|Patti Page spent 40 years as an employee of the West Bloomfield Township Police Department. A graduate of West Bloomfield High School, she is a member of the Fraternal Order of Eagles, and a Bison member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars. She is past president of the Kiwanis of West Bloomfield, Keego Harbor and Orchard Lake.|
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 Page, 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?
PAGE: When dealing with the township budget, officials must keep in mind that there are “necessities” and items that could be considered “luxuries.” Residents have had to cut back and the township should do the same. At the present time, we do not need new GPS, or state of the art computer system or new phones. I would like to explore scheduling ideas and the purchasing process. If we are able to trim back in several small areas, they would add up to assist in the final budget. The township is operating on a skeleton crew now. We cannot afford to cut anymore employees.
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.
PAGE: We need to keep our own police and fire services. We need to renew the current millages. However, our residents and senior citizens can’t afford any more additional millages at this time. We do not want to tax any more of our residents out their homes.
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?
PAGE: We need to make White Lake Township affordable and desirable for present and future residents and businesses. This can be accomplished through policies and ordinances that are simple and easy to understand,
as well as affordable.
TOP ISSUES: What are the three most important issues for the township, and how do you propose to address them?
PAGE: No. 1, the economy of today and the needs of the residents and businesses. We need to listen to opinions of the residents and the long time business owners.
Elected officials need to set aside personal projects and need to be held to the same standards of developers.
Government needs to lead, not follow the big business shadows. Government is not a big business with respect to budget items or employees and must consider the needs of the residents.
WHY YOU? Why specifically should voters choose you over your opponent?
PAGE: I will bring honesty and common sense to the table and instill integrity back into the community.