Grant agrees to ban marijuana businesses

September 15, 2019

By Pat Maurer

The Grant Township Board unanimously adopted an ordinance Tuesday evening that prohibits recreational marijuana businesses in the township. The ordinance will now be published and will take effect 30 days after that.
The matter has been an item of discussion at the township meetings for several years.

The ordinance does not prohibit medical marijuana facilities in the township.

Dysinger noted that the new ordinance “restricts land use,” the first like it in the township.

Penalties for violation of the ordinance a “municipal civil infraction” include a fine not less than $100 or more than $500 (at the discretion of the Court. Violators will also be assessed costs for the infraction.
In addition each day that the violations continues will be considered a separate offense.

The ordinance will be administered and enforced by the Ordinance Enforcement Officer of the township or another person designated by the township board.

In another matter a lengthy dispute over an oil well on Grant Township property is now settled, Dysinger told the board at Tuesday’s meeting.
Dysinger explained, “In 1985 Grant Township entered into a mineral lease for the 160 acre section 18 property.  In 1986 an oil well was drilled by JEM Petroleum and later transferred ownership to Bob Adams and Associates Inc.  Eventually by ownership changes the well (Grant 1-18) is now owned by Ranch Productions from Pentwater MI.  For a number of years the Township has hit roadblocks in determination of why royalties were not reimbursed to the Township per the original lease.  After a 2 or 3 year effort the agreement we have reached makes up for some of the lost royalty.  It is now up to both parties, the Township and Ranch Productions to monitor compliance with the agreement we just signed.”

The settlement includes a $15,000 payment to the township for past royalties from well production which now must total 100 barrels annually.
The township attorney is Topp Law PLC and the Ranch Productions attorney is McClintic & McClintic.

The township board also accepted a policy on the annual rubbish assessment, and denied a request for a waiver of the charges from Ken Casebere. The policy outlines an assessment for all dwellings in the township except travel trailers and camping trailers unless they are parked on private property for a permanent residential purpose, whether they are connected to utilities or not. Factors will be used to determine residency (where a person lives, votes, pays taxes, gets mail, or where personal belongings are and where the person resides according to their driver’s license and where they bank.

Vacations homes are temporary living quarters used at various times of the year, but not permanent.

The ordinance says there are no exceptions to the annual rubbish assessment because “the service is available whether it is used or not.”
Other business at the meeting included:

*A report on Road Commission activities from board member Tim Haskin, who said six candidates have been interviewed for the manager’s position.
*A presentation from Farwell Superintendent Steve Scoville on the upcoming bond issue for renovations and improvements to the school district’s buildings and infrastructure. Dysinger noted that about 50 percent of the township is in the Farwell School District.
*County Commissioner Leonard Strouse reported on business at the county meetings. He noted that the Drain Commission will be asking for $250,000 for the Little Tobacco Drain. He also expressed frustration that the costs for law enforcement take money away from programs to improve the county.
*The board agreed that the rental fee for the township hall will not be reduced for non-profit organizations because it would set a precedent and be unfair to other renters.
*The board also approved replacing the hall copier.
*They approved bills to be paid totaling $57,956.48.

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