E-Newsletter - Hills Highlights November 22, 2016

Commission Appoints Interim City Manager
With assistance from the Michigan Municipal League, the City Commission has initiated the process in selecting the next City Manager. In the interim, Director of Public Safety David Hendrickson is in place to lead the administrative team.  
A Note from the Interim City Manager
Hello, my name is David Hendrickson I am your Director of Public Safety.   I have also recently been given the honor of serving as the Interim City Manager for possibly the next several months. My goal is to be responsive to the needs of our community while serving in this position. I look forward to helping our residents in any way I can. To contact me please use my email dhendrickson@bloomfieldhillspolice.com or call me at (248) 530-1404.

WE WANT YOU! Are you a resident Interested in serving the City?
The City Commission is advised by a number of public Board and Commissions, whose members are appointed by the City Commission. The City of Bloomfield Hills is looking for candidates for possible open positions on the Zoning Board of Appeals and the Board of Review. No experience is necessary, just a desire to maintain the unique character of the city. 
Those interested in serving in a voluntary capacity on a board or commission shall submit an application to the City Clerk.  Applications will appear on the public agenda at a future city commission meeting, at which time the commission will discuss recommendations and may vote on appointments.  Applications are kept on file in the City Clerk’s office and considered for appointment by the City Commission when there is a vacancy. 
Contact City Clerk Amy Burton at (248) 530-1403 or aburton@bloomfieldhillsmi.net or visit the city’s website at www.bloomfieldhillsmi.net to learn more about the duties of the advisory board members and to complete the Boards and Commissions Appointment Application.  Please submit applications by December 5, 2016, we encourage you to get involved in our community!

City Hall Holiday Hours

City Hall will be observing the upcoming holidays as follows: 

  • November 24 – 25, 2016 – Closed for Thanksgiving holiday
  • December 23 – 26, 2016 – Closed for Christmas holiday
  • December 30 – January 2, 2017 – Closed for New Year’s holiday
Property Taxes
Please look for your 2016 winter tax bill to arrive around December 1st.  If you don’t receive your tax bill please call the treasury office at 248-644-1520 to request another copy.  Don’t forget to look on the back of the tax bill for important information, including payment options.  As always, we happy to answer any questions property owners have by calling our office.  Finally, for your convenience we have a drop box located on the left-side of the building at the entrance to the City Hall.
Preventing Sewer Backups
Fats, Oils and Grease (FOG) in sanitary sewer pipes create numerous problems in a community’s sewer system.  FOG enters sewer pipes through restaurant businesses, residential developments, and commercial properties.  Once in the sewer, FOG sticks to the pipe and thickens. Over time, FOG can build up resulting in reduced capacity of a pipe and eventually blocking the entire pipe.  Blockages in sewer pipes send sewage backward and overflowing out of manholes into streets, rivers, or up floor drains in homes.
Fats, oils, and grease are by-products of cooking found in food scraps, meat fats, lard, cooking oil, butter, margarine, or shortening. Chemicals from industrial complexes also produce FOG waste.  Follow these tips to protect our environment and keep drains and sewers clear of FOG:
  • Pour or scrape greasy or oily food waste into a container or jar
  • Allow grease to cool or freeze in the container before throwing it in the trash
  • Do not use hot water to rinse grease off cookware, utensils, or dishes. Wipe it off with a paper towel or dish rag instead
  • Keep drains clean by pouring ½ cup baking soda down the drain, followed by ½ cup vinegar. Wait 10 to 15 minutes and then rinse with hot water
For more information on Fats, Oils, and Grease (FOG), please visit the Clean Water Services’ website at www.cleanwaterservices.org.
Winter Salt Practices for Water Quality Improvement
With the upcoming winter season, preparation for snow and ice removal becomes critical as anticipated winter storms create mounds of snow to shovel and layers of ice to melt from our sidewalks and driveways.  We often make snow and ice removal easier by applying deicers like salt. However, salt degrades water quality by increasing chloride content. Besides sodium chloride, many deicers also contain chemicals like cyanide.  When ice melts, the salts and chemicals dissolve and flow into street drains that lead directly to the rivers, lakes, and streams, endangering aquatic life.  Follow these simple tips below to help reduce the detrimental water quality impacts deicers have on the environment:

Try an alternative:
  • Calcium magnesium acetate (CMA) was developed as a deicing alternative because it has fewer adverse environmental impacts than salt and does not cause corrosion.  Although CMA is more expensive than rock salt, it is recommended for environmentally sensitive areas.
  • GeoMelt 55, a sugar beet juice product, which makes salt more effective at melting ice and snow; lowers the amount of salt needed; and is more environmentally-safe and less corrosive than traditional products. 
Reduce your salt use.  By limiting the amount of salt we use on sidewalks and driveways, we can reduce the amount of polluted storm water washing into our waterways.

Limit access.  Limit access to your home to one entrance.  For every doorway that is not used, there will be less salt running into the catch basin in your street. 

Keep in mind that although there are alternative deicers, this does not mean that we can utilize more of the alternatives because they are slightly better than salt.  The best solution in minimizing water quality impacts is to limit your overall use of deicing materials.

For more information, visit the State of Michigan website at www.michigan.gov or the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality at www.michigan.gov/deq.

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