Good Thing We Have A City Council That Has Our Backs. Hate To See What Would Happen If They Didn’t.

Taking a look at the adopted budget for 2015-2016 and the actual for 2014-2015 budget interesting. The Deputy Comptroller got a raise 45,000.00 to 50,000.00 (5,000.00) the Director of the Ordinance Department got a nice little raise for himself 44,932.00 to 54,000.00 (9,068.00.) I do not know these people, nor do I say they should or shouldn’t get a raise. I would just like to ask this great administration and this fantastic council ah what are you doing? Is this how you are spending the Headlee Override money that we gave you?

Not only did the deputy comptroller get a raise at one time this position was written out of the budget, brought back within a year of writing it out and now getting a raise. Is this an important position in the City? Yes. Is it necessary to give a raise to this person before we go back to a five day work week? That isn’t for me to decide I don’t sit on the Council. The residents voted to place these seven on City Council to watch over the spending of our tax dollars.

The ordinance department a new department for the City. At one time this department was under another department and only part-timers worked in it. There was and is still a great need for this department and the making of this department was a welcome addition. Former Councilwoman Badalow wanted to do something similar if elected. Her idea was different from this.  I’m sure they are doing a great job I for one am happy to hear about the advancement of technology being used in this department. I would ask this question. How does a department head only two years into the job get such a large raise? While the City is still closed one day a week and we are still giving the City three million in Headlee Override money.

How about that overtime? Well, the Building Maintenance department overtime numbers for 2014-2015 $82,164.00. The DPW overtime numbers for 2014-2015 $131,144.00. How’s that four day work week working out for us? Have one of you sitting on that council even ask for documentation from the administration showing how much money the City saved over these past years of having only a four day work week? I guess a better question would be did the administration even keep track of those numbers?  Did one of you look and compare overtime numbers for a five day work week and a four day work week. Is there even a way in the City to break down those numbers?  Have you all forgotten that the Mayor said over and over again that there is NO OVERTIME! That was part of the deal you Mr. Mayor made with us residents and the Council I see as always you are holding up your end of the agreement. I thank you so much for again showing all of us what a great man you truly are.

I know what some are saying, Kathy why didn’t you bring these things up during budget talks? PLEAZZZZZZZ. As if anything we have to say would make one bit of difference. It’s done now and so be it can’t wait to see what’s going to happen when the union contracts come up next year.

 

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27 thoughts on “Good Thing We Have A City Council That Has Our Backs. Hate To See What Would Happen If They Didn’t.”

  1. drheights48127, The police did come and speak to that family. My husband said he saw the officer talk to the father for a very long time. Unsure if they were ticketed, but there weren’t any more fireworks! Thanks DHPD!

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  2. I’m so sorry to hear that I think that would drive me crazy. I hope the police came and took care of it. If they did what did they do to the people shooting off the fireworks?

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  3. dheights48127, you are so lucky to have respectful neighbors. My neighborhood still sounds like a war zone! I just cannot believe how so many people feel that laws just do not apply to them. My husband just went out and explained to the family on the block about the fireworks law and what they were doing was illegal and to please stop, we have children that need to sleep. This father–right in front of his kids–told my husband to f**k off and mind his own business. Glad we took photos of him shooting off the fireworks, because after trying to be polite and explaining the situation, they continued to shoot off fireworks. Now we are waiting for the police to come and ticket them.

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  4. This year around my house was much better than last year some went off a few days before. The day of all was over by 12am and I’ve had nothing since the 4th of July.

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  5. Anywhere the police and fire choose to designate as safe, secured and available to do fireworks as long as the state agree with the process.

    That is a possible temporary solution until the state law regarding fireworks change.

    Good look on changing the fireworks laws.

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  6. Firework, I don’t have a solution other than repealing the fireworks law. I thought you had a solution, that’s why I asked you where these designated fireworks area are or should be. Fireworks are only legal the day before, the day of and the day after a holiday and the holidays are designated by the state. My neighbors and I do not hesitate to call the cops when our neighbors are shooting them off illegally. We also take pictures in case there’s any question as to who it was.

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  7. Its an issue we are facing, what is your solution proposal from now until the state laws changes? Our local government should do a survey and propose a solution in compliance with state laws.

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  8. Firework, it’s not a dream to get this fireworks law repealed. Several Mayors (not ours of course) are petitioning to have this nonsense stopped. Where are these areas you feel would be good for shooting off explosives? Who do you think will clean up these areas after a cop babysits people and watching fireworks being shot off? Do you think tax payers should pay for this? We can’t get our streets swept on a regular basis! The people in my neighborhood don’t even clean up their own property after shooting off their fireworks.

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  9. Renee Partridge says: July 9, 2015 at 9:05 pm,

    I don’t smoke, and as I said fireworks should not be allowed in urban residential neighborhoods. However, currently its legal by state laws and until that change cities have to deal with it. Designating fireworks stations away from residential areas if its allowed by state laws may be a temporarily solution and relief to lot of residents and animals from the horrible noise and smell.

    The areas should be cleaned after fireworks done. “Temporarily solution”, better than complaining without practical solution.

    Totally banning fireworks is a perfect dream. However its a perfect solution. Please keep working on convincing the voters to totally ban fireworks.

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  10. Firework, what are you smoking? Shoot off fireworks in a park or school yard with a cop standing around? Do you want your kids running around after all the fireworks are done through all the gunpowder residue that’s left behind? All the paper crap that’s left on the ground? Fireworks are dangerous and unregulated. Do you think those Chinese workers that make them care what happens when you use them? Fireworks damage property, start fires, burn people, pollute the air, cause undue stress to people with PTSD and pets, and leave litter behind. The only reason these horrible things are legal in MI is because the governor wanted to bring in tax dollars. I really doubt all those people selling fireworks out of tents are truthful and pay the tax that the state is due.

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  11. Can anybody tell me who cuts the grass Detroit water tower on ford road. Why is this grass not cut.

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  12. After reading the comments posted, I -wish to extend an invitation to each person. Please feel free to call me, directly, on my cell # (348) 9848, or stop by the Constituent Office Hours, which are offered the first and third weeks of each month (see City website). As an elected official, I do not believe I have ever been disrespectful, arrogant, or have down played any resident concern, questions, and or comments. I have worked tirelessly to offer engagement opportunities, bring forth community services (Plan In a Can, Light Up the Night, safety programs, Senior Care services, addressing disabilities services/ ADA) and work to improve our community, our residents’ quality of life. In the last four years, some accomplishments include; bringing back Animal Control, advocate and passed by the City Council Vicious Dog Ordinance and Tethering Ban (public safety issues), Resolution to Ban Hydraulic Fracturing (environmental and safety in our community), increased communications including E-Letter Communications, utilization of social media, Ping4Alert, and streaming of City Council meetings. In addition, I lobby in Lansing on issues which impact our City and our residents. This includes municipal finance issues, PA 256 (fireworks) and pending legislation which would adversely effect our City. By serving on the Southeast Michigan Council of Governments Access to Core Services and the Regional Transportation Council, we are working to provide connectivity to employment, education, healthcare and recreation for ALL members of our community. Currently, I have presented a Resolution Against MPSC Rate Case U-17767, on agenda July 14th. If the Rate Case U-17767 is approved , will cost our City $100,000 plus per year in savings. In closing, each City Council member is elected independently and must stand for his/her work, position, commitment and service to our community. I WORK for our residents. I average 40-50 hours per week, which averages out to $3.75 per hour. I love serving our community. I am blessed and it is an honor. Please call me directly, so I may hear your concerns.

    Serving Our Community,

    Lisa Hicks-Clayton
    Dearborn Heights City Councilwoman
    .

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  13. Renee Partridge says: July 3, 2015 at 6:06 pm,

    The state laws supersede municipal codes. Therefore the fireworks are here to stay until the state laws change, and until that happen education and training about fireworks is the best safety practice.

    I agree with you that the fireworks are not belong to an urban environment were houses and buildings are stacked and plotted next to each others without enough space to do fireworks.

    If permitted by state laws; municipalities should designate locations such as (Park, recreation area, EXT) for residents to do fireworks under public safety officers supervision.

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  14. Renee- I wonder how many people in this city who hate fireworks and their effects on pets and vets would consider banning firearms? 32,000 people die of firearms each year in this country and yet we are talking about banning fireworks? I don’t get it. It is easier to carry a hand cannon on the street and go unmolested than a set of brass knuckles.

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  15. Just think how powerful Dearborn Heights City Council is, they have re-defined 8 x 4 to equal 36 (thirty six) WOW!

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  16. Firework, are you kidding? Municipalities should educate people on how to use fireworks?! The only reason a city has to allow fireworks is that it is a state law. I don’t think explosives belong in residential neighborhoods. They are dangerous–do you think sugar & spice makes them explode?

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  17. The state regulate the “firework”. Municipalities are in cooperated under the state laws and shall follow them. Municipalities should educate their residents about the safety of “firework” not legislate its use. Public safety officers are the best to advise and educate the residents about and how to use “firework”. I encourage them to provide at least one “firework” seminar/workshop per year. That will be the best method to enhance safety and minimize injuries. Training residents who want to exercise their rights to do “firework” how to do “firework” is a good public safety practice.

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  18. As stated earlier, it is not the law that someone must live in the city for which they work. That type of requirement couldn’t be enforced, nor should it be. All that should be required is that employees meet the qualifications and perform well in their positions.

    “Doctor is in” said: “Most of the employees don’t live in the city, do they? Ahh, that’s why they can get a higher income.” What does that mean? Who says something like that? If someone lives in Allen Park, or Dearborn, or Westland, he or she should get more money working in City Hall than someone who lives in Dearborn Heights? Are you implying that an employee who lives in Dearborn Heights doesn’t deserve as much as someone from a different city? Do you think an employee who is also a resident of Dearborn Heights is less intelligent or less worthy or less competent than another city employee who lives in a different city? Or, are you saying that, as a whole, Dearborn Heights employees shouldn’t earn as much as municipal employees in other cities? Should doctors who work in Dearborn Heights make less than doctors in other cities? Maybe the cost of food and gas should be less in Dearborn Heights because you think the residents can’t afford as much as residents of other cities? To carry your absurd reasoning to the outer limits, maybe social security recipients who live in Dearborn Heights should get less than residents of other cities. What about unemployment benefits? Or disability payments? Should we pay a lower rate of income tax?

    Maybe beer sold here should be cheaper, too. One can only hope.

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  19. Employees do not have to live in the city they work for. The state law changed a few years ago. If I work at Ford in Livonia, I don’t have to drive a Ford or live in Livonia. My wages are paid by those who buy a Ford. If I work at K-Mart in Taylor, I don’t have to shop there or live in Taylor. My wages are paid by those who shop there. No matter what goods or services I use or buy, I am paying someone’s wages. Just because I choose not to drive a Ford or shop at K-Mart does not mean that I do not do my job well and to the best of my ability. Same with city employees, what does it matter whether they live here or not?

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  20. For “the doctor is in” : Your logic is astounding! If employees are to make no more than the residents of the city (and, by that, I believe your implication is that they should earn less than they do now), should Detroit’s Mayor Duggan earn only $25,000 or so annually? I’m sure the average Detroit resident does not make in excess of $100,000; yet, many members of the Detroit administration do. What do the residents who live in the $500,000 to $1,000,000 homes in Dearborn Heights earn? Should their salary be the benchmark for city employees?

    I’m also sure the average Detroit resident would not be able to handle the complexities of municipal government. And the same goes for the average Dearborn Heights resident. Many of the people who post here do not have a clear understanding of everything that each city department must do. You only see what touches you directly. Frankly, the functions being performed in many areas are far more complex than you may realize. They are also more varied and time-consuming than you may be aware of. This is not to say that there is no room for improvement and elimination of waste. There is. This also does not mean that every person is performing at the level of proficiency one would expect. However, you paint city employees with a broad brush of inaccuracies in your statements. Why do you assume that “most” city employees do not live in the city? Have you done any actual fact-finding? I don’t believe you have. I also don’t believe you understand the educational and technical proficiencies required by many city positions. There is far more required than the casual observer would be able to ascertain. When you add in the rude and arrogant and harassing residents (thankfully, most residents do not fall into this category) who try to browbeat city employees into performing functions contrary to city ordinances or state law, the stress level employees continuously face can be overwhelming. Your insistence that employee salaries be reduced (“bring the administration down to the level of the residents”) without any cogent argument for doing so is irresponsible.

    As for the Ordinance Department: When the department was set up it was involved in enforcing city ordinances, which in itself is a huge task and has grown considerably since the function was spun off from the Building Department. Since that time the responsibility of animal control has been added which involved significant training time and many additional duties. There is no reason for people not to be paid for additional functions.

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  21. I just finished watching last weeks council meeting. I’m appalled at the disrespect shown to the residents!. One of the residents asked for answers and all he got was you’re out of time! I’m guessing I know who put in place the “3 minute rule”! When residents have grave concerns, they should not be limited to the “3 minute rule”! I never heard there was a 3 minute rule if you have an announcement, just when it relates to resident’s concerns! I know they have granted permission to residents to talk longer than 3 minutes. Don’t know if they have denied any requests for more time. Maybe all residents who need to speak before council should automatically ask for extra time.

    Last year Chief Gavin said it was hard to enforce the fireworks ordinance. This year he is saying it takes patrol cars away from more important things (delivering council packets?)

    The council (chair) need to be more respectful to the residents of this city. The resident from Hanover left without receiving any answers, let alone an acknowledgement of his questions and concerns.

    It’s just so sad how the residents are treated by the council (chair)! SMH!

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  22. This may be slightly off topic, but I just watched the council meeting and I am LIVID over the remarks the Police Chief made regarding fireworks. Chief Garvin leads me to believe that he doesn’t find people shooting off fireworks to be anything more than a nuisance to his department. Yes, I guess having to go to someone’s house, write a ticket, take the fireworks someplace safe could be time consuming, but isn’t public safety what that department is supposed to do? I sure see a lot of cops parked talking on their cell phones, driving and talking on their cell phones and driving fast through neighborhoods. A cop can’t see or hear these things exploding in the sky and start driving towards it? At least attempt to stop the problem? What is it going to take to get him to realize that the people who pay for him and his officers find this to be a big dangerous problem? Maybe he doesn’t have to get up early, or keep pets from running out the door in fear, or try to keep kids asleep from all that racket. I hate the fact that these things are even legal–what is the point of having an ordinance if the cops won’t enforce it? Maybe it is time for Chief Garvin to go–he’s made his attitude toward a public problem very clear.

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  23. They are doing what the market will bear. The market being the residents and as residents most do not pay attention to what is happening. We keep electing the same people over and over again and expect different results. The market bears it so they will continue to do it.

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  24. While I do think the Ordinance Department does a good job – a raise of over 20%? What the hell! We don’t have a council that does their jobs. All they do is put a check mark next to the items on the budget. Is there any history for raises of this much given within the city? Note to the council and the administration: DO NOT – I repeat – DO NOT come to me with any more new taxes because I will vote down EVERY SINGLE THING YOU ASK FOR. I have a great idea. Let’s start a petition to remove the current council. They won’t be missed and we’d probably have more money and we wouldn’t have to listen to the inane ramblings of one, the snoring of another, and the rude and condescending remarks from the rest.

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  25. I just watched the council meeting. I am inflamed by the arrogance and ignorance of our esteemed council. I get so upset when the residents are disrespected, and nothing and no one can or will do anything about it.
    Start with the Mayor. No, I can’t. I would use up all available space here. I will start with K. Baron, Mr. #One disrespectful. Don’t you know we can all hear what you say under your mic? LIke that should give you an excuse to be rude. M. Horvath has that position, How can you displace her? I just can’t go on listening to this crap. The residence expect a certain amount of respect and care, especially after voting you into this position. You certainly act differently at voting time. The residents deserve to be heard, and kept up to date on decisions made for them and their properties. Our tax dollars are spent “willy-nilly” (to use T. Brown’s words), not as we expect or understand that they will be. Raises for people who don’t even get more than a supposed 4 day work week? Oh, please! In my opinion, the employees of the city pay should reflect what the residents incomes are. Oh, wait. Most of the employees don’t live in the city, do they? Ahh, that’s why they can get a higher income. Something has to happen to bring the administration down to the level of the citizens they represent. What, or even when is a good question. As long as we keep paying, they keep spending, with no bother from the people who are paying.

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