the U.S.131 and Fife Lake Road intersection. This will define turning and passing lanes similar to the one at South Boardman. This is a much needed safety improvement.
Cemetery: Fall 2018, an imaging project to locate unmarked burials was completed this fall through the hard work of Sexton John Kelley and volunteer Lisa Plamondon. This was done in both cemeteries and over 400 unmarked graves were marked with stakes until we can mark them with small stones identifying name and dates. We are urging a) family members to purchase a stone at a nominal cost; b) urging citizens to adopt an unmarked grave; and c) ensure that our township can fund some of these stones who do not fall in category a or b; and d) making sure our veterans have grave markers. If you are interested in assisting with this project, please contact our cemetery sexton at 231-499-1578. Go to our website for further information – fifelaketwp.com.
Nate Alger is now the Grand Traverse County administrator. He was our undersheriff and lives in Kingsley. Rob Hentschel is our new county commissioner. Senator Schmidt and Representative Inman were reelected, and Debbie Stabenow and Jack Bergman were reelected to congress.
The millage increase for our general fund passed and will bring our millage back to one mill. The Headlee amendment reduces all our millages every year, and this millage had not been brought back to one mill for several years. Thank you.
We wish everyone Happy Holidays and safe driving!
Supervisor Forwerck 231-631-1750
Clerk Street 231-263-0056
Treasurer Sorrow 231-879-4656
Trustees Pearson & Zimmerman
Assessor Dawn Kuhns 231-409-1827
Zoning Debbie Rodriquez 231-879-3963
Planning Joe Jones/Elise Craft
EMS/Ambulance Rob Melacon 231-879-4009
Fire – Scott Tinker 231-879-4009
Deputy Eric Meiers 231-879-5302
Cemetery – Lisa Plamondon 231-499-1578
Supervisor Linda Forwerck: On behalf of the Fife Lake Township board, I would like to thank our citizens for supporting our General Operating Millage request that was on the ballot. This replaces the millage the township has lost through the years because of the Headlee rollback. The .1715 mills provides funds for our general operating expenses in the estimated amount of $9,299 during 2018, and brings us back to one mill for our general fund. Thank you again.
Our new Grand Travere Commissioner is Robert D. Hentschel who you may know from Roy's General Store in East Bay Township. We welcome him aboard.
Senator Wayne Schmidt and Representative Larry Inman were reelected. We congratulate them.
The Forest Area Schools millage passed. We look forward to security and other school improvements for our students, teachers and staff.
Imaging is key to locate our ancestor’s graves” Cemetery Committee Bucket List
Fall 2018: *The latest project is the cemetery imaging to locate unmarked burials. This has been on the Cemetery Committee’s “bucket list” for many years, but a goal the committee felt we could not afford. This past week this dream became a reality, and through the hard work of our Sexton John Kelley and Volunteer Lisa Plamondon, the imaging was done in both Fife Lake and Walton cemeteries where it was discovered we have over three hundred unmarked graves. Wow and now we know where the empty graves are.
The next goal of this project is to mark as many graves as possible. The process will include 1) posting unmarked grave names to fifelaketwp.com, 2) posting lot owners of unknown graves to website, 3) finding family members who can purchase markers for their relatives, 4) urging our citizens to adopt a grave marker, 5) ensure that Fife Lake Township can secure funding to place a small stone marker on the graves of those who do not have a relative, or adopted sponsor to do this, and 4) making sure all veterans have grave markers with the assistance of our local American Legion Post 219.
Please contact current Cemetery Sexton Lisa Plamondon at 231-499-1578, for more information about grave stone pricing, engraving work, and associated information on this important project. A sample engraved stone will be available.
If you have family stories associated with unmarked or marked burials, please contact Linda Forwerck 231-631-1750 to preserve this important historic information which will be shared with our Historical Society through our museum curator Craig Bridson 231-499-0535. This collected information will be put in our Genealogy Record room at the historic school house and utilized in our local history.
Our cemetery committee members are Cathy Sorrow (Chair), Betty Ingersoll, Marie Voice, Barb Magel, Jim Gifford, and Carol Raifail. Please thank them for their ongoing devotion to our cemetery preservation and improvements. We acknowledge the Fife Lake Township Board for setting aside money in the Cemetery budget to make continual improvements and maintain our cemeteries.
Cemetery Committee History:
In 1989, under guidance of then Supervisor Jack Rawlings, Fife Lake Township appointed a Cemetery Committee to develop a Cemetery Ordinance, and to plan for improvements at both Fife Lake and Walton cemeteries which fall under the responsibility of Fife Lake Township. Serving on this original committee were Gertrude Gonyer, Zelda Gill, Marie Voice, Al Cwalina and Wayne Ingersoll.
Once the ordinance language was in place, the committee decided it needed to cut and trim trees. Landscape Architect Anita Silverman was hired to visit Fife Lake Township Cemetery and make recommendations as to what trees should be cut. Her professional recommendation was the tree cutting should be kept minimal in order to preserve the historic personality of the cemetery, and her recommendation was followed. The township board approved money to move forward on this.
Due to snowmobilers running across Walton Cemetery, a fence was placed around the perimeter. This was also done at the Fife Lake Cemetery which included moving the historic fence from what used to be State Road at the back of the cemetery to the front (then Central Street now State Street) which again added to the historic look. During the Christmas holidays, wreaths are put on the front fence courtesy of the Village Downtown Development Authority. Decorative lights are put on the meandering fence by the marsh by township board members
Since that time, a permanent cemetery sexton (John Kelley) with the assistance of a part time helper (Nichole Precord), was hired to care for both cemeteries adding that ongoing touch needed to ensure continual beautification of the two cemeteries. John has straightened and cleaned grave monuments which is a ongoing project. Equipment has been purchased by the township to ensure proper care takes place. Future projects include expansion of both cemeteries and eventual irrigation systems. Also, a small park and trail near the marsh is being developed.
Fife Lake Community Notice:
Fire Department Update:
As of 12:00 a.m. on April 1, 2018, our fire services became Fife Lake Area Emergency Services Authority (FLAESA). We now have seventeen (22) volunteers which includes our fire chief Scott Tinker, deputy fire chief Rob Melancon, and captain Andrew Killingsworth. Our four EMS employees are cross trained, therefore they are able to respond to fire calls while on duty at our facility at 134 Morgan Street, Fife Lake.
Our FLAESA board consists of two Springfield Township Board members being Tom Gonyer and Jeremy Birgy plus Fife Lake Township Board members Linda Forwerck and Elizabeth Pearson. Union Township is contracting with us for fire services throughout their township.
To make this transition possible, we purchased equipment from Grand Traverse Rural Fire at a cost of $186,000. This is equipment that was in our Station 6 Firebarn and includes a tanker, brush truck, water supply truck, pontoon boat, snowmobile and kubota (which was owned solely by Fife Lake Township). Engine 6 (2010 model) was returned to Rural Fire. We bought a new 2018 Fire Engine at a cost of $300,000. We did keep the equipment from our old engine and it is now on our new engine. We are sharing this cost with Springfield Township. Our share of the GTRF cash balance distribution check Fife Lake Township received we over $110.000. Springfield Township receives about double this figure as they did not have to purchase equipment.
The transition process has been indepth and involved our attorney (Todd Millar), our auditor (Ryan Howell), and our accountant (Sandra Wilton). We are in the process of getting our mutual aid agreements in place with our neighboring fire departments.
We take our hats off (or should we say helmets) to our fire chief, deputy fire chief and captain plus all of our volunteers and neighbors who helped get our new decals on the equipment, get our gear in our barn, and whatever else needed to be done to put our new fire department together. There were many extra meetings held by Springfield and Fife Lake townships, FLAESA, and EMS to make sure we covered all our bases. We also welcome aboard our many new volunteer faces and some who previously served. Talk about a strong team, we have it!
2018 Freightliner Spartan Engine
Scott Tinker hs been hired as Fire Chief for Fife Lake Area Emergency Service Authority, effective February 1, 2018. Chief Tinker reports to: Fife Lake Area Emergency Service Authority. At this time volunteers are being recruited for our fire department. If you are interested in becoming a volunteer, call 231-879-4009.
Fife Lake and Springfield townships have formed an independent fire department effective April 1, 2018. This will be managed and funded entirely by the townships. Fife Lake and Springfield townships have been members of the Grand Traverse Rural Fire Department, servicing a large portion of Grand Traverse County in conjunction with other Townships. The Grand Traverse Rural Fire Department will be dissolving March 31, 2018.
The townships will fund and operate a single fire station through existing township fire tax millages. The fire chief will coordinate all start-up functions necessary to support the fire station to continue to provide uninterrupted fire and rescue services.
Do you own a home in Fife Lake Township or in Fife Lake Village? Are you a seasonal resident? If you answered yes to both questions and would like me to keep an eye on your place while you are basking in the sunshine for winter, then stop by the township office at 134 Morgan Street, Fife Lake. Fill our a property check request and I can keep an eye on your place while you are gone. Please keep in mind, I do not have a snowmobile or even snowshoes, so if you live on a seasonal road or you have a driveway that is extremely long, I will keep an eye on your place from a distance. Fill out the sheet in it's entirety and I will stop by every couple of weeks. Any questions about this service, feel free to give me a call at 879-5302.
Deputy Eric Meyers
Grand Travere County Sheriff's Office, 851 Woodmere Avenue, Travere City, MI 49686
Deputy Eric Meiers is our Deputy. Eric lives in Fife Lake Township and we welcome him aboard. You may see him out and about on his bicycle which Fife Lake Township purchased with our Police Funds. The township also purchased two speed signs to remind you to drive at the posted speed limits. This has been a priority of our Police Committee to make Fife Lake a safer community.
March 23, 2017
FIFE LAKE TOWNSHIP:
At the March 23, 2017 meeting, the Fife Lake Township Board unanimously made a decision to leave Grand Traverse Rural Fire at the end of 2017. This decision hinged on our ability to remain as a GTRF member and receive adequate fire safety; or if we would be able to do this on our own with better results.
This is a decision that our board took very seriously on behalf of our citizens. Our fire millage is “for the purpose of providing funds for fire protection.” Most of the fire safety funds collected each year have paid Fife Lake Township’s share of the Grand Traverse Rural Fire budget, which in 2017 is $55,046 , while our millage collects $58,000 a year.
This decision alloed us to start the legal process to leave GTRF. This began with a letter of intent to withdraw. We adopted a resolution which notified GTRF that we would officially leave GTRF on April 30, 2018.
Let it be known that it is our intention to continue working with our adjacent neighbors in a professional, cooperative manner for Fire Safety today and into the future. This will be done through mutual aid agreements signed by both parties.
Our township historically has had strong fire protection backup from Garfield and Boardman townships in Kalkaska County. We have been assured by their fire chiefs that this relationship will continue. At the same time, once we officially leave GTRF, we hope to work with the remaining units of GTRF, as they are also our neighbors.
Let it further be known that our Emergency Medical Services (ambulance) will continue to cooperate with our neighbors in a professional manner. We are fortunate to have a full time staff here in our EMS building which enables them to respond in a timely fashion when an emergency call comes in.
Fife Lake Township Supervisor, Linda Forwerck
EMS Director, Robert Melancon
Fife Lake Township and Fife Lake Village were awarded a Grand Traverse Band 2% grant in the amount of $22,681 for a joint sidewalk project. This project is now complete which provides a safe walkway to three major businesses on the north end of the community, and parallels the ideals of the designated "Trails Town." This grant, with local matches from the village and township, has allowed our community to have safer walkways.on Boyd Street from the Methodist Church to Van's Lane.
Fife Lake Emergency Management Services was awarded a 2% grant in the amount of $19,058.23 for a combination tool that will be used to extricate patients from vehicles involved in traffic collisions where access to the patient needs to be made by forcing open a door.
Miigwetch to the Grand Traverse Band for their generosity with these much needed safety improvements for our citizens.
Left to Right: Karen Rosa, Long Lake Township Supervisor (recipient of a fire safety grant); Tom Shomin, Tribal Councilor; Jane Rohl, Tribal Secretary; Thurlow "Sam" McClellan, Tribal Chair; Terry Street, Fife Lake Township Clerk; Linda Forwerck, Fife Lake Township Supervisor, Dave McGough, Fife Lake Village President; Stan Patrick, Fife Lake Chamber of Commerce President; Andrew Killingsworth, EMS Public Relations (Fife Lake/Springfield townships Ambulance Authority); Mark Wilson, Tribal Councilor; Kimberly Vargo, Tribal Vice Chair.
Tribal Council members not in picture: Tribal Treasurer, David Arroyo; Percy Bird, Jr., Tribal Councilor.
Picture by George Antoine, Grand Traverse Band.
Note: Unfortunately George passed away in May, 2018. I certainly will miss his enthusiasm and beautiful smile. - Linda Forwerck
MDOT is continuing to design the roundabout for the intersection of U.S>131 and M-186. The plan is available at the Fife Lake Township Hall. Sidewalk extensions, lighting, etc. are bring coordinated with the DDA plans. This project will being in early 2018.
Safety Improvement: MDOT contacted Fife Lake Township asking if we would pay to have overhead illumination lighting installed at the intersection of U.S. 131 and M-186 to provide more lighting at this intersection. After researching the cost with Great Lakes Energy, they came back with a project cost of $2,000 to, not only install overhead illumination lighting at this intersection, but also at U.S. 131 and Fife Lake Road. The FLT board approved this at their February 23, 2017 meeting. This project will take place in the next two months. Great Lakes Energy will be working with MDOT on the project. MDOT has waived their permit fees ________________________________________________________________________
Fife Lake Township and the Ambulance Authority have adopted the following weapons policy:
Fife Lake Township Weapons Policy
To prohibit non-law enforcement personnel from possessing
and storing weapons in Fife Lake Township owned buildings.
All Fife Lake Township elected officials, hired employees and volunteers.
Fife Lake Township personnel shall not possess or store weapons
in Fife Lake Township owned buildings at any time.
Items to be excluded: trauma shears, pocket knives.
(these items to be used by EMS or Fire Staff)
A weapon shall be defined as:
any firearm or any weapon required to be licensed under the CPL law,
or any weapon that is against the law. (adopted 2-23-2017)
The DEQ has issued a permit for the public access site
UPDATE: The project is 80 percent complete. We have some finishing touches such as the coir log installation, a picnic table, anchoring of the parking bumpers and signage. Our plans are to have a dedication ceremony when everything is complete. At this ceremoney we will recognize the generous donation from the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians, plus the hard work of the Department of Natural Resources.
The project has been scaled back by removing the basin area. This was a large component of the originally proposed design. The project does require some removal of material in order to put in a rock base to stabilize the cement planks which ensures that the project will be successful. This uses a standard Department of Natural Resources design, which has been engineered for any lake. This will be a typical single row boat ramp using 18 foot wide planks with a 13 percent slope. During the actual work, a protective silt screen will cover a 32 foot by 20 foot work area. A twenty foot dock will be furnished by the DNR. The water depth at the end of the launch will be four feet which will allow a boat to float off a trailer. By working with the DNR on this project, your State tax dollars are coming back to our community. This will save Fife Lake Township approximately $30,000.
Parking will be defined on the public access site. A natural vegetative coir log will be placed along the shoreline to prevent erosion, and also will be utilized as an example of how effective this works for shoreline protection. Our projected time frame for the actual boat launch component of this project is to be installed in May allowing boats to be launched by Memorial Day weekend of 2018. The coir log may need additional time to be installed, but this portion is projected to be done by July of 2018..
As stated at the public meetings, this launch site is intended to be used by boats 14 feet and under, and will not allow pontoons to be launched here. Thank you for your patience and participation with this project which to enhance our public access which will be used by our taxpayers.
View the public access permit here.
View the boat launch informational letter here.
Please drive carefully on all our roads, but especially on Van's Lane. We have many pedestrians who walk on these roads and some have encountered careless drivers who are going way too fast. Please respect our pedestrians!!
A great big thank you to Hayes Manufacturing:
Hayes Manufacturing volunteered three of their employees plus two of the owners to plant myrtle in the Fife Lake Cemetery. They did an amazing job working with Sexton Kelley. Luckily we were able to transplant the myrtle from the west bank of the cemetery, this saved a great deal of money The myrtle has been placed in the west end of the cemetery on a bank where we could not grow grass. This will stabilize and beautify the bank. Pictures are to follow soon.
Go to our cemetery page for pictures and more information on cemetery volunteers and projects.
* Grand Traverse County needs your help keeping our roadsides clean! Groups enroll for a two-year membership and perform three trash pickups per year along a two-mile section of county road. An annual safety meeting among volunteers is required. The Road Commission provides two recognition signs, trash bags, vests and trash pickup when your route is complete. Best of all…there is no charge for groups to participate in this program! Visit the Grand Traverse County Road Commission website for more information or to view routes open in your township. http://www.gtcrc.org/General/Adopt-A-Road.htm.
See picture of the Forest Area Federal Credit Union presenting their $800 grant to Fife Lake Township here.
Please take notice that Fife Lake will provide auxiliary aids or services to individual(s) with disabilities. Persons needing such services should contact the offices of the township clerk by writing or calling the clerk, not less than five (5) days prior to the hearing.
- Fife Lake Township Hall
124 Morgan Street
Fife Lake, Michigan 49633
Fife Lake Township shall update news and events as needed to help keep the public informed of the activities within the township during each month. Check here for the latest news and events. If you care to place information about a public activity in this space on our web site, feel free to contact Supervisor Forwerck at 231 631-1750 or Clerk Street at 231 879-3963 to have your activity date/dates announced.