South Lyon City Council Continues Road Improvement Planning
July 13, 2021
By Mike Kruzman / firstname.lastname@example.org
South Lyon City Council is continuing its conversation on how to best tackle their failing roads problem.
Based on the City receiving a road conditions assessment which showed generally low PASER Rating scores and accompanying analysis, City Council believes there is a $40-million need in order to get all the streets that need fixing fixed. They recently continued their ongoing discussion on how to best ask South Lyon residents for their support.
At a recent meeting, the City’s legal counsel, Patrick McGow, said the two best choices were to ask for a Headlee Amendment override or for voters to pass a road bond. Due to how the City Charter is set up, McGow said he did not believe they could ask for a road millage. Due to the Headlee Amendment, the City’s operating millage has been rolled back from its authorized 20 mills to 12.59. McGow said if they ask voters to override a portion, or all of that, they can’t include that it be set for roads in the ballot language. If the current Council wants it to be for roads, they would have to take actions that ensure the money is used that way by future boards which wouldn’t normally be held to it.
The other option is to pass a road bond. This would be similar to the sewer bond passed in the City in 2002. Coincidentally, that 3-mil bond comes off the books in 2024, giving Council a potential opportunity to implement the street bond then. It was discussed that that way, taxpayers wouldn’t see a change in their taxes. If they want it on the November ballot, they must submit by August 10th.
However, City Manager Paul Zelenak encouraged Council to take what time they need to make sure they get it right and that the public is properly informed.