Chesterfield Township is stronger than it was four years ago thanks to a tightened budget, employee wage freezes and understanding from township residents, Supervisor Mike Lovelock said Friday morning.
Lovelock outlined the township’s various accomplishments he has seen since taking office in 2008 during his fourth State of the Township Address at on Sugarbush Road.
“While a lot of communities are going in their general fund account, Chesterfield is not,” he said. “In the past three and a half years we have put back in that account approximately $2 million.”
Parks and Rec, Senior Center
The township’s Roots book, which contains information on Parks and Recreation programs for all ages, will be released soon, Lovelock said.
The Chesterfield Township Senior Center is one of the busiest centers in the area, he said, noting that it may need to be expanded in the future. Seniors from throughout the county use the center.
Police and Fire
Lovelock applauded the efforts of the police department, under direction of Chief Bruce Smith, and the fire department, led by Chief Doug Charbonneau.
“Your hometown fire department could not be better,” he said. “The department is strong, committed and dedicated.
“With a strong police and fire department, people will want to live here and raise a family.”
DPW and Building Department
Department of Public Works Superintendent Joe Gayeski, who is set to retire in June, has “put the best system in place,” Lovelock said, which includes bringing PRV stations above ground.
“Four years ago, the building department was in dire straits,” Lovelock added. “Today I can say the building department has come a long way and I think in the next two years the building department will be able to handle their own department again and not go into general fund and that’s great news. I know we’ve laid off people in the building department, but this year we have not.”
Recent and current developments in progress within the township include , Salvation Army, Five Below, Dollar Tree, Michigan Schools and Government Credit Union and the Kroger expansion. Lovelock noted that an Olive Garden is still a possibility for the township.
Treasury and Clerks Office
Lovelock commended Treasurer Linda Hartman and Deputy Treasurer Ellen Clark for their commitment to service and technology improvements, which allows the township to run more efficiently.
Clerk Jan Uglis and Deputy Clerk Eric Wurmlinger helped save the township money by consolidating school election precincts and the number of people who run elections. They also work to make the township’s website more user-friendly.
Lovelock noted projects he would like to finish in the future, including adding a splash park to , which he hopes to do at no cost to residents.
“Things are turning in the right direction," he said. "Home prices are stabilizing in Chesterfield, residents out of work are finding jobs, and more and more people are asking how we can help our community get stronger.
“Even though we’re facing challenging times, we have many accomplishments for which our community can be proud of.”