Category Archives: Uncategorized

Exhibit honors the legacy of Janine Saputo

Janine Saputo was a long time resident of Oakland Township.  She was active in our Township as a Planning Commission member and a member of Oakland Township’s Historical Society.  Janine recently passed away.

What follows is an article that was published in the September 11, 2017 Community Lifestyles newspaper.

“The Oakland Township Historical Society announces the “Repeat Performance of the Heritage Exhibit Series” to be viewed this fall at the Paint Creek Cider Mill. This exhibit is dedicated to the life and legacy of Janine Saputo, a long time resident and volunteer in Oakland Township.

Saputo had many passions, but close to her heart was historic preservation.  In her 18 years of service on the Oakland Township Planning Commission, she offered her reasoned and thoughtful study of township expansion, always with an eye on history.

Saputo also served on the Histori District Commission for 16 years, four of those as its Chairman.

Upon moving to Oakland Township in the 1980’s, Saputo and husband Chuck joint the OT Historical Society.  Saputo proceeded to volunteer for not only Board positions, but every event and activity that the Society sponsored.

Her volunteer efforts included co-chairing the three exhibits that will be highlighted at this display.  The “Repeat Performance” will be open weekly, and docents will be on hand on the weekends, noon to 4 p.m., now through October 29th.”

Personal comment:

I worked with Janine on the Planning Commission for years.  She was a valuable asset to our Township.  She will be missed by all those who knew her.  ALL Oakland Township residents have and will continue to benefit from the years of service and legacy she gave to our Township.

Richard Michalski


September Township Board meetings will define our Township for the foreseeable future

Oakland Township’s Planning Commission has been working on our Township’s Master Plan and Zoning Ordinance for several years.  These are two of the most important documents that control the future growth in our Township.   Recent public statements about the poor planning in the Houston area highlight the importance of good local management and control of future growth in a community.

The September 12, 2017 Oakland Township Board meeting has the approval of the Planning Commission’s Master Plan as a agenda item.  The document is the product of work of the Planning Commission.  Legally, the document does not require the approval of the Township Board.  However, our Board has approved a resolution that requires their approval before it is official.  Here is a link to the Master Plan document:

Full Draft for Adoption 8-7-17 (REDUCED)

Here is proposed Future Land Use Map (click on image to enlarge)

Here is the latest Zoning Map (click on link to view)

Zoning Map- July 2017

Similarly, the Planning Commission has also spent several years working on updating our Township Zoning Ordinance.  This document does statutorily require Board approval.  The “First Reading” of the document occurred at the August 22, Board meeting.  The “Second Reading” is scheduled for September 26, 2017.  Here is a link to the Draft Zoning Ordinance:

There have been MANY public hearing at the Planning Commission level, and some at the Board level regarding the content of these two documents.  As a result, the Board will probably approve the documents unless there is some ‘fatal flaw’ that residents find in them.  If you have not already participated in the earlier reviews, please look over the documents, and attend the appropriate meeting to voice your approval or concerns.

Richard Michalski

Summary of Recent Oakland Township Board meetings (July and August, 2017)

The following is a summary of the last four Oakland Township Board meetings held in July and August of 2017. There continue to be no controversial issues that have either been brought up, or created, by the Board.  However, in the near future, the Board will be taking action on two items that will affect our Township for several years.  Those two actions are the approval of the Master Plan and modifications to our Zoning Ordinance – Ordinance 16.  A separate post will be published on those two items.

July 11, 2017

  • Unanimously approved a contract for the purpose of Right-of-Way Phragmites Treatment Project with PLM Lake & Land Management in the amount of $6500.

July 25, 2017

  • Unanimously approved the Rochester Hills – Oakland – Rochester Older Person’s Commission Fiscal Year 2018 Budget Resolution.
  • Unanimously approved an Orchard Fencing contract with M.E.I. Construction for a cost of $14,000 from Historic District Commission appropriated funds.

August 8, 2017

  • Unanimously approved a Lease Agreement between the Veterans Tribute of Oakland Township and Charter Township of Oakland with an amendment that the “Tenant shall also procure and keep in effect insurance coverage in the amount of $500,000 per occurrence for property damage to the Tribute, or in a higher amount based on a verifiable increase in the Tribute property value, with such coverage being in effect the day after construction is complete”.
  • Unanimously approved Resolution 17-14 Regarding the Acquisition of Property through the Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund to accept the terms of the Agreement for Stony Creek Ravine Nature Park Expansion project.
  • Unanimously approved Resolution 17-15 Regarding the Development of Property through the Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund.
  • Unanimously approved the proposed Employee Benefits for the 2017- 18 Plan Year.
  • Unanimously approved the Planning Commission reappointment of Gary Kwapis for a three-year term expiring September 1, 2020.
  • Approved in a 6 to a vote, the Planning Commission reappointment of Anthony Scaccia for a three-year term expiring September 1, 2020 – Langlois was dissenting vote.
  • Unanimously approved the hiring of Young’s Environmental Cleanup, Inc. for the purpose of cleaning the storm drains at Fire Station #2, the Township Hall parking lot, and disposal of said goods at an amount not to exceed $5,000.

August 22, 2017

  • During the first reading of Oakland Township’s Zoning Ordinance 16, the Board approved in a 5 to 1 vote (Ferriolo was dissenting vote and Reilly was absent) the following modification to Section 16-323 HOME BASED BUSINESS: “that a business could be undertaken by the property owner and relative in the home or accessory structure without zoning administrative approval. Further, if an owner of residence wants to undertake a home based business with employees that should require zoning administrative approval.“
  • During the first reading of Oakland Township’s Zoning Ordinance 16, the Board approved in a 6 to 0 vote (Reilly was absent) the following modification to Section 16-402.02 SUMMARY TABLES, “Maximum Building Height to include 2.5 stories.”
  • Approved in a 6 to 0 vote (Reilly was absent) the Oakland Township Water System Operation and Maintenance Agreement.
  • Approved in a 6 to 0 vote (Reilly was absent) the reappointment of Brian Blust to the Zoning Board of Appeals for a three-year term expiring September 1, 2020.
  • Approved in a 6 to 0 vote (Reilly was absent) the Rez-Comm repair estimate not to exceed $9,500 for Fire Station #2 cement and catch basin repair

Richard Michalski

Summary of Recent Oakland Township Board meetings (May and June, 2017)

The following is a summary of the last four Oakland Township Board meetings. There have not been any controversial issues that have either been brought up, or created, by the Board over the past few months.


May 9th

  • Unanimously approved a request to obtain input from the MDEQ as to their position on the Mill Race restoration possibilities.
  • Unanimously approved payment of $9,000 to PEA for engineering services on the Millrace project.
  • Approved in a 5 to 2 vote (Reilly and Langlois the dissenting votes) the expenditures necessary to develop maintenance and repair project for the existing safety path surrounding Oakland Christian Church and construction of a new path surrounding the Blossom Ridge development. It also approved authorizing the Safety Paths and Trails Committee to oversee the project. The Safety Paths and Trails millage would fund the work.
  • Unanimously approved entering into a contract with the Neighborhood House to provide transportation services for low to moderate income citizens of Oakland Township, utilizing Community Development Block Grant funds appropriated to the Township.

May 23rd

  • Unanimously approved authorizing the Township Attorney and Parks and Recreation Attorney to sign the consent judgment in the case of Butcher, et al. v Oakland Township, Circuit Court Case No. 2016-152530-CH. (Comments from Parks and Recreation Attorney Steve Joppich and Trustee Ferriolo in following video)
  • Unanimously approved awarding a $6,400 contract to Cornerstone Remodeling Company LLC, for the painting of the Cranberry Lake Farm hen house and hatchling house.
  • Approved in a 6 to 1 vote (Langlois the dissenting vote) a motion to not entertain discussion on the 45 MPH postings on Mead and Dutton Roads with Rochester Hills.
  • Unanimously approved a request for a two-year extension of the Oak Arbor PRD.

June 13

  • Unanimously approved the Water supply and Amended Sewage Disposal rate increases for the residents serviced by the Water Resource Commission (click on image to enlarge).

  • Approved in a 6 to 1 vote (Giannangeli the dissenting vote) the expenditure of $17,085 for the replacement of the flat roof on the east side of the Paint Creek Cider Mill canopy roof.
  • Unanimously approved awarding a contract for $20,499 to the E. L. Electrical Company for replacing the Paint Creek Cider Mill electrical transfer switch.
  • Unanimously approved purchasing a truck and trailer for our Fire Department for $31,948 and $5,865 respectively.
  • Approved in a 6 to 1 vote (Mangiapani the dissenting vote) the deferred increases in the Parks and Recreation Employee’s compensation, pending the Parks and Recreation Commission’s approval.

June 27th

  • Unanimously approved purchasing a 40-foot flagpole for the Cranberry Lake facility owned by the Township for between $2,175 and $2,225.
  • Unanimously approved the purchase of a Building Department Vehicle for $52,415.
  • Unanimously approve the leasing of a Chevrolet Traverse for general Township use at a cost of $315 per month.
  • Unanimously approved the Buell Road Ventures request to direct their proposed special land use Ultimate Paved Road density, for 16 units on the South side of Buell Road between Rochester Road and Hadden Roads, to the Planning Commission for their consideration and review of the proposed plan.
  • Unanimously approved Verizon Metro’s request to add underground fiber optics capability within the approved right of way within a portion of our Township.
  • Approved in a 6 to 1 vote (Giannangeli the dissenting vote) the extension of the Oakland Township firefighter’s contract for one year, but with a 2% increase in compensation.
  • Approved in a 4 to 3 vote (Giannangeli, Mangiapani & Ferriolo the dissenting votes) the authorization to contribute $6,522.18 to the Rochester Area Youth Assistance program.

Things have appeared to ‘settle down’ with our newly elected Township Board.

Richard Michalski








Volunteer for this year’s Oakland Township ‘Clean Scene’ event – May 6, 2017

In the spring of each year, Oakland Township sponsors an event that benefits all of our residents.  That event is the ‘Clean Scene’ event.   During this one day event, volunteers from the Township, as well as other concerned citizens, offer their services in picking up the clutter that is along the roads in our Township.  It is a great way to help the community, get some exercise, and meet some of our fellow citizens.

This year’s event is scheduled for this Saturday, May 6 , 2017.  

The volunteers will meet at 9AM at the Township Hall on Collins Road .  

Anyone can volunteer.  Please wear hard soled shoes, work gloves and clothes appropriate for the weather conditions.

To volunteer, please contact:

Clerk Karen Reilly,


Treasurer Jeanne Langlois,


call (248)651-4440.

Here is a flier advertising the event (click on image to enlarge)!

Here is a link to the Township website or Facebook page with more information:

Township Official Website

Township Official Facebook Page

We hope to see you there!

Richard Michalski


Oakland Township Board takes pro-active steps to improve Township Roads

Oakland Township is blessed with a ‘rural’ atmosphere.  That appeal is made possible, in part, because many of our roads are not paved.  Unpaved gravel roads however deteriorate rapidly under various weather conditions and high traffic counts.  In a recent Township wide survey, our Township residents made is clear that we love the rural atmosphere, but we are not satisfied with the quality of our gravel roads.  The Township Board took steps at the April 25, 2017 board meeting to respond to the wishes of our residents.

The Township Board had previously established a Road subcommittee to develop an organized approach to deal with the road issues in our Township.  The members of the subcommittee include Trustee Robin Buxar, Trustee Frank Ferriolo, and Clerk Karen Reilly.

The responsibility for maintaining the roads in our Township is the Oakland County Road Commission’s.  As with statewide road improvements, funding is very limited.  Up until recently, the only source of funds for road improvements were ‘Tri-Party’ funds. The Tri-Party fund receives money from the State, the County, and local communities.  The cost is shared equally among all three.  The Road Commission ultimately makes the decision which roads will get improvements, but they rely very heavily on input from the community.  The subcommittee provided a structure methodical approach to identifying Oakland Township’s highest needs.

In 2016, the Township Board made a somewhat controversial decision to subsidize additional road improvement above and beyond what the Tri-Party fund would cover.  The 2016 Tri-Pary funding was $125,092 ($41,697 from Oakland Township).  The Board approved spending an additional $68,421 for road improvements. The total cost to the Township was $110,121.

The 2017 road improvement plan developed by the subcommittee, and approved by the Board on April 25th, has three parts:

Limestone addition to the following road segments:

  • Dutton Road (end of pavement to Livernois)
  • Gallagher (Silverbell to Orion Road)
  • Premier (Lake George to Kline)
  • Buell Rd (End of pavement to Hadden)

Gravel addition to the following road segments:

  • Hadden Road (Gunn to Inwood)
  • Harmon (Stoney Creek to Predmore)
  • Predmore (Harmon to Lake George)

Increase frequency of grading/chloride application (every 2 to 3 weeks from 4 to 6 weeks) :

  • Dutton (Brewster east to beginning of pavement)
  • Siverbell (End of pavement to Orion Rd)
  • Snell (End of pavement east to County Line)
  • Gunn (End of pavement east of Collins east to County Line)
  • Lake George (Stony Creek to Predmore)
  • Predmore (Lake George to Rochester)

Here is map of roads that will have increased frequency of maintenance

Click on map to enlarge view

The total cost to cover all three items is $230,664 ($84,508 from the State and County).  The total cost to the Township will be approximately $146,000.

Why is this important to the citizens of Oakland Township?  Road maintenance and improvement are the responsibility of the Road Commission.  Trustee Ferriolo determined that about 50% of Oakland County communities subsidize road improvements above the Tri-Party levels.  The decision by the Township Board to spend an additional $104,000 over our obligated Tri-Party amount was based on the residents’ response to the recent survey, where we indicated we were not satisfied with our Township roads. The Board has made an attempt at improving the situation.

We all need to be aware of the work that will be done on our roads this summer, and need to monitor the quality of the roads to determine if we notice a significant improvement from previous years.  Our feedback will influence the plan for 2018.

Richard Michalski



Summary of the April 25, 2017 Oakland Township Board meeting

The following is a summary of the major actions taken by the Township Board at the April 25, 2017 BOT meeting:

  • The Board approved a Safety Path and Trails strategy plan that will be an appendix to the, yet unapproved, Oakland Township Master Plan.
  • The Board approved the appointment of Libby Dwyer to the Safety Path and Trail committee for a three year period.  Libby has been the chairperson for the Safety Path and Trails committee for the past few years.
  • The Board approved the appointment of two Historic District Commission members: Gene Ferrera and Donald Westphal.
  • The Board approved a prepayment of Oakland Township’s share (approximately $525,000) for improvements to the Water Resource Commission’s sewage sludge treatment.  They could have chosen to fund the project through a bond proposal.  Since the cash is currently available in the Township’s accounts, it made more sense to them to make the payment now and eliminate the higher interest expense associated with the bonds.  The Bond interest would be a higher rate than what the Township is currently making on the money in our accounts.
  • The Board approved a proposal (which was developed by the Board’s road sub-committee) that identified the roads that would be serviced by the Road Commission’s Tri-Party fund.  The proposal also included several additional road improvement items that would be solely funded by the Township. A SEPARATE POST WILL BE MADE WITH THE DETAILS OF THIS PROPOSAL.
  • The Board approved retaining our Township’s current Liability insurance company.
  • The Board approved a contract for the Landscaping services of our Township properties.

Richard Michalski