|Andrea Voorheis served as a White Lake Township trustee from 2004 to 2008 and has worked as a coordinator and key carrier at T.J.Maxx for the last 8 years. She is a member of White Lake Presbyterian Church, the White Lake Parks and Recreation Commission, White Lake Historical Society, and White Lake Citizens League. She is also a Meals on Wheels volunteer and in the past has served the American Red Cross, as a deacon for her church, and the White Lake 4-H Club.|
Ten candidates — Todd T. Birkle, Carol J. Burkard, Mark S. DeGroff, Randy J. Hebert, Rik Kowall, David Lewsley, Patti Page, Michael C. Powell, Scott Ruggles and Andrea C. Voorheis — are competing in the Tuesday, Aug. 7 Republican primary election for four trustee positions on the White Lake Township Board of Trustees. Since no Democrats are running, the top four vote-getters in the primary election will earn four-year terms that pay $681.25 per month.
The following are questions we posed to Voorheis, and her responses to those questions.
BUDGET: All municipal governments in Michigan have faced difficult budget scenarios over the past few years, as declines in property values have produced a revenue stream that can’t keep up with various rising costs. What changes in township budgeting priorities or processes do you advocate to deal with these hurdles? Where could the township’s budget be trimmed back? What, if anything, in the budget should be held harmless from the budget ax?
VOORHEIS: Due to the cost of rising health care, we could change the policy that gives full-time elected officials full health care benefits after 8 years of service. Other township staff members pay their costs when retiring.
PUBLIC SAFETY MILLAGES: For years there has been discussion at the township board level about consolidating the township’s various millages for police and fire services into one levy. Tell us why you do or don’t support that idea. Please state why you do or don’t support the public safety millages appearing on the primary election ballot.
VOORHEIS: I think that White Lake should keep the public safety and should not contract to Oakland County, as some of the rumors have been going around (have indicated). The township has been doing a great job with the resources that they have been given. We should do what it takes to keep the quality of service that we now enjoy.
DEVELOPMENT: White Lake has seen a boom in development in recent years, with everything from small businesses to “big box” stores opening up, particularly along M-59. Is there a point when there is “too much” development in White Lake? As supervisor, what, if anything, would you do to attract new businesses to White Lake? When will it be appropriate, if ever, to revisit the corridor improvement authority concept in the township?
VOORHEIS: I would keep the “big box” stores on M-59, and the manufacturing on the west end of the township. We can easily have development along with control of where the development is. I like how the master plan has helped control this development.
TOP ISSUES: What are the three most important issues for the township, and how do you propose to address them?
VOORHEIS: No. 1, continue the good communications between productive business and the growth of White Lake. No. 2, provide good service to residents. No. 3, deliver results to residents in response to their needs.
WHY YOU? Why specifically should voters choose you over your opponent?
VOORHEIS: I will make sensible decisions that balance our concerns for smart growth, natural conservation and recreation.