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VOTE411 Voter Guide

Dexter City Council {_getChooseLabel(this.selections.length)}

The city shall have a Council-Manager, non partisan form of government. There shall be a City Council consisting of six (6) Council Members and the Mayor who shall be deemed a Council Member for all purposes. All legislative and governing powers of the city shall be vested in the City Council. The Council shall have the power and authority to adopt such ordinances and resolutions as it shall deem proper in the exercise of its power.All terms of office shall commence at the first regularly scheduled or special meeting of Council following the date of the election certification.
  • Jim Carson Candidate did not respond.

  • Paul Cousins Retired Restauranteur

  • Candidate picture

    Donna L. Fisher Retired school employee

  • Julie A. Knight Retired

  • Cole Miller Stage Manager

Change Candidates

Biographical Information

What in your education and experience make you qualified for this position?

What are your specific goals should you be elected and how will you work to accomplish them?

What actions would you take to ensure the character and vitality of downtown Dexter?

Which areas of the the city budget would you fight to retain or increase? Which areas would you be willing to cut?

What can city council do to ensure that Dexter is a great place for families to live?

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Campaign Phone (734) 426-4765
How many years have you been a resident of this city? Village/City 35
Education BS Biology Advanced Environmental Studies
I was elected / served on the Dexter Village Council from 1992-1998 and 2005-2015 I served as a member of the Planning Commission, Arts Culture and Heritage Committee, Facilities Committee, Representative to the Huron River Watershed Council and serve as chair of the Tax Board of Review. I had previously served as a member of the Scio Twp. Tax Board of Review for 20 years and was chairperson for 5 years. I have a B.S. in Biology and taught for 20 years in the Dexter School System. I along with my wife, Pat owned and operated Cousins Heritage Inn in Dexter for 18 years.
I will work to have built a NEW Fire station in the City as well work to improve the City Offices and meeting space. This issue has been discussed in the Village/City for over 20 years and the delay has resulted in increases in construction costs for the projects. The council voted once to have a different site for the Office/ Meeting space over 7 years ago and then reversed the decision resulting in present day costs estimates of 4 times as much for similar space requirements. We are the only unit of government in Washtenaw County that does not have its own City / Township facility. I will also work to improve the PARKING issues DOWNTOWN.
The Park / Trail expansion in the Parks Master Plan should be followed and the extension of the present trail to the High School should be completed. We should also cooperate with the expansion of the trail system as planned to the west connecting with Chelsea and points north. With the demand for these type of amenities we must insure adequate parking for our visitors and not take up space presently designed for businesses in town. We should encourage businesses that are unique and different to attract visitors as well. With the planned addition of condos / apartments downtown a small grocery store / deli would be a great addition.
We must address the increase costs for Fire / Police protection. A separate millage or bond may be the answer. Dexter and Webster Townships have used this method to address their needs. We should seek a way to solve the City's needs. It is difficult to find ways to presently cut when we have increased costs and demands.
We can treat citizens and families as we did when we were a Village. No need to make it difficult to build a house, and have regulations to put in sidewalks to no where. We also need to help our Seniors and the Senior Center. We need to cut or modify any regulations that make it difficult for citizens / businesses and families to improve the City.
Campaign Phone (734) 649-5169
How many years have you been a resident of this city? 66
Education Dexter High School, Eastern Michigan-Elementary Ed
With their vote, the citizens of Dexter have given me the privilege of serving as both Village Clerk and City Council Member for multiple terms and I have learned much about local government in the process. I believe I have worked both cooperatively and effectively with my fellow elected officials and will continue those efforts. As a lifelong resident of Dexter and a 26-year employee of Dexter Community Schools, I have raised my two daughters in our City and have served in many community service organizations over the years. I believe I know my community well.
While working as a team to complete projects that are under way, we must continue to direct our efforts toward Wastewater Treatment Plant upgrades and seeking resolution and closure on City facilities questions. Getting input from the community regarding the financial burden they will incur with these undertakings is important to me. A sizable request for annexation will soon come before Council and diligent fact finding and taking community opinion will be critical for an informed decision. As a Council Rep, being accessible, listening with an open mind and making it easy for residents to be informed are also high priorities for me.
I fully support of Council’s undertaking its Master Plan update in concert with its development of an Economic Strategy Plan, a process that began this month. It is cost effective to have the two chosen consultants working together. The end-result will be a plan to guide land use and development and a comprehensive plan for recruiting and supporting businesses. Council's Economic committee working on the City-DDA downtown infill project at 3045 Broad Street must focus on a development agreement in harmony with our lovely and historic downtown character. Communication with current business and their needs is important for business retention.
Our current financial plan is a result of competent guidance by City Staff members, ongoing progress with items evaluated in our Capital Improvements Plan and Council’s continued thoughtful, responsible budgeting. There has been no real need to cut areas or fight for their retention. As a diverse, yet respectful and cooperative Council we have been able to do provide not only basic services but amenities enjoyed by residents of all ages. Seeking grants and looking at collaboration on regional issues, the proposed Baker Road roundabout for an example, are ways to stretch City dollars.
I love the “sense of place” we feel in our City. Among the things I appreciate most are the friendly people, the caring neighborhoods, the safe environment, the beautiful trees and open space areas, the vital business community, the arts and culture opportunities and the excellence of Dexter Schools. We have all these assets to share with families and businesses that may wish to join us. We all must continue working together to retain these qualities that we hold dear.
Campaign Phone (734) 426-4961
How many years have you been a resident of this city? 6 years in village/city, 62 years in Washtenaw County
Education high school, some college, numerous classes in local government
My education consists of 12 years at Dexter High School, classes at Washtenaw Community College and numerous courses and classes pertaining to local government. I have many years experience in local government as an elected official: 30+ years at the township level and 5 years in the village/city.
One of my goals at this time is to locate a suitable location for a new fire hall and city offices. I hope to accomplish this by building a consensus among the elected officials to support this concept.
Dexter is a very desirable city in which to live. Maintaining our parks and downtown area is key to the character and vitality of our community. Encouraging a variety of businesses and restaurants will add to the success of our community.
Our city budget is right on track at this time. We take pride in maintaining our millage rate as one of the lowest in the county.
City council members must be willing to listen to our residents needs and concerns and address them.
How many years have you been a resident of this city? 33
Education Graduate of Dexter High School (2002) Graduate of The University of Michigan (2007)
I have a lifelong love of the town that raised me. I was educated in Dexter schools from Copeland to the "new" high school before attending college at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor and graduating in 2007. For the past 33 years I have experienced the rapid growth and changes as our village became a city. I have grown up alongside Dexter as we have added new school buildings, new neighborhoods, and many new neighbors. I want to ensure that the changing face of Dexter doesn't alter its essential small town character.
Dexter is one of Michigan's most desirable and therefore one of its fastest growing communities. It is natural that the city is going through growing pains. Traffic and parking are a headache for people trying to visit Dexter businesses, or for those residents simply on a daily commute. Dexter's infrastructure and its essential services will need to keep pace with it's growing population and the expanding area they cover. I am running for city council because I feel that while growth is to be expected in such a great city, we should strive to maintain the core and character of the village that has made Dexter so appealing in the first place.
Much of Dexter's current growth is happening at the edges of the city. It would benefit downtown Dexter most for the future city council to prioritize density in residential and commercial development - building up instead of out - while preserving the beautiful and historic Main Street area. A small town with all of life's essentials in walking distance gives Dexter its year-round vitality.
Candidate has not yet responded.
Affordable housing in Dexter is an increasingly scarce commodity. As new and striving families are priced out of this area they are also excluded from the sort of place that offers their children a better chance to get ahead in life and Dexter risks losing it's essential character as an setting for the American Dream. In my experience, Dexter has always had a wonderful sense of community that has made it a great place to raise a family. Maintaining that in the face of the challenges presented by rapid growth in area and population will require that our city council actively seek out and engage new members of Dexter's community. logo


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