Ypsilanti Citizen News Sidetrack

City Council approves all mayor's re-appointments
By Dan DuChene
Jun. 16, 2010   ·   3:42 a.m.

Jone Coleman, president of downtown business LookInTheAttic, shares his thoughts with City Council about the discussion and procedure taken to pass mayoral re-appointments, which he was being considered for the Downtown Development Authority.

After much procedure, Ypsilanti City Council approved six mayoral re-appointments to city boards and committees Tuesday, including the two postponed from earlier...read more

Council postpones two reappointments
By Mark Tower
Jun. 4, 2010   ·   4:57 p.m.

Two of Ypsilanti's volunteer board members were not reappointed on schedule Tuesday night, owing to a 4-2 vote by City Council to delay the appointments until...read more

Downtown properties to be rehabilitated
By Mark Tower
Jun. 4, 2010   ·   10:40 a.m.

The three properties located at 120, 122 and 124 West Michigan Avenue in downtown Ypsilanti will soon be rebuilt into commercial and office space and loft apartments, thanks to a planned $1.7 million investment by developers.

Three recently-vacated properties in downtown Ypsilanti, two of them condemned, will soon be renovated owing to recent purchase by a local development company and...read more

Ypsilanti Township authorizes litigation against Liberty Square
By Mark Tower
May. 28, 2010   ·   6:53 p.m.

Many of the homes in the Liberty Square complex on Grove Street in Ypsilanti Township are already boarded and ready for foreclosure sale. All 151 units, some of which are still occupied, will be condemned Tuesday, Ypsilanti Township has resolved.

Residents living in the Liberty Square complex of townhouses will see a sticker appear on their homes Tuesday, when the Ypsilanti Township Building Department places...read more

Ford plant granted tax exemption by township
By Mark Tower
May. 24, 2010   ·   5:44 p.m.

Ford Motor Company's Rawsonville Plan, located at the intersection of Textile and Bridge Roads in Ypsilanti Township, will soon be the new home for production of Ford's Electric Focus batteries, formerly produced in Mexico.

New machines and equipment will soon be wheeled into Ford's Rawsonville Plant in Ypsilanti Township as it begins manufacturing a line of batteries for the new global...read more

City waives snow removal fees

 Snow removal enforcement was encouraged by City Council after repeated complaints some property owners do not shovel. The old Motor Wheel facility, above, was on that list of repeat offenders. Photo by CITIZEN FILE

Snow removal enforcement was encouraged by City Council after repeated complaints some property owners do not shovel. The old Motor Wheel facility, above, was on that list of repeat offenders.
Dr. Kimberly A. Rice DDS

Investigation leads to changes in abatement enforcement

By Dan DuChene
Mar. 13, 2009    ·    3:02 p.m.


After an investigation into the snow abatements issued in January, the city of Ypsilanti will not be collecting any money from residents.

April McGrath, Ypsilanti administrative services manager, said she came to the conclusion Thursday that the city had not notified all the properties that had snow removed from their sidewalks by independent contractor A.M. Services. She said her findings were reported to City Council.

Ron Monroe, the city’s ordinance enforcer resigned from his post at the city Thursday as well. McGrath said Monroe turned in a letter, but did not give a reason for his leaving. She said Building Manager Frank Daniels and Rental Inspector Debbie Neville will be filling in on Monroe’s duties until the budget is reviewed to see if his position will be posted.

Monroe was the person in the city responsible for handing out the notices.

McGrath apologized for the snow removal enforcement Friday.

“It should have been a seamless process,” she said. “It was not implemented effectively.”

McGrath could not give a definite figure as to how many people had already paid their fine, and said she was not sure if they would be issued a refund. She said A.M. services will be paid for the service they had done if they had photographic evidence of the work.

She estimated the money due to A.M. could be more than $10,000, as 340 invoices were sent out to residents alleged to have violated December’s snow removal ordinance. McGrath said the average charge for the snow removal was $35.

Residents were charged $83, with the rest going toward the administrative costs incurred by the city for enforcement.

After several residents complained to City Council about the fees earlier this month, claiming they had not received an abatement notice or had shoveled their sidewalk adequately, McGrath investigated the city’s claim that 441 properties were given notice of abatements, which started the 18-hour clock for possible abatement if the snow or ice was not cleared away.

December’s addition of amendment to the snow removal ordinance was approved by City Council in a 6-1 vote. The recent the ordinance states that property owners have 48 hours to remove snow after the first snowfall. Failure to do so results in a warning handed out by the city.

If the homeowner fails to remove snow or ice prior to 12:00 p.m. the day after notice is given, provided there has been at least 18 hours since delivery of the notice, the city may cause such snow or ice to be removed at the homeowners expense.

Stay with the Citizen as this story develops.

Related stories:
Residents pile on City Council over snow fines
Community reeling from snow removal invoices



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