Clayton Twp. officials to work toward improvement, growth in 2021

CLAYTON TWP. — Growth potential, police protection and road work top the list of priorities for 2021 in Clayton Township.

“We would like to try to get this COVID behind us; it certainly changes the way we do business,” said township Supervisor Tom Spillane. “With that in mind, we do have some big things to deal with this upcoming year.”

Topping that list is police protection and a request for renewal of the police millages. Spillane said the ballot question will reflect a combination of two existing police millages, one for 1.866, the other for 0.9574.

“It is extremely important for the community,” Spillane said. “Both the police department and the fire department serve our community extremely well.”

The Planning Commission will engage the public as they prepare to update the township’s Master Plan. Residents may weigh in via a survey. The link to the survey is available on the township’s website.

As part of that process, township planners are hoping to clean up more of the spot zoning, according to Zoning Administrator Ted Henry.

“There are still several areas where there is commercial spot zoning,” said Henry. “We’re trying to condense that down and get the Master Plan zeroed in on defined commercial areas and get the commercial out of the residential areas.”

The Planning Commission also hopes to revisit the small animal ordinance to regulate and allow residents to keep chickens, rabbits and similar animals in areas other than agricultural zoning.

“They are also looking at possibly a rental ordinance requiring registry of rental units and inspections biannually or if a tenant vacates,” Henry said.

Even with the pandemic, growth in the business sector continued in the township in 2020, and official are hoping to keep the momentum going.

Highlights of last year’s development included the construction of a new gas station on M-13 and Interstate 69, a major addition to One Source Supply on Elms Road, and the debut of Barley & Vine on Elms Road.

New home construction was down a little in 2020, compared to 2019, but township leaders hope to see that pick up again.

A new commercial building is planned for the area of M-21 and Old Corunna Road, and Swartz Creek Meadows is requesting a zoning change to create a campground on a portion of the modular housing community, Henry said.

As always, road projects are also on the table, although the work won’t be as extensive as in 2020, Spillane said.

“We have a couple gravel roads we need to do some work on, some ditching,” he said. “And, we are going to repave Duffield Road from the bridge to Miller Road. Last year, we did Duffield Road from the bridge to Bristol Road.”

Township administrators also will be negotiating with the police officers, and with Republic Waste Services, as both contracts are up for renewal this year.

Spillane said he expects negotiations with the police to go well.

“We have a great bunch of officers over there and we work well together,” he said.

Beyond that, the township is always looking for residents who want to get involved in the various committees and commissions.