May 28, 2021 People/Dining/Shopping/Events/Culture All defining Livonia
Ken Overwater is Kind
is kind and joins the hundreds of Livonia residents who have become a part of the campaign for kindness
Jan Myers is kind
On Memorial Day pause to reflect on three Livonia residents who served in the Civil War: The Wight Family

Most of the research for the names on the Wall at the Livonia Veteran’s Park Memorial Plaza was supplied by Sue Daniel, local historian, and long-time Livonia Historical Commission stalwart, supplemented on the Civil War panel by Alan Helmkamp, an amateur enthusiast of the 24th Michigan Infantry Regiment. Most of the Livonia men who fought in the Civil War served in the 24th, the so-called “Wayne County Regiment,” which was part of the famous Iron Brigade. The following information was graciously provided by Alan Helmkamp:

Three names on the Civil War panel were from the same family- William, Wallace, and Gurdon Wight. Following a War Rally on August 1, 1862, at Livonia Center, they enlisted. The first leader of Company K of the 24th was Captain William W. Wight, pictured left, a 45-year-old farmer. His two sons were in his company, Sergeant Wallace W. Wight, 18, and Private Gurdon L. Wight, 19, who also were farmers.

Wallace has the sad distinction of being the first Livonia man killed in action, in the 24th’s first action at the Battle of Fredericksburg, Virginia on December 13, 1862. From Curtis’ “History of 24th Michigan of Iron Brigade,” 1891:

“It was the regiment’s first fight. Nobly had it stood the fiery ordeal of its bloody baptism without the poor privilege of returning an answering shot. It had won the honor for itself and old Wayne County, but sorrow filled every breast. It was truly a mournful event when the Captain of Company K that night, searched for the trunkless head of his son upon the battlefield, while the canister was whistling above him, and placed it with the young boy’s remains for burial! Lieutenant Birrell and the latter, Sergeant Wallace W. Wight had slept together the night before and laid plans for the day’s contest. Alas, for human hopes! their dreams of youth were brief and they again slept side by side, in bloody graves.”

Gurdon was twice wounded- at the battles of Gettysburg and Petersburg, which ended his service with the amputation of his left leg.
William fought in almost a dozen engagements and was wounded at Gettysburg. He rose to the rank of Lt. Colonel, the highest-ranked Livonian in the Civil War and commanded the 24th for most of the first half of 1864. He is buried in the Livonia Center Cemetery and there is also a headstone for Wallace there (but it is unknown if his remains were returned and reinterned).
Council returns to
in-person meetings
The typewriter is happy to report that another step in our return to normal is underway as our Livonia City Council is returning to in-person meetings at City Hall with state and CDC COVID-19 precautions enforced.

The next council regular and study meetings, scheduled for June 14 at 7 p.m. and 8 p.m. respectively, will be the Council’s first in-person meetings since August 5, 2020.

“With the new guidance from the MDHHS the City Council is very pleased to be able to resume in-person meetings at City Hall,” said Council President Kathleen McIntyre.

“The Council is extremely grateful to our Information Systems Department for making our virtual meetings possible and successful during the past year, but we are ready and anxious to return to our work at City Hall welcoming meeting participants and attendees in person.”

Guidance from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention remains in effect at Livonia City Hall. Social distancing measures and capacity limits are in place for indoor gatherings through the end of June.
Library Scholarships
Please share with teachers, students, and parents: Students ages 13 to 18 in the Livonia or Clarenceville School Districts can apply for a scholarship from the Livonia Public Library.

Entries can be video commentary, scripted content, poetry, song, multimedia presentations, interview, skit, public service announcement but must be in a digital video format.

Each entry must focus on one or more of the following themes: Identity, Belonging, and/or Inclusivity. You may discuss what this theme means to you, how you embody this theme in your own life, or how we can foster an environment that brings this theme to life.

Entries should be submitted via Dropbox Transfer to the email address starting on June 15, 2021.

The deadline for submissions is 5:00 pm (eastern time, US) on Friday, September 3, 2021. Winners will be announced no later than Friday, September 17, 2021.

If you have questions, feel free to reach out.
Time to schedule summertime
music "from the heart"
Haley Stevens on Infrastructure
Livonia's Congresswoman Haley Stevens statement on the Moving Forward Act, a bill to rebuild American infrastructure while creating millions of good-paying jobs.

“Michigan’s incredible automotive industry put the world on wheels, but our roads and bridges are falling apart after decades of neglect. Our water infrastructure has also failed Michiganders, from the Flint Water Crisis to the Midland dam collapse to widespread PFAS contamination. Meanwhile, Michigan’s public school infrastructure is woefully outdated and our treasured Great Lakes ecosystem is threatened by pollution, erosion, and invasive species.

“These problems all stem from disinvestment in our infrastructure, not just in Michigan but across the country. Our crumbling infrastructure puts lives at risk and hinders economic growth. The Moving Forward Act is the bold, comprehensive approach we need to rebuild America’s infrastructure while creating jobs. This bill would address our most urgent challenges, from fixing our roads and protecting our water supply to safeguarding the future of the United States Postal Service.

“The Moving Forward Act also makes necessary investments in the sustainable, modern, 21st-century infrastructure our nation needs. The bill will spark investment in electric vehicle technology, incentivize the purchase of electric vehicles, increase connectivity by expanding access to broadband, and modernize our electric grid to accommodate more renewable energy.

“These critical infrastructure projects will require the full might of America’s workforce, creating millions of good jobs right here in the United States. As a Member of Congress representing a state that has experienced more than its fair share of infrastructure failures, I am eager to see this bill signed into law so we can begin rebuilding our nation.”

The Moving Forward Act includes:
  • The INVEST in America Act, a nearly $500 billion investment to rebuild and reimagine the nation’s transportation infrastructure by fixing our crumbling roads and bridges, improving safety, reducing gridlock, and putting the U.S. on a path toward zero emissions from the transportation sector by cutting carbon pollution, investing in public transit and the national rail network, building out fueling infrastructure for low- and zero-emission vehicles, and deploying technology and innovative materials.
  • Invests in schools with the Reopen and Rebuild America’s Schools Act, which funds $130 billion in school infrastructure targeted at high-poverty schools with facilities that endanger the health and safety of students and educators. This investment will help students get back to school and create more than 2 million jobs to help workers get back to work. 
  • Addresses structural challenges and upgrades child care facilities by leveraging a 5-year, $10 billion federal investment to generate additional state and private investments in making sure that child care settings are safe, appropriate, and able to comply with current and future public health directives.
  • Invests over $100 billion into our nation's affordable housing infrastructure to create or preserve 1.8 million affordable homes. These investments will help reduce housing inequality, create jobs and stimulate the broader economy, increase community and household resiliency in the face of natural disasters, improve hazardous living conditions, and increase the environmental sustainability of our housing stock.
  • Protects access to safe drinking water by investing over $25 billion in the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund and other programs to ensure all communities have clean drinking water and to help remove dangerous contaminants like PFAS from local water systems. 
  • Modernizes our energy infrastructure for a clean energy future by investing more than $70 billion to transform our electric grid to accommodate more renewable energy, expand renewable energy, strengthen existing infrastructure, help develop an electric vehicle charging network, and support energy efficiency, weatherization, and Smart Communities infrastructure.
  • Delivers affordable high-speed broadband Internet access to all parts of the country by investing $100 billion to promote competition for broadband internet infrastructure in unserved and underserved communities, prioritizing those with persistent poverty.
  • Modernizes the nation’s health care infrastructure by investing $30 billion to upgrade hospitals to increase capacity and strengthen care, help community health centers respond to COVID-19 and future public health emergencies, improve clinical laboratory infrastructure, support the Indian Health Service‘s infrastructure, and increase capacity for community-based care.  
  • Modernizes and strengthens the United States Postal Service by investing $25 billion to modernize postal infrastructure and operations, including a zero-emissions postal vehicle fleet and processing equipment.
  • Promotes new renewable energy infrastructure by incentivizing the development of wind and solar on public lands and building a workforce for offshore wind.
  • Promotes investments in our communities by spurring private investment through the tax code, through a revitalized Build America Bonds program, expansions of Private Activity Bonds, and significant enhancements to the New Markets Tax Credit and the Rehabilitation Tax Credit.