You are viewing this article in the archives. For the latest breaking news and updates in Ann Arbor and the surrounding area, see
Posted on Tue, Aug 6, 2013 : 10:40 p.m.

Voters pass 4 core service millages in Ypsilanti Township

By Tom Perkins

Ypsilanti Township voters have overwhelmingly approved increases in three millages and the renewal of another that officials say will preserve the township’s core services.

Voters were asked to approve:

  • a .325 mill increase for fire service, which would raise the millage to 3.125 mills. It was approved 2,840 to 1,151, or 71.16 percent to 28.84 percent.
  • a .950 mill increase for police protection, which will raise the millage to 5.95 mills. It was approved 2,812 to 1,181, or 70.42 percent to 29.58 percent.
  • a .475 mill increase for garbage, refuse collection, recycling, composting, disposal of solid waste, energy conservation, alternative energy, water quality and environmental protection, which will increase the millage to 2.155 mills. It was approved 2,709 to 1,281 or 67.89 percent to 32.11 percent.
  • renewal of the roads millage, which will not increase and is set at 1.0059 mills. It was approved 2,366 to 1,605, or 59.58 percent to 40.42 percent.

The millage increases will provide a boost of approximately $370,671 for the fire department, $1,083,502 for police protection and $541,751 for solid waste and garbage collection.

“Millages are up every four years, and we are thankful residents understood that we needed a slight increase ... and we are extremely grateful,” said Supervisor Brenda Stumbo. “We are very humble and appreciative. It’s hard to ask people for an increase and we appreciate it, they didn’t have to approve them, but they did."

With all the millages approved, the owner of a home with a taxable value of $100,000 will pay an additional $175 annually.

The township placed the millages in front of voters because of the continued decline in property values, which meant declining revenue for the township.

Property values have dropped by 35 percent since 2007.

The 5 mills for police protection would have generated $8,823,180 in 2007, but would only generate $5,702,645 in 2013 — a difference of $3,120,535. The fire department millage would have generated $4,940,980 in 2007 but now only generates $3,193,481 — a difference of $1,747,499.

At current rates, projections have the fire fund running a deficit of around $962,000 in 2017; the police fund running a deficit of $508,000 by 2015 and increasing to $3.1 million by 2017; and the solid waste fund running a deficit of $1.5 million by 2017.

"We get to keep the police on the roads, we get keep fire departments open, we get to keep fixing roads, we get to keep picking up trash, we keep parks open, and thank you Ypsilanti Township residents. We appreciate your support," said Township Clerk Karen Lovejoy-Roe.

Township officials noted that employees have taken pay cuts, vacancies have gone unfilled, and township staff is paying more for their health insurance.

"I'm overwhelmed with appreciation for the vote," Stumbo said. "But we have a lot to do, we have to get to work, keep foot on gas pedal and keep moving forward. But it makes it easier when you have consistent dollar amounts for four years so you can plan."

Tom Perkins is a freelance reporter for Contact the news desk at or 734-623-2572.



Wed, Aug 7, 2013 : 4:17 p.m.

"With all the millages approved, the owner of a home with a taxable value of $100,000 will pay an additional $175 annually. " I assume taxable value as in half the market value for tax purposes?

This Post Doesn't Have A Name

Wed, Aug 7, 2013 : 11:15 p.m.

Half of the market value is the SEV, or State Equalized Value. The taxable value may or may not be that same number, depending on the effects of Proposal A, passed in 1994, to limit the increase in taxable values to 5% or the rate of inflation, whichever is less. It also depends on how far the market value fell in the Great Recession.


Wed, Aug 7, 2013 : 4:03 p.m.

I get a kick out of the voting in here. The votes rarely follow the comments but often follow the politics.


Wed, Aug 7, 2013 : 4:59 p.m.

It really is inexplicable sometimes.


Wed, Aug 7, 2013 : 1:51 p.m.

First, for stihl1: You must have been hiding under a rock for the last several months, not to know this millage was to be voted on yesterday. An article appeared in the Ann Arbor News, on,, on the township's web page (, in the newsletter included with your water bill, at your local neighborhood watch meetings AND a special mailing directly to your home from the township. I don't know what else the township could have done to inform it's resident's. GOOD JOB YTOWN!!! Second, to the voters who DIDN'T turn out yesterday: SHAME ON YOU!!! It's YOUR township and YOUR vote that makes things count. I, for one, did vote and am glad the millage passed. I am also confident out township leaders and those with the fire department, sheriff's department, road commission, etc. will work together to make YTown a continued great place to live! Thanks to all the resident's that did vote, whether it was for or against the millage, as that is what our great country was founded on! FREEDOM!!!


Wed, Aug 7, 2013 : 12:33 p.m.

Millage renewals should be restricted to November ballots. I had no idea any of that was even up for consideration tuesday.


Wed, Aug 7, 2013 : 4:12 p.m.

@stihl1 It seems that the votes are equal, 4 up, 4 down. 50% or the people agree with you. Get out to the township meetings and see if your voice can be heard. Please take your up votes with you, they need to be heard too. Not to take sides, but if the no votes feel strongly that millage ballots can't wait for the November election ballots, they need to go the meetings too.


Wed, Aug 7, 2013 : 3:53 p.m.

It's not like it wasn't posted everywhere. It was even posted on


Wed, Aug 7, 2013 : 1:15 p.m.

Where've you been, stihl, out of the country? These millage requests have been promoted by the Twp. officials for several months now in the press and other areas. We even got an informational flyer as a part of our water bill last month.

Jennifer McCurdy

Wed, Aug 7, 2013 : 12:16 p.m.

If you don't go out and vote - you can't complain about the results. I do hope the township makes smart use of the monies we have given them. Last November I waited in line for probably over an hour to vote... yesterday I was in and out in probably 10 minutes max. Just wonder if voter turn out had anything to do with renter vs homeowner. I know as a homeowner I wanted to make sure my voice was heard because it was coming directly out of my pockets.

Chaz H

Wed, Aug 7, 2013 : 8:20 p.m.

I was the only one there when I went to vote at 3pm. I own 2 homes in the Twp, and voted FOR all of the increases. A few hundred dollars more out of my pocket per year to make the community a better place to live is well worth it to me.


Wed, Aug 7, 2013 : 4:36 p.m.

I think you have a very valid point in renter vs owner. There are quite a few renters in Ypsilanti township. I assume they mostly either don't care or if they aren't reading or hearing rent increase then they won't get involved. Truthfully, until I was a homeowner it made little difference to me.

Rob MI

Wed, Aug 7, 2013 : 12:25 p.m.

I voted in favor all four proposals yesterday. As a township resident for 16 years, I've been pleased with the efforts of our elected officials and my votes yesterday were votes of confidence that they will continue to govern effectively.


Wed, Aug 7, 2013 : 11:49 a.m.

Just like Ann Arbor. Voter apathy prevails and low voter turnout is the norm. I propose we change to a system where registered voters are required to vote. If they do not, they lose their voter registration and become tax paying witnesses.


Wed, Aug 7, 2013 : 10:29 a.m.

This is a shame that these millage increases and renewal was passed by about 6 or 7 % of the registered voters in the township. I would have enjoyed seeing a much larger group of voters determine the outcome. I am sure that the millage increases will serve the community well, it is just a shame that more people are not involved with the community they live in.


Wed, Aug 7, 2013 : 11:46 a.m.

Just like Ann Arbor. Apathy prevails.


Wed, Aug 7, 2013 : 9:46 a.m.

10 percent voter turnout. Just awful. I sure do hope these rates go down when the property values go back up. Does anyone think that'll happen?


Wed, Aug 7, 2013 : 3:44 p.m.

If property values are up in 4 years, do you think the renewal language will include a DEcrease in the millage rate to reflect that?

Jennifer McCurdy

Wed, Aug 7, 2013 : 12:20 p.m.

I think thats up to the voters in 4 years when these are up for renewal. We don't have to renew them.


Wed, Aug 7, 2013 : 3:50 a.m.

"Ypsilanti Township voters have overwhelmingly approved increases in three millages and the renewal of another that officials say will preserve the township's core services." Tom, what percentage of registered voters came out to vote today? Was this a landslide due to the poor turnout?

Tom Perkins

Wed, Aug 7, 2013 : 4:19 a.m.

Mike, Right around 10 percent.


Wed, Aug 7, 2013 : 3:58 a.m.

Yep, in part. Too bad we got so many elections, or maybe too bad many folks just vote in November and some just every 4 years for the President and ever else is on the ballot. Still I'm happy it passed, city services are a necessary. Lets hope the money will be used wisely !

Mark Hergott

Wed, Aug 7, 2013 : 3:45 a.m.

At this rate, the disparity between the city and the township's millage rates will not be as dramatic in coming years. Of course, I don't want the township folks to pay lots of taxes. I do want the city and the township to work together to keep rates down. Consolidation of services, folks!

Mark Hergott

Wed, Aug 7, 2013 : 4:45 p.m.

It seems very odd that people are voting me down for expressing an interest in the city and township working together to keep costs down.


Wed, Aug 7, 2013 : 3:42 p.m.

Mark The disparity between the city and the township is one thing that the township will have to consider when reaching out for new and even old business. It could possibly get to the point that the taxes may put business back into the city. I think that we may be a ways off though, as the city is adding new taxes as well.