Six candidates aligned with incumbent trustees claim Park Commission seats
The Ypsilanti Township Park Commission will see seven new members when the new commission sits in November.
Several commissioners chose not to seek re-election and one incumbent was voted off the board.
Residents chose from 11 candidates for nine seats.
Six of the winners were aligned with the incumbent administration and trustees, while four were aligned with Y-Town Future.
Among those aligned with the incumbents are Richard Roe, Jasmine Mackey, Lonnie Scott, Evan Hayes, Keith Jason and Jimmy Maggard.
Monica Ross-Williams and Debbie Swanson are the two incumbents who will return. Along with Gail Boyd-Palmer, they are the the three candidates who were aligned with Y-Town Future.
Incumbent and Y-Town Future candidate Carrissa Collins-Watson was voted off the commission.
Several of the commissioners are young for public ofice, including Mackey and Hayes, both 18.
The park commission makes policy recommendations on park issues to the Ypsilanti Township Board of Trustees, which are either accepted or rejected. The township has a large park system which includes about 30 parks.
The commission makes a wide range of policy recommendations to the board of trustees and is charged with developing the parks master plan, which will be examined in the coming term. Another big issue is how the township continues to maintain the park system with dwindling revenues.
Some commissioners have argued that the commission should have more power under state law, and the township board of trustees should allow it to acquire, maintain and control park land. Several of the new commissioners have said they aren't aware of the issue.
Scott said he doesn't see foresee any issues working with Y-Town Future candidates and also said he thinks the number of new faces will benefit the township.
"There is value in experience and in freshness," he said. "I think voters saw that by re-electing the current board based on their hard work and experience over the past few years and overwhelmingly electing new faces to the park commission, including voting out an incumbent park commissioner."