Welcome to the electronic newsletter from
Grand Haven Charter Township!

Stay informed on what is happening in the township. This newsletter will deliver up-to-date information including upcoming meetings, development news, township services and more!

You can always find more information on our website or Facebook.
$546,300 in Recreation Grants Awarded
The Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund (MNRTF) Board recommended two grants for Grand Haven Charter Township. These two MNRTF grants included:

  • $300,000 for the development of the Witteveen Farm and Wolf property (i.e., recent land acquisitions to Hofma Park and Preserve). The total cost of this project is estimated at about $874k.
  • $246,300 for the acquisition of a parcel along Groesbeck Street that is adjacent to and abutting Hofma Park and Preserve. This $328k project will add to the park property and provide a foot path entrance from Groesbeck Street – a request from property owners within the area. 

The Trust Fund Board recommendations will go to the Michigan Legislature for review as part of the appropriations process. Upon approval, the Legislature forwards a bill to the governor for her signature.

The formal grant offer will be made in the form of a project agreement after funds are appropriated by the State Legislature. This process could take four to six months.

That said, because the Township will want to acquire the “Groesbeck Street” land in 2021, staff can begin – after January 1st – to prepare for this land purchase by completing a Phase I environmental review of the property, prepare a 40-year title search, and complete the necessary appraisal.

Because the development project will not begin until 2022 – staff will have more time to prepare for this grant project.
$6 Million Bond Recommendation
The Township’s Parks and Recreation Committee – a Citizens Advisory group – recommended that the Township purchase a 20-year, $6 million bond to be used for capital improvements at Township Parks – with a major focus on the development of the Schmidt Heritage Park.  

As you may recall from earlier newsletters, the Schmidt Heritage Park will include a jogging trail, pickleball courts, various athletic fields, ball diamonds and the parking and restroom facilities to support these sports activities.
This recommendation will be brought before the full Board in January for approval of a bond resolution to authorize a vote at the May elections in 2021.

If approved by the voters, the park projects and improvements would be constructed in fiscal year 2022.
Costal Management Grant - Update
In addition to the two MNRTF grants, a Coastal Management grant for redeveloping the shoreline of Pottawattomie Park was re-instated at $140k. (This grant had been reduced to $117k earlier this year.)

The historically high waters have accelerated the erosion of the Pottawattomie Park waterfront – even undermining the concrete sidewalk. 

The project includes a redeveloped floating dock that will include a kayak launch.
Hofma Floating Bridge Repairs
The Hofma Floating bridge was torn from its moorings and damaged during a storm event in November of 2019. Because of the need to upgrade the supports, delays caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, and permitting requirements through the State of Michigan, repairs were delayed.

Recently the Township Board approved a $132k bid from Riverworks Construction to upgrade the moorings (to prevent this type of damage from reoccurring) and reinstall the floating bridge. It is expected that repairs can begin in late Winter or early Spring and will be completed before May.
Remote Work and COVID-19 Precautions
Because of COVID-19 pandemic and because of an Emergency Rule from the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA) regarding remote work (i.e., the employer shall create a policy prohibiting in-person work for employees to the extent that the work activities can feasibly be completed remotely), the Township implemented certain workplace modifications that are intended to (1) limit physical contact with the public; (2) curtail physical contact among staff; and, (3) comply with the directive from MIOSHA.

More specifically, in order to reduce the potential for community spread of COVID-19, the following changes have been implemented by the Township:

  • The Township Lobby is closed to the public with all payments, permits and other activities completed remotely (e.g., mail, drop box, electronic payments, etc.).
  • Fourteen (14) employees in the Township Administrative Building are working remotely – at least on a partial basis.
  • The Public Services department implemented stricter COVID-19 procedures – including no longer going into residential homes, except for emergency situations.
  • The Fire/Rescue department re-evaluated their COVID-19 procedures and added additional precautions and measures.

The Township is still completing all normal tasks – such as building inspections, answering phone calls and emails, tax collections and receipts, grave openings, water system testing, emergency medical responses, etc. – but, all activities are being done in a fashion that reduces the risk of Township workers being exposed to or spreading the COVID-19 virus.

The MIOSHA rules are valid until mid-April.
Residential Assessment Increase for 2021
Pursuant to the requirements of state law, the Township’s Assessing Director notes that the Assessed Value increase↑ for residential properties in Grand Haven Township will be about 7.65% overall for tax year 2021. This is based on the sales study for Residential Properties sold in the Township from April 1st of 2018 through March of 2021.

That said, the inflation rate multiplier which is used to calculate the Taxable Value increase↑ for residential properties that qualify for a Principal Residence Exemption (PRE) will only be 1.4%.
Electronic Meetings to Continue
Because of the COVID-19 pandemic and the impact of the “second wave” of infections, Grand Haven Charter Township will continue to have virtual, electronic meetings for the foreseeable future.  

Governor Whitmer approved legislation allowing for virtual meetings under the Open Meetings Act. The Public Act requires an explanation within 18 hours of the meeting for why it needs to be held virtually, ensuring two-way communication for members to hear each other, posting agenda updates online and establishing how the public can view meetings.

All of the material for Township Board meetings may be viewed at

This material is the same information provided to the elected officials – except any legal opinions that might be discussed in closed sessions. In addition, the agendas (and OMA postings) will contain information on how the public can participate in these Zoom meetings. 

Township Questions?
If you have specific questions about Township operations, please send an email to bcargo@ght.org .
(616) 842-5988  | info@ght.org | www.ght.org