Observer 3/20/2015 : Page 1

It’s Official! Saugatuck Voted “The Best Coastal Small Town In America” Page 3 RJ Peterson’s Request To Expand Dredge Spoils Site Along Blue Star Highway Nixed By DEQ Page 3 Presorted Standard U.S. Postage Paid Saugatuck MI Permit No. 30 CURRENT RESIDENT THE LOCAL OBSERVER WE BRING YOU THE NEWS SERVING March 20, 2015 Vol. 13 No. 12 FREE SAUGATUCK * DOUGLAS * SAUGATUCK TOWNSHIP * LAKETOWN TOWNSHIP * FENNVILLE * GLENN * GANGES TOWNSHIP * HAMILTON * HOLLAND * SOUTH HAVEN Douglas City Council Takes Unprecedented Step In Appointing -Then Booting -Tim Glinski From Douglas DDA Board Efrain Sandoval Correspondent In an unprecedented move, the Douglas City Council revoked the appointment of a person to a board, and did so at the very next council meeting preceding the meeting in which that person was appointed. The action to remove Tim Glinski from the Douglas Downtown Development Authority (DDA)— approved in a four-to-three roll call vote—was not part of Monday night’s agenda. the DDA, per the recommendation of lowing: the council had a different self and who voted against Glinski’s Douglas Mayor James Wiley, passed response to Glinski’s words he spoke revocation—knew before Monday in a five-to-two vote at the March orally at a meeting before his appoint-night’ meeting what some of his col-2nd meeting, with Douglas Mayor ment and those same words read in leagues were up to and planning on Pro-Tem Martha Hoexter and printed form. doing because on Monday he read Douglas Council Member Gerald At a meeting last month on aloud from a prepared, printed state-Schmidt being the dissenting voices. February 16, before Glinski’s nomina-ment. Monday’s turn of events— tion and subsequent approval to the He severely admonished done without the benefit of an DDA, Glinski read aloud from a pre-those colleagues who voted for extended discussion beforehand— pared statement offering his views on Glinski’s revocation. puzzled some of the attending public ways to revitalize the economically Visibly upset, Wiley read, and shocked Glinski, who was also struggling downtown district, specifi-in part, “This is the most negative present at the meeting. cally positing that government ought and ill-informed action I’ve seen this “I am at a loss to know what to have a role in that effort. council make in my four years here. substantially has changed “And I want to (between today and two take this opportu-“From what I can tell from this discussion, weeks ago),” Glinski told nity to publicly there is extreme prejudice.” -Tim Glinski council following the apologize to Mr. vote to revoke him. Glinski.” “From what I can tell from That same statement was Elsewhere he noted, “Does this discussion, there is extreme prej-later sent to some city officials as well this council not realize what a chal-udice. as provided to a local newspaper lenge it is to attract and encourage “This removal can be done which later printed the statement ver-qualified residents to participate and without any notice?” Glinski asked, batim a couple of days following volunteer in local questioning whether the council had Glinski’s nomination to the DDA. government?…Would Mr. Glinski’s just violated the Open Meetings Act On Monday, Seabert, who ideas and votes always align with oth-since the public—particularly those was present at the February 16 meet-ers on the DDA? We will now never half a dozen residents who wrote let-ing where Glinski read aloud his know. ters supporting his candidacy and sev-statement, said he had read the state-“First we approved his eral who went before council to speak ment in the newspaper—the written appointment and now we un-positively about his qualifications and version of Glinski’s comments which approved it,” added Wiley. “But what character—had not been given the was printed—and had found the lan-we need now in a downtown Douglas same opportunity to speak about the guage “pessimistic.” (are) new ideas. And council mem-revocation process as they had been Seabert called on council to bers, please put this in perspective. given during the approval process. remove Glinski and replace him with Mr. Glinski would be one of nine What occurred between a candidate that possessed a more DDA members…it takes five out of Monday and two weeks ago that positive disposition to confront the nine votes to pass any motions on the caused some council members to have pervasive problems facing the down-DDA.” a change of heart? town district: economically lagging Douglas Council Members If indeed the reason the and failing to attract visitors. Greg Harvath and Eric Smith joined council gave for revoking Glinski’s But not all were on board Wiley against the revocation, extend-appointment is true— without con-with Seabert. ing a thank you to Glinski for his par-sidering other possible factors at Douglas Mayor James ticipation and for wanting to serve on play—then the easy answer is the fol-Wiley—a DDA representative him-the DDA. Meanwhile, Douglas Mayor Pro-Tem Martha Hoexter and Douglas Council Members Bill Japinga and Gerald Schmidt joined Seabert in the vote to remove Glinski. The remarks Glinski made at the February 16 meeting—later printed in a newspaper verbatim— that were apparently the cause of con-tention, read, in part: “…in light of the Council being addressed by a vocal downtown merchant (referring to John Thomas, owner of Phillip & Son Jewerly, Thomas Greene, and the soon-to-open Mixed Media Gallery) who merely leases space in downtown, and who feels that ‘government’ shouldn't have a role in the downtown, I strongly object. “As a property owner heavi-ly invested in Douglas, I want to reg-ister my position formally…For example, the subject of “hours of operation” has once again been raised by this individual. “I do not know of a mer-chant or property owner who know-ingly closes their doors to refuse busi-ness or turn customers away. Such an idea is nonsense. “Hours of operation are typically set based on Douglas as a tourist destination, and enough cus-tomers are not present to justify the expense of opening in the dead of winter.” Glinski is the former Douglas Village president (2002 to 2004), a former Douglas DDA member (1999 to 2002), a long-time resident and property owner and business owner in the downtown business district. Douglas Mayor James Wiley Douglas Council Member Neil Seabert, who had approved Glinski’s appointment at the previous meeting, had the item added to the agenda for a vote. Glinski’s appointment to

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