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March & April 2013
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2013 General Assembly Report

At the annual General Assembly of TMACOG members held Tuesday, January 29, 2013, TMACOG members endorsed the nomination of officers.

Re-elected for a 12-month term are:
Carol Contrada, Chair of TMACOG and President of the Lucas County Board of Commissioners
Nelson Evans, Vice Chair of TMACOG and Mayor of Perrysburg
Don Nalley, Second Vice Chair of TMACOG and City Council Member of Fremont

In other business, TMACOG President Anthony Reams read a special proclamation honoring Kenneth Fallows. Mr. Fallows is a past Chair of TMACOG and has been Chair of the Environmental Council since 2003.

SCROLL DOWN FOR SUMMARY REPORT OF 2013 GENERAL ASSEMBLY

Keynote Address
On the theme of Local Commitment Global Reach: How Companies Choose to Invest in Their Regions, TMACOG members learned about the process of deciding where to build a new corporate headquarters and how all the parties work together to get a plan from idea to breaking ground. Kurt Darrow, President and CEO of La-Z-Boy, explained how the company decided to build a new office campus on property that the Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, a local group of sisters, wanted to sell. In four short months, discussions and approvals were reached with the city of Monroe, the county of Monroe, Michigan Department of Transportation, bankers, various zoning and planning agencies, and of course, the sisters who were willing to sell the property. The Mayor of Monroe, Robert Clark, followed with how it looked from his side of the discussion. TMACOG members had questions ranging from the timeline, to labor issues, to possibilities for the old La-Z-Boy headquarters.

Following the keynote, members met in caucus sessions with their peers. All caucuses discussed how to provide services while tax income was flat and state income greatly reduced.

County Caucus
Elected and appointed officials on the county level talked about setting budgets for elected officials and encouraging restructuring. They are looking for ways to share services and increase the tax base.

City Caucus
Cities from around the region talked about the practical matters of sharing backhoes, sewer vacuum trucks, and other equipment. They are researching successful models and expanding the discussion from just elected officials to park systems and schools. They also discussed experiences with labor negotiations and binding arbitration.

Non-Governmental Caucus
The businesses that make up the Non-governmental Caucus talked about how they can help other TMACOG members. Non-governmental members volunteered to assist staff with their expertise. They find value in their membership when TMACOG helps them understand how business and government can work together. They asked for TMACOG Tech seminars directed toward the private sector including GIS.

School Districts, Colleges & University Caucus
This group wants to develop their caucus and involve more educational members in the work of TMACOG. Members also talked about their role in the community in workforce development and in attracting new business to the region.

Township Caucus
Townships are engaged with practical questions of sharing personnel and equipment. They noted that insurance regulations sometimes preclude the sharing that the state is encouraging. Other discussions included water supply and rate setting across state lines, building permits, state requirements for volunteer fire departments, and cemetery operation and revenue.

Village Caucus
Village representatives would like to learn about successful Local Government Innovation Fund projects. In the discussion of shared services, it was noted that schools often had better equipment than the municipality and might make good partners.

Special Districts and Authorities
Representatives of park systems, port authorities, and public transit agencies discussed ways that the groups could cooperate and cited recent successes: the Westside Corridor multi-use trail secured by parks, ports, the University of Toledo, and the City of Toledo; and a River Raisin Battlefield Project that was a project of the Port of Monroe and the City of Monroe. The caucus would like TMACOG to monitor changing air quality standards, support the plan to find alternative uses for dredged materials, and pursue funding for green infrastructure projects.


TMACOG Business meeting. From left, Nelson Evans, Tony Reams, and Carol Contrada.

TMACOG business meeting. Don Nalley

Kenneth Fallows accepts a special
service award.


The County caucus.

Leadership is sworn in by judge S. Dwight Osterud.


View more photos here


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