Dexter City Council Meeting: Appointment of new council member among busy agenda

By: Aimee Bingham Osinski

Approval of minutes from June 9th and June 14th with a minor adjustment from Jamie Griffin. The motion carried.

Approval of agenda; Two additional items were added to the agenda. Zach is abstaining from the consent agenda because his employer is on it. The agenda motion carried.


Dan Sclaff: June 17 Dexter Crossing Project meeting with 27 people in attendance. Bids are due July 1st and construction will start in mid August.  We got lucky with the  rain only just over 2 inches and Dexter fared better than many Michigan communities. Water usage is doing well.  Rain seems to be helping.

Michelle Aniol: The planters are doing really nicely thanks to the rain.  The banners look really nice on the barricade thanks to Dexter Print and Embroidery.  Resident fall tree planting applications are open until August. Trees are really limited this year so if there are more applications the resident will be put on the list for Spring. Millennial Place has submitted for final site plan review.

Justin Breyer:  Wave contract will be on the next meeting agenda. Tags are being issued today for recycling. You can get two tags and the second tag will result in non-pickup.  Parks and recs have created a survey on ping pong tables.  Jamie offered some edits to the survey. The survey will go out shortly. ACHC is returning to in person meetings in September.

The mayor asked if the council would like to return in person in September as well.  Justin will bring an item back for the next meeting. The Council has access to St. Andrews.  Jamie wanted to know if there would be a Zoom for the public?  The mayor wants to continue the Zoom.   There is enough time to address that and get it handled.

The Mayor: Council workshop at 6 pm to the city council search. The council completed his recommendations for boards and commissions.  The Mayor is on the host committee for the Huron River watershed council event.  He’s going to be encouraging people to buy tickets to the event. Concerns about the blue barricades were a safety hazard.  No conclusions were made at the  DDA meeting. No action items at the fire department meeting.  Waiting for the opening of the Webster Fire Station.

Zach submitted a written report but had no additional comments.

Wa discussed Dexter Pride, which she was able to attend and speak.  Wa noted how much has changed in the past 20 years.  It was heartbreaking to hear that the community is still experiencing mental health issues and bullying. Wa encouraged the council to step up as leaders of the community and put a stop to any bullying they see.

Consent agenda was approved.

Old Business City Council Vacancy;  APPOINTMENT OF SANAM ARAB TO FILL SEAT VACATED BY JULIE KNIGHT (TERM ENDING NOVEMBER 2022) AS RECOMMENDED BY THE MAYOR – A DESCRIPTION OF THE PROCESS IS INCLUDED IN THE PACKET. The mayor allowed for questions and the vote was called. Motion passed.  Dexter has a new City Council member! Paul noted that there is now a majority of women on the council.

New Business:

1. Consideration of: General Appropriations Act to Adopt the FY 2021-2022 Budget. Justin thanks the council for working with staff through the process. The budget will eventually be posted on the website.  The motion carried.

2.Setting a Public Hearing on July 26, 2021 for the Conflict of Interest Ordinance. Zach just wanted to know if amendments could be made.  Justin stated that non substantial amendments can be made but broad sweeping changes. A motion to postpone the item was made.  The motion passed.

3.Setting a Public Hearing on July 26, 2021 to Consider an Amendment to the General Code of Ordinances for Small Cell Wireless Infrastructure Regulation. The motion carried.

4. Proposal from OHM Advisors for Retainer-Based As-Needed Staff Assistance for an Amount not to Exceed $18,400. If things are shifted and this is not needed, it is possible to be flexible with the contract. The motion carried.

5. Seeking the Support of an External Facilitator. Jamie is trying to help wade through the fire station issue that has not been resolved and believes the council could benefit from an outside perspective. The MML offers council training and continuing education. MSU will help lead the conversation and help find a way forward.  They offer a two hour visioning session. Jamie noted the city manager search has taken 8 months and the fire station issue has been around for years and years.  The Mayor does not feel that the fire station issue has not turned personal.  He would like to have this discussed on the next meeting’s agenda.  If after the next meeting  there seems to be an issue moving forward he is happy to move forward with a facilitator.  Zach is not optimistic that anything will be resolved. More than half of costs between now and 2016 will be escalation costs. Wa would like to have a discussion and try prior to bringing someone in.  Donna Fisher agrees with Wa. Jamie is fine waiting until Sanam joins and noted that since the Mayor has been the Mayor the issue has not been resolved.  There is something that is not working.  Paul stated  that it would have only taken one motion to get this resolved.  Paul noted that delaying has caused a huge escalation in cost. Webster and Dexter Township has nothing to do with  an independent decision for the city.  We have to do what’s best for the city. We have not had an open meeting in the Fire Hall.   The one vote we’ve never had was from the Mayor. Dexter is the main station in this unit. It is the center of the DAFD because of the population, the schools and the industry.  After a power outage, the council opted to move forward without further discussion.

6. Justin discussed AST; wants a phase 2  prior to signing off  on the property. The due diligence period will be extended to July 27th. Zach thinks it’s really important to do this due to the potential liability.  Will there be an additional cost to extending the purchase agreement?  ASTI is confident that the results will be back.  If there is no problem it could be a fast close.  But if there are problems it would require going back to the seller and a potential extension. Trying to keep the transaction moving forward while protecting Dexter’s interest.   July 19th falls between council meetings.  Will there be an additional council meeting to address?  The motion passed.

Council Comments:

Jamie stated that she did not receive a unanimous vote, referring to her no vote on Sanam.  There is no requirement that everyone receives 100% of the vote.  She looks forward to working with whomever is on the council.  She said welcome to Sanam.

Zach believes that staff needs more support than it is getting and that’s why he voted against the OHM option.

Alex Stated that he is grateful to  be coming back for another year and said welcome to council to Sanam Arab.

Bella was thanked for her contribution for the last two years. Bella said she had a great time sitting on council for the last two years.

The meeting went into a closed session to discuss pending litigation.




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