I believe that the Gaines Township police chief and supervisor acted irresponsibly by putting the residents at risk by going on TV and announcing to all the criminals in Genesee County that Gaines Township exists, and they are laying off police. Thankfully the State Police Commander said State Police patrols would be increased in Gaines Township. And I have recently seen an increase in state police patrols and the sheriff.
Mostly the state police have always handled major and minor crimes in the area.
The group of us campaigning to turn down the proposed police millage are not “anti-police” or the new catch phrase “defund the police” as some falsely claim or insinuate. We attend meetings and have been for years and are still against wasting our tax dollars on duplicating police services already paid to fund the state police and the sheriff and area drug enforcement and spending Gaines tax dollars on two roundabouts with dirt roads on one end and a bridge in the city limits of Swartz Creek.
A year or so ago the state of Michigan sent Gaines Township a letter complaining they were not being financially responsible.
I attend Township meetings regularly and for the last several years have personally spoken in front of the township board a few times in favor of a police chief for Gaines Township, like what had been successful for many years, funded out of the general fund. But not a six or seven person police force with gear, equipment, training, etc.
For the last several years the Gaines police cars have set in the township parking lot most of the time and when will Gaines Township police ever use the remote-control spike strip they bought?
Our leaders are showing their disrespect for the wishes of the voters of Gaines Township by proposing this millage on an “off” election year and after residents petitioned to stop a forced police assessment and petitioned for it to be voted on , then the residents voted the assessment down by a 3-1 margin.
The Gaines Township police chief has taken a new job as chief for the Corunna Police Department. When the township supervisor was asked at the last meeting what his plan for the police department is if the millage passed. He said they will hire a chief and see what he wants to do. And keep the police vehicles we have.
If they were to sell a couple of the expensive police equipped vehicles, they can fund the police chief for a couple of years without taking any money out of the general fund. Please vote May 4. — Robert Henderson, Gaines Township