Category Archives: Water and Waste treatment systems

Oakland Township’s indecision on water storage facility may have significant consequences for Township

On October 25, 2022 the Oakland Township Board was locked in a three to three ‘deadlocked’ position regarding the location for the Michigan State mandated water storage facility for Oakland Township’s Southwest water district system. Three Board members wanted the facility located in The Crossings Subdivision at Kern Road, in spite of significant resident input to the contrary, while three members wanted the facility located on a potentially donated 5 Acre parcel of land across from Delta Kelly school on Adams and Gunn. Clerk Buxar did not attend the meeting. Neither location was approved. As a result, the Township may no longer receive the donated parcel.


Several years ago, the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy required that Oakland Township install a one million gallon water storage facility to protect the many residents who have their water supplied by several pumps linked together in the Southwest region of the Township. The Southwest water system is shown on the following map as well as the other water systems in the Township. The residents that are directly impacted are those living in the subdivisions in the SW system that are serviced by the water mains shown in light green.

The Township has spend several years studying how best to meet the mandated requirement from the State for the Southwest system and other systems in the Township. After years of study, the Board selected two possible sites for final consideration. As stated earlier, one is located in The Crossings Subdivision on Kern Road, the other is on the Northeast corner of Adams and Gunn across from Delta Kelly School. Here is an arial view of the two proposed locations.

The Kern Road proposal would locate the storage facility next to an existing water supply pump house servicing that subdivision, and is linked to others in the district. The parcel of land is 1.7 acres.

The Adams Road proposal would locate the facility on a 5.7 acre parcel that is directly across the street from the Delta Kelly School on Adams and Gunn. The parcel is part of the proposed ARTEMIS VILLA Planned Unit Development. The donation of that parcel is a critical part of the Township’s agreement with ARTIMUS to use the Planned Unit Development option for their development. It is the “Public Benefit Essential Services” element of the plan that allows the more liberal Planned Unit Development option to be used. The ARTIMUS VILLA development is a 25 acre development with 38 site condominiums. It is located further east on Gunn Road, from the proposed 5.7 acre parcel. The development WAS approved on the 25th contingent upon the Township ultimately approving a water storage facility in the Southwest Water system district.

It was announced, at the October 25th Board meeting, that October 26th was the deadline given by the ARTIMUS developer for approving a water storage location as part of their agreement to donate the 5.7 acre parcel. Why the Board waited this long to make a decision on the storage location was not disclosed. Since the Board had not approved either water storage location, the developer has the option to back out of the agreement. The ultimate fate of the ARTIMUS PUD, the potentially donated parcel, and the water storage location is all uncertain at this time.

Getting back to the storage location issue, the Township hired a consultant company to analyze the positive and negative aspects of the Kern Road and Adams Road proposals. Here is a summary of that analysis.

The Board members were to use this information in their decision making process. Three of the Board members voted for the Adams Road location. Three voted for the Kern Road location. The ‘deadlock’ resulted in neither one be approved, even though there were dozens of comment from residents at both the October 25th, meeting and last month’s Board meeting, supporting the Adams Road location.

Here is a video of the rationale from Trustee Mabry supporting the Adams Road location.

Here is a video of the rationale from Trustee’s Elder, Zale and Giannangeli supporting the Kern Road location.

The following photographs are intended to demonstrate the impact a 45 foot tall water storage facility on Kern Road would have on the residents who live the closest to the proposed location.

At the end of the meeting on the 25th, Trustee Elder commented that he previously received a Powerpoint presentation from Trustee Buxar (who was not present at the meeting) regarding the water storage issue. He indicated that it helped him formulate his opinion on the matter. It apparently had not been shared with all the Board members, or the public. The Board asked him to send a copy of the presentation to the entire Board. As a result, it is safe to say that had Clerk Buxar been present, the Kern Road location would have been approved.

After the Buxar Powerpoint presentation was mentioned, Trustees Zale and Giannangeli attempted to pressure one of the Trustees, who supported the Adams Road location, to reopen the matter for decision that evening. They appear to have known how Clerk Buxar would vote. They also appeared to have made this request in order to prevent the possibility of the ARTEMIS developer retracting their offer for the land donation. None of the other three Trustees agreed to reopen the matter. They still felt there might be some way to have the Adams Road location selected. Here is a video of that dialog.

Why is this important to the residents of Oakland Township?

Oakland Township residents elect our officials to make decisions that are in the best interest of the citizens. Citizen input is a key part of making sure their voices are heard, and influence the decisions officials make. The many comments made by residents supporting the Adams Road location clearly did not influence three (and likely 4) of the Board members. The rationale for selecting the Kern Road location seems counter to the will of our residents. Are there other factors that have not been shared with the residents that influenced their decision? (Note the Buxar presentation that had not been shared with the entire Board or public).


It appears that the water storage location decision will be a topic for next month’s Board meeting. What is not known is whether the ARTEMIS PUD development will proceed or not, given the fact the water storage deadline has passed. Can any of the 4 Board members supporting the Kern Road location be made to change their mind? Can the Board members provide more rationale for their support of the Kern Road location? Concerned citizens may still be able to influence the direction the Board ultimately takes on this issue. Please continue to provide your input to the Board through emails on this matter. Also, attend the next Board meeting that is currently scheduled for November 15th.

Will Township Board approve Iron removal treatment facilities to two water systems in Oakland Township?

If you live in one of two regions in Oakland Township that are serviced by a community water system, the Township Board will be making decisions that will impact your water bills in the future.  You may have responded to a Water System survey that had been sent to you in the past.  The survey results are in.  The Board will be making their final decisions based on the results of the survey and any further input they receive from impacted citizens.

At the October 24, 2017 Oakland Township Board meeting, a representative from the Oakland County Water Resource Commission (WRC) presented the results of a survey requested by the Board regarding issues pertaining to two water supply systems in Oakland Township.  The two issues the Board was hoping to get citizen input on were:

  • The location of the required water storage facility for each of the two systems, and
  • Whether the citizens, serviced by those systems, wanted to add, and pay for at approximately $400 per year, a centralized iron removal system.

The results of the survey indicate that the majority of the citizens who responded are not supportive of adding the centralized iron removal system, although a minority of respondees indicated they had severe iron issues. They also indicated they wanted the water storage facilities to be as hidden as possible, and as low in cost as possible.

The Township Board unanimously approved a motion to have the WRC undergo an engineering study to determine the possible locations for the water storage facilities. The locations are to be large enough to allow for the possible addition of iron removal facilities.

The Board did not take action on the iron removal treatment issue. There was some concern expressed by at least one Board member that, even though the response to the survey was high (32% & 38%) based on typical survey results , he wanted the survey results to be more visible to the impacted residents before making a decision.  No official action was taken by the Board on this issue.  It will certainly be discussed at future Board meetings.

In order to help communicate the results of the survey, I have attached the following images.  As previously stated, there are two regions impacted by these decisions.  A map and survey results are shown for each.  They are only the highest level findings from the survey:


The following map shows all the community well systems in Oakland Township.  This map, along with the ones shown above, may provide a better understanding of the areas that will be impacted by the Board’s decision.

If any citizens want to review the entire survey results , please click on the following link and review pages pages 30 through 116 .  If you want to provide input to the Township Board, either send them a letter with your thoughts on this issue, or watch for this topic on future Board agenda’s and attend the meeting to provide your input.

October 24, 2017 Board Meeting Packet

Richard Michalski

July 11, 2017 Township Board meeting – Board will discuss citizen survey regarding municipal water storage sites and iron removal treatment

On July 11, 2017 the Township Board will consider the content and format of a citizens survey regarding potential iron removal treatment of the delivered water and the location of storage sites for the municipal water systems in our Township.

All resident will be impacted by the location of the storage facilities, but only those who are serviced by the system will be impacted by the decision regarding iron removal.  The survey is intended to gather citizen input for the Board to consider before they make decisions on these matters.

A map of the various municipal water system districts are shown on the following map (click to enlarge):


The draft survey is attached.  Please review the attachments and attend the July 11, 2017 meeting to add your comments. The meeting starts at 7 PM and will be held at the Township Hall on Collins Road.

OAT Southeast District Survey 070717 wrc_1

Richard Michalski

WE’RE BACK! Attention – Important Board meeting on February 14

It has been several months since we published any articles on the Oakland Township Watchers Website.  The hiatus was due to a number of things:

  • The activities in the Township have been fairly limited since the new Board took office in November (we will provide a summary of some of the more notable items that have occurred over the past few months in a future post),
  • the holidays, and
  • personal reasons that have prevented the authors from spending time on the website.

With all of that said, the February 14 2017 7PM, Oakland Township Board meeting has one agenda item that could impact a large number of our Township residents.  That item deals with the proposed Water System Ownership, Operation and Maintenance agreement between the Water Resource Commission and Oakland Township. If you live in one of the districts shown on the following map, your water system may be impacted by decisions that the Board may make.  The Water Resource Commission will be at the meeting to give a presentation on their proposal. Your water rates may be impacted by any decision the Board will make.  The Board is not planning on making a decision at the February 14 meeting, but your questions and input could help them make an informed decision at a later meeting.


If you are interested, please attend the 7 PM meeting on February 14, 2017 at the Township Hall located on Collins Road.

Richard Michalski

PS:  We have appreciated the support we have received from many Oakland Township residents for this website over the past (almost) four years.