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Huntington Woods City Commissioner {_getChooseLabel(this.selections.length)}

TWO 4-year terms.Vote for up to TWO.
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    Jules Olsman Attorney

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    Joe Rozell Department Director, Oakland County

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    David C. Sloan Attorney - retired

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Biographical Information

Please provide biographical information and explain why you are running for City office and relevant qualities and skills you would bring to the position.

What are the top 3 Priority Issues that the city should address and what actions would you take regarding each of them?

My wife Barbara and I have lived in Huntington Woods since 1976. I am seeking election to my third term on the city commission. I served 6 years on the Planning Commission and 6 years on ZBA before my election in 2009. I am strongly support the Tri-Community Coalition and the Men=s Club. I have been a lawyer 39 years. I have extensive experience representing individuals in personal injury litigation in state and federal court. Our firm has a national reputation for representing seniors in litigation. I am a past president of the MI Association for Justice and past chair of the Negligence Law Section. I am a member of the State Bar Board of Commissioners. I have taught at MSU College of Law.

The city commission is a legislative body. We pass ordinances and policies. We are a functional, Collegial and careful body. My experience in organizations helps us achieve compromise and good results. My legal experience has helped in legal matters that have arisen and also helped to keep the city out of court. I am running for re-election to continue our excellent record of success.
1) The top priority of the city commission is financial stability. We will continue to control costs and unnecessary expenses. Our city has done well considering the economic climate of the past 8 years and problems with revenue-sharing in Michigan. We weathered the recession without seeking additional taxes. Working to reduce legacy costs and pension liability is a key goal.

2) We are televising and mapping our sewer system to make repairs that will prevent flooding in normal rainfall events. Engineering reports will reveal what repairs are needed and their cost. I will continue to work with our city manager and DPW to improve our infrastructure.

3) Rackham Golf Course is a regional jewel of great economic and aesthetic value to Huntington Woods. We are in discussions with Detroit officials in order to improve the golf course and the historic clubhouse. I helped form a blue ribbon committee to make recommendations regarding Rackham and Detroit’s other courses.Our mutual goal is to secure stable long term management resulting in better maintenance, beauty and increased revenue.
I'm running for re-election because I'm passionate about our city. When I moved here 13 years ago, I immediately began to volunteer my time to keep our city a great place to live and raise a family. I feel we have a great commission that is working hard and putting the best interests of our citizens first. If re-elected, I will continue to be a city commissioner who listens, is open-minded, accessible and works tirelessly to keep our community great.

EDUCATION: Bachelor of Science (Major Public Administration, Minor Communications) – Oakland University and Master of Public Administration – Oakland University

EXPERIENCE: Department Director, Oakland County and Adjunct Faculty, Oakland University

CIVIC ACTIVITIES: City Commissioner 2015-present, Mayor Pro Tem 2015, Planning Commission 2004-2010, Zoning Board of Appeals 2010-2015, Woodward 5 Sustainability Advisory Board, Oakland County Retirement Board 2012-present, Men's Club, High School sports referee

Continue investing in our sewer system infrastructure – We finished a two-year maintenance program of televising all sewer lines and cleaning roots/debris from the lines. This new program will continue going forward so that each section of the city in cleaned on a regular basis. Once the engineering report is complete, we will make the necessary repairs to the lines. This is critical infrastructure and I will continue to work with federal, state and county leaders on funding to help defray the cost.

Outreach and communication – I hosted quarterly “Cup of Joe, with Joe” residents meetings on evenings/weekends for residents to address their concerns/questions. I created the Commissioners Corner TV show to communicate information about the city to residents. I will continue to promote ways to increase communication.

Pension Funding – Use my experience with governmental budgeting and experience on the county pension board to continue to address our pension funding obligations. We worked with our labor unions to reduce costs and increased pension funding over the past two-years.
I first moved to HW as a child, went through the Berkley public schools. One of the best decisions of my life was to buy my home and raise my family in Huntington Woods. I want to help it remain the most desirable city in the area, with 21st Century planning and inclusion of more voices in the process. For the past three years I have been monitoring the city’s processes by attending all City Commission meetings, planning commission and the senior advisory committee

I have a BA Degree from Michigan State in Business administration and a law degree from the University of Detroit. I practiced law for 45 years and owned a retail business. As an active member of the Oakland County Senor Advisory Committee, I am concerned with helping seniors to stay in their homes and providing services so they can. As a member of the Huntington Woods Environmental Advisory Committee I have strong concerns about water and flood issues. We had floods in 2011 and 2014 and we must put in place environmental procedures and emergency plans.

1. Environmental considerations for city planning and flood prevention. I want to create an advisory committee of residents with professional skills to address water retention, overflow and capacity issues. I will promote this with city-wide campaigns and if necessary changes in city ordinances.

2. Financial sustainability – We have big ticket issues on the horizon which must be examined: sewer repairs, unfunded pension and health costs, outside contractor costs for attorneys, planning companies and engineers. I will examine how efficiently our tax dollars are used for the benefit of the residents. I will establish a grant writing team to help with revenue. I promise to retain the high quality of our services. I will continuously listen to the residents and present a clear and open city government with no secrets and nothing held back. We must expand the city committees to allow more voices

3. Universal Design – So seniors can stay in their homes and young families can utilize its benefits. I will promote this with city wide campaigns and if necessary changes in city ordinances. logo


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