Blossom Ridge (and Carillon Creek) development approved by Township Board

On February 2, 2016, the Oakland Township Board voted to approve a proposed Consent judgment settlement regarding the Blossom Ridge Senior development. The agreement also included a second parcel on the corner of Adams and Silverbell (by the Church). The Blossom Ridge issue has had many posts on this website over the years. It has been a contentious issue during this Board’s entire administration. In fact, every member of the Board played a role in having this issue proceed to a referendum vote in the summer of 2013.

The legal advice from our Township Attorney, and Judge Howard, clearly played a role in having the majority of the Board vote to approve this Consent Judgment. The vote was five to two, with Treasurer Langlois and Clerk Reilly being the dissenting vote.  Their objections centered on the fact that they did not think that the agreement should have included the second parcel (Carillon Creek parcel), even though our Township Attorney stated that a mutually agreeable solution to the Blossom Ridge parcel was not possible without consideration of the second parcel due to demands made by the Board on the Blossom Ridge parcel.

Most of the Board members shared the rationale for their decisions in great depth (exception being Clerk Reilly), and can be seen by visiting the Township website link included below.

Trustee Buxar summarized her decision by using a quote from Dr. Martin Luther King:

“Cowardice asks the question – Is it safe?

Expediency ask the question – Is is political?

Vanity asks the question – Is it popular?

Conscience asks the question – Is it right?

And there comes a time when one must take a position that is not, safe, political, or popular, but must make it simply because it is right!”

Here is a link to the Township’s website:

http://vp.telvue.com/player?id=T02627

Once you go to the website:

On Playlist tab, click on Board of Trustees 2016
On Video tab, click on February 2, 2016 BOT meeting
On Chapter tab, click on Chapter 3

The following link to a press release provides additional information on the agreement

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/settlement-agreement-provides-expanded-housing-152100205.html?soc_src=mediacontentstory&soc_trk=ma

So what does that Township get out of this agreement?

  • A Senior Assisted Living development that meets our ordinances and community needs.
  • A Senior Health and Wellness Center that meets our ordinances and community needs.
  • Eliminates the burden of Township having to prove it has provided ‘reasonable accommodations’ to a protected class of citizens.
  • Eliminates the potential $17M in delayed damage.
  • Eliminates the loss of being covered by our Insurance Company.
  • Decreases the potential density on the Research Laboratory zoned parcel.
  • Eliminates the potential for oil and gas drilling and cell towers on the parcels.
  • Accessible parkland available to the public in the portion of Township with the highest residential density.
  • Protects the Township against future similar lawsuits if the Carillon Creek parcel gets rezoned to the zoning districts as proposed by our attorney.
  • Township continues to have Engineering Control over the proposed developments.
  • Plan includes a restaurant in our community that our recent survey indicates is a desire of our residents.
  • Developer contributes $400,000 for a water storage facility to help improve seasonal water pressure issues (location will be determined by County water resource commission.)
  • Developer contributes $200,000 for an Advanced Life Support vehicle.
  • Developer contributes up to $125,000 in matching funds for a Veteran’s Memorial facility.

Finally, the biggest win for our Township is that we get this divisive issue behind us and heal the rift in our Township.

Why is this important to the citizens of Oakland Township?  The passage of this consent Judgment puts this contentious issue behind us.  The five Board members who voted to approve the agreement made their decision concluding that it was in the best interest of the Township.  Their decision was made in spite of their earlier concerns over the initial proposed development.  They need to be commended for taking that action.

Citizens should consider whether the decisions made by two of our top Township officials, (Treasurer Langlois and Clerk Reilly), really were made in the best interest of the Township.

Richard Michalski

 

3 thoughts on “Blossom Ridge (and Carillon Creek) development approved by Township Board

  1. Bob Yager

    Richard-

    Is questioning Treasurer Langlois and Clerk Reilly’s loyalty to the interests of the township intended to be part of the healing process?

    Bob Yager

    Reply
  2. richardjmichalski Post author

    Hi Bob,
    As several Board members have stated in the past, “The Board speaks through our motions”.

    With the elections coming up this summer, It is appropriate for the citizens to understand the position Board members have taken on critical motions that affect our Township. The rationale they use in making their decisions gives insight into their value system and judgment.

    As I stated above, I am suggesting that citizens consider the rationale Treasurer Langlois and Clerk Reilly used in this important decision when they vote this summer. Their value system and judgment could play a role in how some citizens vote. Both of them are officers of our Township and carry additional responsibilities representing us.

    Richard Michalski

    Reply
  3. Marc

    It’s interesting to see how the words of a few, early on, made a lawsuit and subsequent win almost ‘a given’ 4 years later. In a FIOA’ed document I obtained from an e-mail dated November 22, 2012, now disgraced former Trustee Maureen Thalmann, bragged the following to Supervisor Terry Gonser and resident Marty McQuade.

    “As I started to tell you Wednesday. I am pleased about the turn of events with Blossom Ridge as I have found a loop hole in how the last BOT had handled the rezoning and researched it through Brooks Patterson’s office. Marty asked me not to tell anyone about my find as not to give the last BOT and the developer a chance to act.

    It will be interesting to see how Mocceri responds”

    Well guys, how did that turn out for you?

    How much time, energy, money and harm has been cause by a small group of people that sought to violate the Fair Housing Act, Elliot-Larsen, Disabled Vets, and Discrimination against the Elderly? All of which I am convinced they would have been found guilty of!

    The 5 members of the Board that voted for the Consent Agreement were courageous in voting to end this disgrace! Voting otherwise would have turned our zoning ordinances on there side and resulted in a $17 million win for the developer that would have bankrupted the Township. Stand outs in the discussion include, Frank Ferriolo, John Giannangeli, and Robin Buxsar. Even Buxar realized that her former attorney, Mr. Gregory Need, still used by McQuade and the TOXIC BUNCH, was wrong. Buxar now represents the best interests for the Township as a whole, not just the noisy minority of militant neighbors residing in the Southwest portion of the Township.”

    The other two Trustees, who are both Township Officer’s, who voted against it for political gain, need to take Dr. Carel’s advice and resign!

    As Mr. Michalski stated, we need to get beyond this, heal, and get back to the business of intelligent planning and decision making!

    Marc H. Edwards

    Trustee and Planning Commissioner for 22 years

    Reply

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