GREAT SCOTTS: John Scott is many things — a hunter who just returned from a trip during which he nabbed a doe; a Republican; and a county commissioner representing portions of Waterford and West Bloomfield — but one thing he is not is a carpetbagger. How does Oakland Confidential know? Well, County Commissioner Tim Greimel (D-Auburn Hills) seems poised to be the next state representative for the 29th State House District, now that its former occupant, Tim Melton, has scurried off to California for another gig. Greimel quashed the competition in the Democratic primary for the party’s nomination on Nov. 2 and he will face a Republican in a district that — let’s face it — eats the GOP for breakfast. Presuming Greimel wins the seat, that could leave the 25-member county board with the unenviable task of finding his replacement. Don’t forget the Board of Commissioners is dominated by the GOP. “Naturally, with a 15-10 majority, it will be interesting to see how commissioners on my side of the aisle react,” Scott said of a potential appointment to fill the vacancy. “It wouldn’t be fair to appoint a Republican in a Democrat’s seat. I would oppose that. That’s the partisan stuff I don’t like.” Amen, John. What will happen? That sort of depends, according to Oakland County Democratic Party Chairman Frank Houston, who said that if Greimel doesn’t relinquish his county board seat by the end of the calendar year, the appointment would fall to the Board of Commissioners. Greimel couldn’t be reached for comment before this edition went to press.
ROGER THAT: We hardly knew ye, Bill Rogers. Well, we knew ye since ye were elected in 2008, but after the 2012 election, we’re going to have to take you off of our proverbial radar. It’s nothing personal, though — we promise. If the chairman of the state House Appropriations Education Subcommittee wants to get chippy about it (we don’t suspect that he will, but you never know), he can blame the state House and Senate GOP. That’s because the second-term Republican whose 66th state House District currently includes Milford told Oakland Confidential that he is running for re-election — no real surprise there, folks — but it will be in a new district, one that doesn’t include any lakes area communities. Under the new state House district lines, Milford falls in the brand spankin’ new 44th District, which would be Republican state Rep. Eileen Kowall’s fresh milieu. Currently, she represents White Lake and Highland townships; the new 44th District includes those same two communities, as well as Milford and a chunk of Waterford Township.
BUDGET BATTLE: Commerce Township Supervisor Tom Zoner enjoys the serenity of paragliding — “It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s … Tom?” — but getting the township’s Fiscal Year 2012 budget adopted won’t be smooth sailing. Trustees on the board, including Debra Kirkwood, are taking umbrage with higher paychecks for non-union employees under Zoner’s budget proposal; some are saying it’s an increase in wages, while others are calling it a restoration in a move akin to debating the pronunciation of “potato” or “tomato” (which, for the record, we pronounce with a long “A” sound). “The supervisor said he had presented a balanced budget and that we should not question it,” Kirkwood quipped, referring to two budget plans brought forward and defeated in an October vote and then tabled at a meeting earlier this month. “I am not a rubber stamp for the supervisor. I feel it’s my duty to vote in a manner that is in the best interest of the residents of Commerce Township.” The Z-Man said the impasse, if it isn’t resolved by Jan. 1, 2012, “puts us up against the wall” since the township would “have to approve each expenditure on a one-by-one basis.” The spat, said Trustee Rick Sovell, will likely produce “an interesting meeting” of the board come next month. And if a consensus isn’t reached? Well, Zoner said he would present five more budgets and have five public hearings if he has to. Talk about determination — which we also pronounce with a long “A.”