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58 Results

  • Contains 1 Component(s)

    Get an overview of statutory authority for both zoning and non-zoning ordinances, as well as expert tips for drafting effective ordinances.

    Now You Know - Drafting Effective Ordinances

    Are your ordinances tailored to your township’s needs and vision? Ordinances can be used to protect residents and retain the character of your community. Join MTA legal counsel for an overview of statutory authority for both zoning and non-zoning ordinances, and get tips for drafting effective ordinances.

    This is part one of our new three-part series! Part two, held May 18 will review proper adoption procedures and part three, held July 13, features successful enforcement strategies. Why three parts? Because properly written and enforced ordinances not only boost your credibility, they limit public complaints and assist with fair and effective enforcement. One important topic in three bite-sized pieces. Register for parts 2 and 3 online at https://www.michigantownships.org/now_you_know.asp.

    **Premium Pass members: This webcast is already part of your subscription. To access, click MY WEBCASTS, then click the Premium Package link to view this webcast, or to access other webcasts included in your package.**

    Roxanne Seeber

    Attorney

    Roxanne C. Seeber is an attorney at the Kalamazoo law firm of Bauckham, Sparks, Thall, Seeber and Kaufman, PC. Her practice focuses on ordinance drafting and enforcement, zoning and land use issues. Roxanne prosecutes ordinance enforcement and unsafe buildings cases in Allegan, St. Joseph, Cass, Kalamazoo, Van Buren and Calhoun County District and Circuit Courts. She routinely provides advice to zoning administrators, ordinance enforcement officers and other township officials. She is a graduate of Western Michigan University and the University of Toledo College of Law.   

  • Contains 1 Component(s)

    This quick and informative session offers tips on how to find (and select!) the best attorney for your township team.

    Now You Know - Why You Need a Township Attorney

    Townships operate in a world of laws. Having an attorney to turn to can help you identify red flags and nip potential legal trouble in the bud. But the challenge is finding the right attorney! One that specializes in the type of law your township needs AND understands your community priorities and challenges. This one-hour recorded webinar reviews of the nuances of a township’s relationship with its legal counsel. You'll walk away with tips on how to find (and select!) the best fit for your township team.

    **Premium Pass members: This webcast is already part of your subscription. To access, click MY WEBCASTS, then click the Premium Package link to view this webcast, or to access other webcasts included in your package.**

    Catherine Mullhaupt

    Staff Attorney, Member Information Services

    Catherine provides township officials and employees with information and resources regarding the day-to-day functions of township government. She writes for the "Hello, MTA...?" and Legal Briefs columns, and other articles in the Michigan Township Focus, develops MIS Department resource materials and webpages, authors MTA publications, and presents workshop and conference sessions, as well as live and recorded online courses.

    She joined MTA in 1991, spending her first nine years in MTA's Education Department writing and editing articles for the Township Focus and MTA publications. She coordinated educational workshops and the annual MTA trade show, and assisted in coordinating the annual MTA educational conference. 

    She was admitted to the State Bar of Michigan in 2006 and is currently the MTA Staff Attorney.

  • Contains 1 Component(s)

    Get a quick, one-hour update on all aspects of managing your township meetings.

    Now You Know - Meeting Management: What to do When Things Change

    Townships across the state are planning their 2022 meeting schedule, but we’ve all heard the saying about ‘the best laid plans.’ Listen in as we go beyond simply setting the schedule with a review of how to change your public meetings schedule, including the noticing requirements, who can participate virtually in meetings now and more!

    **Premium Pass members: This webcast is already part of your subscription. To access, click MY WEBCASTS, then click the Premium Package link to view this webcast, or to access other webcasts included in your package.**

  • Contains 1 Component(s)

    Get a quick, one-hour update on what's happening in Lansing and what to expect for 2022.

    2021 Legislative Wrap-up

    This webinar provides a quick look into today’s political landscape and details on hot issues affecting your township—including the appropriation of the state’s $6 billion in federal American Rescue Plan Act funding and MTA’s efforts as part of a statewide coalition to leverage the funds for our communities. Hear the latest on recent legislative action, get an end-of-the-year wrap up and discover what's on deck for 2022. 

    **Premium Pass members: This webcast is already part of your subscription. To access, click MY WEBCASTS, then click the Premium Package link to view this webcast, or to access other webcasts included in your package.**

    Judy Allen

    Director of Government Relations

    MTA

    As director, Judy oversees MTA’s legislative efforts to advocate on legislation impacting township government. She represents the interests of MTA members before the Legislature and the administration.  

    Judy began working for MTA in 2012 and has previous experience working with state and local governments. Prior to coming to MTA, Judy served as Director of Government and Community Services of Oakland Schools, where she advocated on behalf of 28 districts in Lansing and Washington, D.C. Judy has also served as Chief of Staff to the Senate Majority Leader and was later appointed by then Gov. John Engler to serve as Chairperson of the Michigan State Liquor Control Commission.

  • Contains 1 Component(s)

    Get a quick one-hour review of tax collection basics, designed with the whole board in mind.

    What the Board Needs to Know about Tax Collection

    Tax collection is a mandatory function of every township. While collecting property taxes is the treasurer’s duty, the entire board makes decisions about how the revenue will be used. Every board member should understand the tax collection (and administration) process. Whether you are a seasoned official or still fairly new to the game, you can’t afford to miss this overview of tax collection basics designed with the whole board in mind.

    **Premium Pass members: This webcast is already part of your subscription. To access, click MY WEBCASTS, then click the Premium Package link to view this webcast, or to access other webcasts included in your package.**

  • Contains 9 Component(s)

    Get access to all the learning from our 2021 Supervisors' Retreat in a convenient, on-demand format! Topics include: Managing Adversity & Hostility, What Every Supervisor Should Know About the Land Division Act, Meeting Management and More, OMA, Commissions and Committees--Oh My!, State and Local Relationships... and Your Role, Back to the Budget: Lawful Expenditures, Grants: You’ve Got Questions? We’ve Got Answers, Your Role in Assessing (and Board of Review, too!), and HR Strategies for Supervisors.

    Neil Sheridan

    MTA Executive Director

    MTA

    Sheridan has a rich background in local government, beginning as a teenager and then being a member of the Groveland Township (Oakland Co.) Planning Commission and its Board of Review for 12 years. He has helped lead numerous Michigan efforts focused on regional economic development. Sheridan co-authored an economic strategy with Public Sector Consultants for the Small Business Association of Michigan (SBAM) called “Accelerating Growth,” which Gov. Gretchen Whitmer later said she would use in her administration. Previously, he led a group of 80 townships, cities, nonprofits, businesses and governments to produce a comprehensive economic development game plan for coordination with the state and federal governments.

    Sheridan was president of SVPI, an advisory and management services corporation active internationally. He has worked with hundreds of corporations, nonprofits, foundations, governments and small businesses on strategy, innovation and performance improvement initiatives. He is a past member of the SBAM board of directors and previously led an SBAM Legislative Action Committee task force. Additionally, he’s served on healthcare, community development, cultural and foundation boards for many years.

    Sheridan is also a researcher on leadership and innovation. He has taught workshops and courses at Michigan State University, the University of Michigan and others on strategy, marketing, management and entrepreneurship.

    Judy Allen

    Director of Government Relations

    MTA

    As director, Judy oversees MTA’s legislative efforts to advocate on legislation impacting township government. She represents the interests of MTA members before the Legislature and the administration.  

    Judy began working for MTA in 2012 and has previous experience working with state and local governments. Prior to coming to MTA, Judy served as Director of Government and Community Services of Oakland Schools, where she advocated on behalf of 28 districts in Lansing and Washington, D.C. Judy has also served as Chief of Staff to the Senate Majority Leader and was later appointed by then Gov. John Engler to serve as Chairperson of the Michigan State Liquor Control Commission.

    Michael Selden

    Director of Member Information Services

    Michael Selden is MTA's director of Member Information Services. As director, he supervises the development and delivery of Association member information programs and services.

    Before joining MTA in November 2015, Selden served as the city manager of Wayland, Mich., for three years. In that role, he prepared and managed the city budget, supervised 22 employees, oversaw multiple city departments and served as liaison to numerous boards and commissions. Selden also served as the city manager of Bangor, Mich., from 2007-2012. He holds a master’s in public administration from the University of Michigan—Flint, where he also earned a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice.

    Nancy Ohle

    Organizational Development Consultant

    Nancy Ohle has been a leader and mentor in local government Strategic Planning, Leadership Development, Performance Management, and neutral facilitation for over 25 years. Her consulting and executive coaching partnerships have spanned townships, municipalities, public utilities, school systems, non-profits, and Fortune 100 industries. She is a frequent speaker for groups across the country, as well as a sought-after facilitator, coach, and consultant.

    Rob Thall

    Attorney & MTA Legal Counsel

    Bauckham Sparks Thall Seeber & Kaufman P.C.

    After receiving his law degree from Cooley Law School, Robert Thall joined the law firm of Bauckham, Sparks, Thall, Seeber & Kaufman, PC, in which he is now partner. With extensive experience in municipal law, Rob serves as general or special counsel to many general townships, charter townships, as well as sewer and water authorities throughout the state. Rob is also lead counsel for MTA and is a frequent author and speaker for MTA and other municipal groups around the state. 

    Cindy Dodge

    MTA Member Information Liaison

    Michigan Townships Association

    MTA Member Information Liaison Cindy Dodge joined MTA in 2006 from Williamstown Township in Ingham County where she served as Clerk since 2005. She has been involved with the township since 2003 as assistant to the supervisor, planning commissioner, and assistant to the planning commission. She is currently a Michigan Certified Assessing Officer. Via phone, fax and e-mail, Cindy provides township officials and employees with information and resources regarding the day-to-day functions of township government. She is also the Association liaison for MTA county chapters, develops MIS Department resource materials, and presents workshop and Conference sessions as well as teaching live and recorded webinar courses.

    Ron Liscombe

    Attorney, Principal

    Miller Canfield

    Ron Liscombe is an attorney and principal with Miller Canfield. He has deep knowledge of state and local government, having worked in a variety of policy and program management roles prior to joining the firm, including Chief Sustainability Officer for the City of Lakeland, FL, policy counsel in the Executive Office of the State of Michigan, and an associate attorney at a local law firm representing both public and private sector clients. 

    MTA retreats offer education tailored to your role in your township

    No one understands townships or your roles and responsibilities like the Michigan Townships Association. That’s why we’ve created our unique Professional Development Retreats offering more than 10 hours of intensive learning targeting the challenges (and opportunities!) you face while providing the information you need to succeed. Whether you've been in township government for 2 years or 22 years, you can’t afford to miss these intensive learning (and networking!) events designed specifically for your role as a township official. Sessions offered include:

    Managing Adversity & Hostility
    We all encounter unreasonable people, whether it’s an unhappy resident or a board member with an opposing view. It’s easy to let those challenging individuals impact our attitude. Learn how to avoid personalizing others’ behavior (and comments!) and maintain self-control to avoid escalating the problem. Get strategies for winning better rapport, cooperation and respect. 

    What Every Supervisor Should Know About the Land Division Act
    The Land Division Act regulates the separation of land into parcels, sets standards for creating subdivision lots and ensures the land is suitable for building. From application forms to property history, dig into the details that impact your role and help ensure the review and resulting divisions are in compliance.

    Meeting Management and More
    It’s hard to run fair, efficient and effective meetings without proper preparation and ground rules. Delve into preparation techniques, strategies for ensuring all voices are heard and tips for keeping your meetings on track. 

    OMA, Commissions and Committees ... Oh My!
    We all know the township board must comply with the Open Meetings Act (OMA), but what about those other township boards and committees? Do they need to comply? If so, how do they do it? Get a review of how appointments are made to different township boards and committees including what they need to know to keep themselves—and the township—out of OMA trouble.

    State and Local Relationships ... and Your Role
    Do you know, on average, the number of bills introduced each legislative session that impact local authority? The percentage is higher than you might think. Often these bills limit local control—sometimes they even eliminate it! Learn what you can do to shape future laws and make a positive impact. You will gain an overview of the legislative process while also learning key principles of advocacy success—interactions with legislators and their staff and strategizing for both short- and long-term advocacy success.

    Back to the Budget: Lawful Expenditures
    Budgeting is one of the best ways to ensure control of your township’s finances. But knowing what your township can spend money on is the first in a long list of legal stipulations involved with township finances. Before you spend another township dime, let’s spend a little time reviewing lawful (and unlawful!) expenditures. 

    Grants: You’ve Got Questions? We’ve Got Answers
    Before you invest time, energy and effort, it is important to understand the process and adjust your expectations  accordingly. Gain insights into the many steps involved, from resources to research and preparation to proposal. Discussion includes insights into reporting and uses.

    Your Role in Assessing (and Board of Review, too!)
    Property assessment is a key function of township government and as the township’s “chief assessing officer” the supervisor plays a key role in ensuring that assessing is handled accurately and professionally. A lot has changed in the last two years, including new (and expanded!) requirements for assessors. This impacts your board of review too! Review what your assessor should be providing and new requirements for the board of review, particularly in the areas of personal property tax, veteran exemptions and more.

    HR Strategies for Supervisors
    Good governance includes being an effective employer. This requires townships to face many concerns that other employers face in recruiting, hiring and managing people. Review common employment issues that can become traps for townships and walk away with policies every township should adopt.

  • Contains 9 Component(s)

    Get access to all the learning from our 2021 Planning and Zoning Team Retreat in a convenient, on-demand format! Topics include: Bring Your Whole Team Together to Win the Zoning Game, Meeting Guidelines & Ground Rules, Are You in Control of Your Meeting?, Dealing with Difficult Issues (and People!), Managing Township Development, Understanding & Reviewing Site Plans and Variances, Adopting and Amending Ordinances, What You Need to Know Now About Renewable Energy Ordinances, and Master Plan Must Haves (and Have Nots).

    Neil Sheridan

    MTA Executive Director

    MTA

    Sheridan has a rich background in local government, beginning as a teenager and then being a member of the Groveland Township (Oakland Co.) Planning Commission and its Board of Review for 12 years. He has helped lead numerous Michigan efforts focused on regional economic development. Sheridan co-authored an economic strategy with Public Sector Consultants for the Small Business Association of Michigan (SBAM) called “Accelerating Growth,” which Gov. Gretchen Whitmer later said she would use in her administration. Previously, he led a group of 80 townships, cities, nonprofits, businesses and governments to produce a comprehensive economic development game plan for coordination with the state and federal governments.

    Sheridan was president of SVPI, an advisory and management services corporation active internationally. He has worked with hundreds of corporations, nonprofits, foundations, governments and small businesses on strategy, innovation and performance improvement initiatives. He is a past member of the SBAM board of directors and previously led an SBAM Legislative Action Committee task force. Additionally, he’s served on healthcare, community development, cultural and foundation boards for many years.

    Sheridan is also a researcher on leadership and innovation. He has taught workshops and courses at Michigan State University, the University of Michigan and others on strategy, marketing, management and entrepreneurship.

    Michael Selden

    Director of Member Information Services

    Michael Selden is MTA's director of Member Information Services. As director, he supervises the development and delivery of Association member information programs and services.

    Before joining MTA in November 2015, Selden served as the city manager of Wayland, Mich., for three years. In that role, he prepared and managed the city budget, supervised 22 employees, oversaw multiple city departments and served as liaison to numerous boards and commissions. Selden also served as the city manager of Bangor, Mich., from 2007-2012. He holds a master’s in public administration from the University of Michigan—Flint, where he also earned a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice.

    Bill Fahey

    Attorney

    Bill Fahey is a founding partner of the law firm Fahey Schultz Burzych Rhodes. The firm has been recognized as one of the “Best Law Firm’s in America” by US News & World Report. Bill has represented large and small townships across Michigan for 35 years and regularly teaches MTA workshops on a wide range of township legal issues.

    Steve Langworthy

    Planning & Zoning Guru

    Steve Langworth received a Masters of Urban Planning from the University of Michigan and spent 6 years as a planning director and zoning administrator for the city of Kentwood, Michigan (among others), and over 20 years as a consulting planner, most recently with LSL Planning in Grand Rapids. Prior to retiring, Steve held the position of Director of Land Use & Long Range Planning for the city of Dublin, Ohio.

    Steve has authored numerous Master Plans, Zoning Ordinances, and special studies for communities of all sizes and characteristics. He is a frequent MTA presenter and the principal author of MTA’s Township Guide to Planning and Zoning and Township Planning & Zoning Decision-making Handbook.

    Chris Patterson

    Attorney

    Fahey Schultz Burzych Rhodes PLC

    Chris Patterson joined the firm of Fahey Schultz Burzych Rhodes PLC in 2013 after two years serving as Law Clerk for Federal District Court Judge, the Honorable Lawrence P. Zatkoff. Chris received his Juris Doctor from Michigan State University, and holds a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Western Michigan University. He specializes in general municipal law, as well as commercial and real property law.

    Ron Liscombe

    Attorney, Principal

    Miller Canfield

    Ron Liscombe is an attorney and principal with Miller Canfield. He has deep knowledge of state and local government, having worked in a variety of policy and program management roles prior to joining the firm, including Chief Sustainability Officer for the City of Lakeland, FL, policy counsel in the Executive Office of the State of Michigan, and an associate attorney at a local law firm representing both public and private sector clients. 

    Seth Koches

    Attorney

    Bauckham, Sparks, Thall, Seeber & Kaufman P.C.

    Seth Koches is an attorney at Bauckham, Sparks, Thall, Seeber & Kaufman P.C. Prior to joining the firm, Seth worked as an assistant prosecuting attorney for 7 years in the Oakland County and Kalamazoo County Prosecutor’s office prosecuting cases from simple retail fraud to criminal sexual conduct and assault with intent to murder. Seth’s primary practice encompasses nearly every aspect of municipal law including annexation, ordinance enforcement, planning and zoning, and amicus writing. 

    John Jackson

    President

    McKenna

    John Jackson is President of McKenna, offering world-class urban design, planning and development services. John participates in a wide range of projects, bringing more than 30 years of experience in planning, urban design, and economic development. His expertise in urban design is instrumental in the creation of real life solutions for the people who live in the communities with which he works. He ensures that the implementation of any vision can be realized; from master planning to the day-to-day practicalities of small-scale projects. Among his top skills is his ability to translate complicated development strategies into cohesive physical solutions, making sure that the project’s vision is never lost. John holds a Bachelor of Environmental Design from Miami University and a Master of Urban Planning from The University of Michigan.

    Laura Genovich

    Attorney

    Foster Swift Collins & Smith PC

    Laura Genovich practices commercial law, bankruptcy law, and municipal law at the Grand Rapids office of Foster Swift Collins & Smith PC. She works closely with municipal clients on issues related to many aspects of township law, including zoning, real estate transactions, public finance, and much more. She handles complex property tax appeals and has special expertise in property tax exemptions and special assessments. Laura also works with both public entities and private clients (including developers) on land use matters, including development agreements, annexations, Act 425 agreements, and zoning approvals, and is a regular presenter for MTA and other organizations around the state.

    Leslie Abdoo

    Attorney & Shareholder

    Foster Swift Collins & Smith PC

    Leslie Abdoo is a member of Foster Swift's Municipal and General Litigation Practice Groups. Leslie advises the firm's public entity clients including cities, townships, counties, villages, libraries and local health departments on compliance with applicable state and federal laws. Her areas of expertise include civil infraction ordinance and code violations, zoning, planning and land use, inter-local agreements, and drafting ordinances for marijuana, wind energy, solar energy, short-term rentals, and broadband internet.

    MTA retreats offer education tailored to your role in your township

    No one understands townships or your roles and responsibilities like the Michigan Townships Association. That’s why we’ve created our unique Professional Development Retreats offering more than 10 hours of intensive learning targeting the challenges (and opportunities!) you face while providing the information you need to succeed. Whether you've been in township government for 2 years or 22 years, you can’t afford to miss these intensive learning (and networking!) events designed specifically for your role as a township official. Sessions offered include:

    Bring Your Whole Team Together to Win the Zoning Game

    Zoning and planning involve complex rules, much like chess, where each team member has unique powers and make different moves to achieve the township’s goals. Gain a better understanding of the roles and responsibilities of the planning commission, zoning administrator, zoning board of appeals, and township board. Learn how the team can work better together to provide more effective planning strategies and reach more defensible zoning decisions.

    Meeting Guidelines & Ground Rules
    How can you play the game if you don’t know the rules? In this game, rule number one is you must comply with the Open Meetings Act (OMA)! Gain insights into the law, tips for remembering the rules and tricks for ensuring your playbook keeps your township in compliance.

    Are You in Control of Your Meeting?
    Being unprepared is certain death for a meeting. Proper preparation doesn’t just ensure you’re ready, it allows you to be purposeful in allocating time to deliberate important topics. Get tips for meeting prep, techniques for ensuring all voices are heard and review the basic considerations of public hearings and public comment.

    Dealing with Difficult Issues (and People!)
    Land use changes may be viewed by residents with suspicion, fear, questions—and even anger. It can be difficult to maintain the decorum and professionalism necessary of public bodies when faced with a roomful
    of concerned people. This session will help you identify strategies for dealing with controversial land use changes in your community.

    Managing Township Development
    One of the more challenging situations a planning commissioner faces is holding fast to the master plan when a proposal is inconsistent. Temptations to cave when “something is better than nothing” or “just this
    once won’t affect our vision” will certainly disrupt what you spent so much time planning for. Learn techniques to help your township be proactive in holding out and avoid a reactionary selling out.  

    Understanding & Reviewing Site Plans and Variances
    Interpreting the zoning ordinance, classifying unlisted land uses, and approving or denying variances can be highly controversial and likely to end up in court. Learn the criteria for issuing variances, and the limits on discretion for issuing special use permits and site plan approvals. Get tips for examining findings of fact, as well as the methods of proper documentation and delivery of the decision. Delve into conditions of approval and examine the steps necessary to ensure compliance with ordinance requirements and applicable laws.

    Adopting and Amending Ordinances
    Your township’s zoning ordinance helps steer the character of your community. But even the best ordinances become out of date. Dig into the process of reviewing your township’s ordinance needs and the steps
    you need to take to amend it to ensure your township’s zoning ordinance is current and effective.

    What You Need to Know Now About Renewable Energy Ordinances
    As the popularity (and profitability!) of alternative energy soars, townships are seeing increasing numbers of special land use requests from energy developers, including those harnessing both wind and solar  energy. This session will help you tailor your ordinances and develop land use standards to regulate wind and solar energy farms. 

    Master Plan Must Haves (and Have Nots)
    Your township’s master plan is an overall guide for growth and development, providing guidance for its future direction. Learn the ins and outs of master plans from what should be included to how (and how  often) you should be reviewing and updating it.


    Many thanks to Shumaker Technology Group for their generous sponsorship of this retreat!

    Schumaker Technology Group

  • Contains 9 Component(s)

    Get access to all the learning from our 2021 Treasurers Retreat in a convenient, on-demand format, available for three months following purchase! Topics include: Accounting Software: Why it Matters, Increasing Your Investment IQ, Managing Adversity & Hostility, State and Local Relationships... and Your Role, What Treasurers Need to Know About Personnel Management, Delinquent Personal Property Tax Review, Understanding Special Assessments, Grants: You’ve Got Questions? We’ve Got Answers and Tax Collection Insights from the County.

    Neil Sheridan

    MTA Executive Director

    MTA

    Sheridan has a rich background in local government, beginning as a teenager and then being a member of the Groveland Township (Oakland Co.) Planning Commission and its Board of Review for 12 years. He has helped lead numerous Michigan efforts focused on regional economic development. Sheridan co-authored an economic strategy with Public Sector Consultants for the Small Business Association of Michigan (SBAM) called “Accelerating Growth,” which Gov. Gretchen Whitmer later said she would use in her administration. Previously, he led a group of 80 townships, cities, nonprofits, businesses and governments to produce a comprehensive economic development game plan for coordination with the state and federal governments.

    Sheridan was president of SVPI, an advisory and management services corporation active internationally. He has worked with hundreds of corporations, nonprofits, foundations, governments and small businesses on strategy, innovation and performance improvement initiatives. He is a past member of the SBAM board of directors and previously led an SBAM Legislative Action Committee task force. Additionally, he’s served on healthcare, community development, cultural and foundation boards for many years.

    Sheridan is also a researcher on leadership and innovation. He has taught workshops and courses at Michigan State University, the University of Michigan and others on strategy, marketing, management and entrepreneurship.

    Cindy Dodge

    MTA Member Information Liaison

    Michigan Townships Association

    MTA Member Information Liaison Cindy Dodge joined MTA in 2006 from Williamstown Township in Ingham County where she served as Clerk since 2005. She has been involved with the township since 2003 as assistant to the supervisor, planning commissioner, and assistant to the planning commission. She is currently a Michigan Certified Assessing Officer. Via phone, fax and e-mail, Cindy provides township officials and employees with information and resources regarding the day-to-day functions of township government. She is also the Association liaison for MTA county chapters, develops MIS Department resource materials, and presents workshop and Conference sessions as well as teaching live and recorded webinar courses.

    Jeff Anderson

    Regional Director

    Michigan Class

    Jeff serves as a Regional Director of Marketing for Michigan CLASS. Prior to joining Michigan CLASS, Jeff most recently served as the Finance Director and Deputy Treasurer for Delta Charter Township where his responsibilities included accounting, auditing, annual budget preparation, purchasing, portfolio management, and many other finance related duties for the last 15 years. He additionally served as the Accounting Manager for Neogen Corporations, a publicly traded bio-tech company in the Lansing area. Jeff received a Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting from Western Michigan University.

    Jeff is an active member of the Michigan Municipal Treasurers’ Association, the Michigan Governmental Finance Officers Association, and the Knights of Columbus. Jeff has enjoyed teaching municipal budgeting classes for the MMTA and other municipal organizations over the last several years. He previously served on the Michigan CLASS Board of Trustees for six years.

    Nancy Ohle

    Organizational Development Consultant

    Nancy Ohle has been a leader and mentor in local government Strategic Planning, Leadership Development, Performance Management, and neutral facilitation for over 25 years. Her consulting and executive coaching partnerships have spanned townships, municipalities, public utilities, school systems, non-profits, and Fortune 100 industries. She is a frequent speaker for groups across the country, as well as a sought-after facilitator, coach, and consultant.

    Judy Allen

    Director of Government Relations

    MTA

    As director, Judy oversees MTA’s legislative efforts to advocate on legislation impacting township government. She represents the interests of MTA members before the Legislature and the administration.  

    Judy began working for MTA in 2012 and has previous experience working with state and local governments. Prior to coming to MTA, Judy served as Director of Government and Community Services of Oakland Schools, where she advocated on behalf of 28 districts in Lansing and Washington, D.C. Judy has also served as Chief of Staff to the Senate Majority Leader and was later appointed by then Gov. John Engler to serve as Chairperson of the Michigan State Liquor Control Commission.

    Rob Thall

    Attorney & MTA Legal Counsel

    Bauckham Sparks Thall Seeber & Kaufman P.C.

    After receiving his law degree from Cooley Law School, Robert Thall joined the law firm of Bauckham, Sparks, Thall, Seeber & Kaufman, PC, in which he is now partner. With extensive experience in municipal law, Rob serves as general or special counsel to many general townships, charter townships, as well as sewer and water authorities throughout the state. Rob is also lead counsel for MTA and is a frequent author and speaker for MTA and other municipal groups around the state. 

    Ron Liscombe

    Attorney, Principal

    Miller Canfield

    Ron Liscombe is an attorney and principal with Miller Canfield. He has deep knowledge of state and local government, having worked in a variety of policy and program management roles prior to joining the firm, including Chief Sustainability Officer for the City of Lakeland, FL, policy counsel in the Executive Office of the State of Michigan, and an associate attorney at a local law firm representing both public and private sector clients. 

    Mary Gladstone-Highland

    MPA, CFRE, CNP

    Spark Group Consulting

    Spark Group Consulting was founded by Mary Gladstone-Highland. Mary is a Certified Nonprofit Professional with fourteen years of experience leading organizations. Mary is a graduate of the Maxwell School of Citizenship & Public Affairs at Syracuse University. She holds a Master of Public Administration and a Certificate in Advanced Study in Conflict and Collaboration. She is also a Certified Fund Raising Executive and has raised over $3.4 million for numerous organizations over the past five years. Mary is skilled at analyzing large amounts of information to find creative solutions to complex problems. She strives to use an asset-based approach in every situation.

    Christina Wichert, MA

    Spark Group Consulting

    Christina Wichert is a mission-focused nonprofit professional with over a decade of working in multi-cultural environments, and seven years working internationally. She holds a Masters of Arts from American University in Washington DC, with a concentration in International Peace and Conflict Resolution. She also holds a graduate certificate in Sustainable Development from the American University in Cairo, Egypt. Her experience includes delivering conflict analysis, interactive conflict intervention, and facilitating Problem Solving Workshops as a conflict resolution strategy. As well she is skilled in dialogue facilitation; strategic planning for sustainability; and program design, development and evaluation.

    Catherine McClary

    Treasurer

    Washtenaw County

    Catherine McClary was first elected Washtenaw County Treasurer in 1996. As Treasurer, McClary is a constitutional officer with authority to receipt and reconcile all County revenues and to manage the County’s investments. By State law, she is mandated to collect delinquent property taxes, including foreclosing on property with unpaid taxes. Prior to serving as Treasurer, McClary built a solid reputation as a stockbroker and investment banker. She served as Chair of the Washtenaw County Board of Commissioners. She is a member of various professional associations and volunteers for a number of community organizations.

    MTA retreats offer education tailored to your role in your township

    No one understands townships or your roles and responsibilities like the Michigan Townships Association. That’s why we’ve created our unique Professional Development Retreats offering more than 10 hours of intensive learning targeting the challenges (and opportunities!) you face while providing the information you need to succeed. Whether you've been in township government for 2 years or 22 years, you can’t afford to miss these intensive learning (and networking!) events designed specifically for your role as a township official. Sessions offered include:

    Accounting Software: Why it Matters
    A great accounting system presents information clearly, so you can find what you need when you need it. It also helps ensure accuracy, from the time of transaction to the final report of financial statements. Join this lively discussion on ‘hows and whys’, review who does what, when and explore ideas on what software can do to lighten your load. 

    Increasing Your Investment IQ
    Review basic investment strategies and identify lawful investments for township funds. Learn more about what your township’s investment policy should cover and get tips on the concept of liquidity. Walk away with insights (and lessons learned!) when it comes to investing in a low  interest rate environment.

    Managing Adversity & Hostility
    We all encounter unreasonable people, whether it’s an unhappy resident or a board member with an opposing view. It’s easy to let those challenging individuals impact our attitude. Learn how to avoid personalizing others’ behavior (and comments!) and maintain self-control to
    avoid escalating the problem. Get strategies for winning better rapport, cooperation and respect. 

    State and Local Relationships ... and Your Role
    Do you know, on average, the number of bills introduced each legislative session that impact local authority? The percentage is higher than you might think. Often these bills limit local control—sometimes they even eliminate it! Learn what you can do to shape future laws and
    make a positive impact. You will gain an overview of the legislative process while also learning key principles of advocacy success—interactions with legislators and their staff and strategizing for both short- and long-term advocacy success.

    What Treasurers Need to Know About Personnel Management
    Review the most effective (and easiest!) ways to keep track of your township’s employee information and to comply with record retention schedules, confidentiality and privacy laws. We’ll examine the most common recordkeeping issues and best practices for personnel management to help keep your township in compliance. 

    Delinquent Personal Property Tax Review
    Collecting personal property taxes, particularly when they become delinquent, is challenging and difficult. Learn the property owner’s responsibility for reporting personal property and possible penalties for not reporting. Review tools for collecting personal property taxes when
    businesses move or close. Gain insight on the correct procedure for collecting delinquent personal property taxes, including small claims court and seizure, and striking uncollectable taxes. 

    Understanding Special Assessments
    Learn the ins and outs of special assessments, from procedures necessary to establish enforceable special assessments for public infrastructure projects to the provision of police, fire or ambulance services. Discussion includes the treasurer’s role when it comes to collecting special assessments as well as recent court decisions holding certain special assessment contracts unenforceable (discover why and how to avoid this precarious situation!).

    Grants: You’ve Got Questions? We’ve Got Answers
    Before you invest time, energy and effort, it is important to understand the process and adjust your expectations accordingly. Gain insights into the many steps involved, from resources to research and preparation to proposal. Discussion includes insights into reporting and uses.

    Tax Collection Insights from the County
    Your county treasurer is an integral part of your tax collection team! Working together helps you get a handle on reporting and deadlines, keeps settlement on track and so much more. Spend some time walking in a county treasurers shoes and take away tips for strengthening your tax collection team.

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    Get access to all the learning from our 2021 Clerks Retreat in a convenient, on-demand format! Topics include: What Every Clerk Needs to Know About Personnel Management, Managing Adversity and Hostility, Understanding Unemployment, Auditing Fundamentals for Federal Funding, Your Role with the Open Meetings Act (OMA), FOIA: What You Need to Know Now, Elections Update, State and Local Relationships… and Your Role, and Why Websites Matter.

    Cindy Dodge

    MTA Member Information Liaison

    Michigan Townships Association

    MTA Member Information Liaison Cindy Dodge joined MTA in 2006 from Williamstown Township in Ingham County where she served as Clerk since 2005. She has been involved with the township since 2003 as assistant to the supervisor, planning commissioner, and assistant to the planning commission. She is currently a Michigan Certified Assessing Officer. Via phone, fax and e-mail, Cindy provides township officials and employees with information and resources regarding the day-to-day functions of township government. She is also the Association liaison for MTA county chapters, develops MIS Department resource materials, and presents workshop and Conference sessions as well as teaching live and recorded webinar courses.

    Cindy Lakin Morely

    Managing Partner

    Concentric Learning and Development

    Cindy Lakin Morley is Managing Partner at Concentric Learning and Development, where she is a leader in organizational development, performance management and training design and delivery. 

    In her role as Corporate Learning Director at Delta College, she developed partnerships with Fortune 100 organizations such as Dow Chemical and General Motors, to design and deliver local and global learning solutions. In addition, Cindy facilitates a variety of leadership, team-building and communication skills workshops and  has led workshops across the United States, in the Netherlands, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, China, Thailand, Malaysia and India.

    Bill Tucker, CPA

    Principal

    Maner Costerisan

    Bill brings more than 20 years of experience specializing in government and nonprofit auditing and consulting. He leads the firm’s government team and is a partner in the audit department, always looking for innovative solutions to help municipalities and government entities achieve their goals.

    Bill is committed to sharing his knowledge and insight on all things government audit and accounting with his clients and teammates. He regularly contributes thought leadership articles to Maner’s website and presents at industry conferences and committees. Additionally, he’s taken a strong role in helping ensure the entire government team stays up to speed on regularly evolving federal guidelines around COVID-19 funding and reporting – essential requirements for government entities of all sizes.

    Bill discovered his love for accounting after taking a single accounting class at Michigan State University. His passion for the profession continues to grow, as he’s able to offer clients new solutions to complex problems. Accounting offers him the opportunity to work in a diverse and dynamic industry, while helping clients improve their operations and meet their strategic objectives.

    In his free time, Bill enjoys active hobbies including hockey, golf, and skiing. He and his wife, Michele live in Haslett, Michigan, with their two children, Will and Josalin and their dog, Stanley Cup.

    Catherine Mullhaupt

    Staff Attorney, Member Information Services

    Catherine provides township officials and employees with information and resources regarding the day-to-day functions of township government. She writes for the "Hello, MTA...?" and Legal Briefs columns, and other articles in the Michigan Township Focus, develops MIS Department resource materials and webpages, authors MTA publications, and presents workshop and conference sessions, as well as live and recorded online courses.

    She joined MTA in 1991, spending her first nine years in MTA's Education Department writing and editing articles for the Township Focus and MTA publications. She coordinated educational workshops and the annual MTA trade show, and assisted in coordinating the annual MTA educational conference. 

    She was admitted to the State Bar of Michigan in 2006 and is currently the MTA Staff Attorney.

    Judy Allen

    Director of Government Relations

    MTA

    As director, Judy oversees MTA’s legislative efforts to advocate on legislation impacting township government. She represents the interests of MTA members before the Legislature and the administration.  

    Judy began working for MTA in 2012 and has previous experience working with state and local governments. Prior to coming to MTA, Judy served as Director of Government and Community Services of Oakland Schools, where she advocated on behalf of 28 districts in Lansing and Washington, D.C. Judy has also served as Chief of Staff to the Senate Majority Leader and was later appointed by then Gov. John Engler to serve as Chairperson of the Michigan State Liquor Control Commission.

    Kyle Shumaker

    President

    Shumaker Technology Group

    Kyle’s formal tech education began at Lansing Eastern High School where he attended their Cisco Networking Academy program and earned his Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) credential. He also got his start in web development working on the high school and school district websites and taking on a few small freelance projects. He earned his degree in Computer Science and Engineering from Michigan State, founding Shumaker Technology Group (STG) in 2007 just before graduating. Currently Kyle and Shumaker Tech Group assist over 200 municipal clients in the State of Michigan with their website, document management, aerial drone photography and other technology needs.

    Many township clerks will recognize Kyle and his team at Shumaker Technology Group from the ridiculous track uniforms they wear while participation in the Michigan Association of Municipal Clerks MAMC 5k Race, where they like to prove that they go the extra mile to keep your website running. 

    Charamy Cleary

    Michigan Bureau of Elections

    Kristi Dougan

    Elections Analyst

    Michigan Bureau of Elections

    Kristi Dougan is an election analyst with extensive experience in multiple areas of election administration.  Kristi joined the Michigan Bureau of Elections in 2006. She plays a leading role in the Bureau’s clerk training and education programs, including development of clerk accreditation programs.  Kristi’s municipal experience is rooted in her service as the Village President of her hometown Sparta in western Michigan from 2014 to 2020.

    Riley Millard

    Michigan Bureau of Elections

    MTA retreats offer education tailored to your role in your township

    No one understands townships or your roles and responsibilities like the Michigan Townships Association. That’s why we’ve created our unique Professional Development Retreats offering more than 10 hours of intensive learning targeting the challenges (and opportunities!) you face while providing the information you need to succeed. Whether you've been in township government for 2 years or 22 years, you can’t afford to miss these intensive learning (and networking!) events designed specifically for your role as a township official. Sessions offered include:

    What Every Clerk Needs to Know About Personnel Management
    Don’t miss this review of the most effective (and easiest!) ways to keep track of your township’s employee information and to comply with record retention schedules, confidentiality and privacy laws. We’ll review the most common recordkeeping issues and best practices for personnel management to help keep your township in compliance. 

    Managing Adversity and Hostility
    We all encounter unreasonable people, whether it’s an unhappy resident or a board member with an opposing view. It’s easy to let those challenging individuals impact our attitude. Learn how to avoid personalizing others’ behavior (and comments!) and maintain self-control to avoid escalating the problem. Walk away with strategies for winning better rapport, cooperation and respect.

    Understanding Unemployment
    Every township is subject to unemployment reporting, but not all township employees are covered by unemployment. Review what type of employer your township is, who is covered by unemployment and reporting requirements for townships. Learn what to do when a claim is made, including how to protest and appeal a claim.

    Auditing Fundamentals for Federal Funding 
    Given the surge of funding from various federal sources in 2020-2021, your township may be subject to additional audit procedures. This session will help you get a handle on additional auditing procedures to help you understand, anticipate and prepare what your auditor needs.

    Your Role with the Open Meetings Act (OMA)
    Your township is subject to the Open Meetings Act every time the board meets—and before and after it meets. Get a review of OMA requirements that impact your role when it comes to scheduling meetings, notice, public comment and more. Walk away with tips on recording the minutes.

    FOIA: What You Need to Know Now
    With few exceptions, all township records should be treated as public records. But what about emails, personal communications, privacy, or board member communications? Cut through the confusion, learn what the FOIA requires and review best practices for handling public requests for records.

    Elections Update 
    Get an update on current election issues, insights into lessons learned, best practices and so much more! Bring your questions and find out what changes lie ahead.

    State and Local Relationships… and Your Role
    Do you know, on average, the number of bills introduced each legislative session that impact local authority? The percentage is higher than you might think. Often these bills limit local control—sometimes they even eliminate it! Learn what you can do to shape future laws and make a positive impact. You will gain an overview of the legislative process while also learning key principles of advocacy success—interactions with legislators and their staff and strategizing for both short- and long-term advocacy success.

    Why Websites Matter 
    Your township website isn’t just a great communication tool for your residents, it serves as your ŀ rst handshake with tourists and visitors. An up-to-date, user-friendly website promotes and informs your community 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Get ideas for streamlining your website so it keeps your residents in the know, facilitates township business and appeals to tourists without frustrating your online visitors.

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    Get an overview of the elections process for your entire board.

    What the Board Needs to Know About Elections

    Townships may vary dramatically in size and location, but all have elections in common. Every township runs elections. With all the controversy, mistrust and sweeping requirements still fresh in our minds, we look ahead to November’s general election with a primer on elections geared for your entire township board. From board responsibilities to resources, we’ll help you get a handle on the impact elections have on your township.

    **Premium Pass members: This webcast is already part of your subscription. To access, click MY WEBCASTS, then click the Premium Package link to view this webcast, or to access other webcasts included in your package.**

    Cindy Dodge

    MTA Member Information Liaison

    Michigan Townships Association

    MTA Member Information Liaison Cindy Dodge joined MTA in 2006 from Williamstown Township in Ingham County where she served as Clerk since 2005. She has been involved with the township since 2003 as assistant to the supervisor, planning commissioner, and assistant to the planning commission. She is currently a Michigan Certified Assessing Officer. Via phone, fax and e-mail, Cindy provides township officials and employees with information and resources regarding the day-to-day functions of township government. She is also the Association liaison for MTA county chapters, develops MIS Department resource materials, and presents workshop and Conference sessions as well as teaching live and recorded webinar courses.