Link dump on municipal consolidations underway in Michigan

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Several communities around the state are having conversations about mergers between municipalities, ranging from Onekama Village and Township (total population < 1,000) to Grand Rapids & Kent County, which, as a single municipality of 606,000 people, would be the 24th largest city in the United States, right between Seattle and Washington, DC. No time to process right now, but some assorted links...

One Kent: of the effects of legislation being passed around local government circles in draft form this week. A summary of the draft was leaked to The Press. One Kent Coalition, a group of influential business leaders who want to super-size the city's image on the national and world stage, introduced the merger to Kent County officials last week. The wording of the legislation needed to put the merge into play remains in flux, One Kent spokesman Nyal Deems said Tuesday.

Grand Rapids city commissioners today will hear a report that outlines 58 objections to proposed legislation from the One Kent Coalition that aims to combine city and county government functions.

A Kent County subcommittee aimed at exploring local government mergers, consolidations and cooperation should look beyond on the city-county merger proposal that spawned the group, county leaders said Tuesday.
“I think we should look forward and not behind us,” said Kent County Administrator Daryl Delabbio, referring to the One Kent Coalition's proposal to merge the city of Grand Rapids and Kent County.

Saugatuck / Douglas / Saugatuck Township:

The first step in a possible merger of Saugatuck, Douglas and Saugatuck Township into one town is under way. The Consolidated Government Committee — a grassroots organization pushing for a merger — plans to file a petition Wednesday with the Michigan State Boundary Commission to put the merger process on track for a vote in 2012.

Tri-Community Consolidation Committee

Onekema / Onekema Township:

Earlier this year, Onekama Township and the Village of Onekama started the official discussions of a merger. The talks also made history, with the two communities becoming some of the first in the state to discuss such a step. Officials unveiled the results of a several month-long merger study to residents at a meeting in June. While a merger would be voted on by Onekama residents, the communities are also getting some help from other organizations to take a closer look at the plan.

The Citizens Research Council (CRC) of Michigan has released a report that will help the Village of Onekama, Onekama Township and other local governments consider the possibilities of merging governments. The report is entitled "The Costs, Benefits and Alternatives for Consolidating the Onekama Governments".


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