2017-12-31 / Insight

Lapeer voters reject road millage, elect new city commissioner

810-452-2640 • jhogan@mihomepaper.com

Dan Osentoski Dan Osentoski LAPEER — If any major residential street reconstruction is to occur in Lapeer it will likely have to financed in part by the citizens and property owners that front the street slated for work. But the prospects of much significant work is slim following the Nov. 7 defeat of a two-mill road millage proposal sought for six years to allocate money toward local street projects.

Lapeer voters narrowly, again, defeated the road millage bid 383 to 359 — a difference of 24 votes. In November 2015 a similar proposal was defeated by a 17-vote margin, 527 to 510.

The City of Lapeer has long held a funding option called a special assessment where homeowners, businesses and property owners are assessed a portion of the overall cost of a reconstruction project. Last summer two local street projects were completed in the city, both using special assessments to finance a portion of the job. Court Street was rebuilt from East Genesee to the Farmers Creek bridge, just south of downtown. Calhoun Street from West Nepessing to East Genesee Street was also rebuilt.

Next summer the City will embark on a reconstruction project of Baldwin Road from M-24 to its southern city limits in the area of the Taco Bell access drive. That money — approximately $794,000 — is budgeted in the city’s “major” street fund. The city project will adjoin a Lapeer County Road Commission project that will see Baldwin Road rebuilt to Turrill Road. The Baldwin Road project is the only major street project slated for 2018, though the City will continue crack and seal and slurry-seal projects to enhance and prolong the life of existing roadway.

Residents elect new commissioner

The Nov. 7 election in the city of Lapeer also saw the election of Dan Osentoski to the city commission. Incumbent City Commissioner Elaine Gates lost her re-election bid as voters instead elected Osentoski. He earned 310 votes to that of Andrew Kluck, 254. Gates received 149 votes. Running unopposed was Lapeer Mayor Bill Sprague who earned 591 votes.

Osentoski, 52, owns Osentoski Insurance Agency in downtown Lapeer. He serves on the Board of the Downtown Development Authority (DDA), DDA Executive Board, Lapeer Main Street Organization Committee and Chair the Lapeer Main Street Economic Restructuring Committee.

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