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Week of 12.5.16

Welcome to the home of Social Lights. New online reports with photos appear each week on the website and in the monthly print editions for the Birmingham-Bloomfield area and the Rochester-Rochester Hills area at the start of each month. If you want e-mail notification of when new Social Lights columns are posted to this site each Monday, sign up in the Newsletter Sign Up box at the lower right side of this home page.

Alzheimer’s Chocolate Jubilee

The Masquerade Ball invitation instructed “wear a mask for one night to help unmask Alzheimer’s forever,” and many of the 550 guests ($200 & up ticket) at the MGM Grand did just that. During the social hour they socialized and nearly 200 paid $50 for a Sweet Chances bag. (In the valet line one gentleman happily showed off the Bulova watch that was in his bag.) The dinner program had highlights. University student Tyler Leightner spoke about the devastation caused by his mother’s early onset-Alzheimer’s at age 44. Its genetic nature has inspired his active involvement in fundraising and research for the Alzheimer’s Association and determination to pursue a career in the field. Quicken Loans CEO Bill Emerson proved he could do okay as an auctioneer if need be as he persuaded guests to pay $75,000 for six packages in the short live auction.
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This weeks social light photos…

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Steakhouse adjustments

Fresh blood has graced the kitchen at Eddie Merlot’s , an upscale steakhouse in Bloomfield Township at 37000 Woodward Avenue. Executive chef Justin Bates joined the staff after two decades in the industry. Most recently he served as executive chef for Bravo Brio Restaurant Group , where he spent years moving up the ranks. "We’re a national company, so (Bates is) not bringing any changes ...more»

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oakland confidential

December 2016

Numbers count: Now that we’ve all recovered from our collective national election hangover, we’re examining the vote, looking at who voted and where the turnout was. While only 13 percent of registered voters in the city of Detroit turned out to vote on November 8, locally, voter participation was much stronger, with 79 percent of registered voters in Bloomfield Township, 76 percent ...more»

Old Woodward parking pattern maintained

An issue many residents may not have been aware of was discussed, and discarded, on Monday, November 21, by Birmingham city commissioners who approved adding head-in parking – the style the city currently has – to Old Woodward when it is completely reconstructed from Willits to Brown next spring....more>

Township adopts public comment policy

After seeing public comments on some agenda items degrade into what Bloomfield Township Supervisor Leo Savoie categorized as "public debate" at many recent board of trustee meetings, trustees voted on Monday, November 28, to change public comment to the beginning of trustee meetings....more>

Birmingham receives strong audit report

Beth Bialy and Timothy St. Andrew with Plante Moran presented an audit report to Birmingham city commissioners at their meeting on Monday, November 21, noting the city continues to maintain its AAA bond rating and is in strong financial shape....more>

Birmingham Winter Markt in Shain Park

Birmingham's popular Winter Markt event is celebrating its seventh year by returning to Shain Park December 2-4, with ice sculptures, holiday gift items and live entertainment....more>

2017 safety path plan moves forward

By a unanimous vote, the Bloomfield Township Board of Trustees approved the plan and authorized the design for safety paths for 2017 at their meeting on Monday, November 28....more>

Water, sewer rate hikes on the horizon

Water and sewer customers in Rochester can anticipate another steep increase in their water and sewer rates in 2017, as the city struggles to fund about $40 million in maintenance and upgrade work in the city over the next 20 years....more>

Historic district panel members approved

Rochester City Council members on Monday, November 28, approved four new members to the city's historic district commission, as well as four properties to the list of historic districts in the city....more>

Rochester water tower to bring in WiFi

Rochester City Council on Monday, November 28, directed city staff to draft a final agreement between the city and Solvaris Net LLC to lease the company space for WiFi antenna on the city's water tower....more>

Rochester mulls revisions to events policy

Potential changes to the city's special event ordinance were discussed by Rochester council members on Monday, November 28, but council stopped short of approving any revisions to the permitting policy....more>

Christmas Parade in Rochester Sunday

The annual Rochester Hometown Christmas Parade will march down Main Street this Sunday, December 4, from 2 to 4 p.m....more>

Winter coats stolen from Boyne Country

Employees at Boyne Country Sports in Bloomfield Township tried to stop two people who were stealing winter coats from the store on Wednesday, November 23, but were unable to prevent them from taking off....more>

Charges made on township resident's card

Unauthorized charges were made on a credit card of a Bloomfield Township resident who informed police that he was still in possession of his card....more>

Vandals shoot out car windows

Rochester police are investigating a series of broken vehicle windows that occurred sometime overnight from Monday, November 14, to Tuesday, November 15, in the area near Albertson and N. Pine....more>

Intoxicated driver passes out in traffic

A 27-year-old Rochester Hills man on the morning of Saturday, November 26, was removed from his vehicle after authorities said he passed out in traffic near E. Auburn Road and Culbertson Avenue....more>

Police seek tips in break-in

Rochester police are asking for assistance from the public in identifying a person of interest wanted in connection with a theft from a vehicle in the area of Wyngate, Cloverdale and Chase streets....more>

Shoplifter sought in liquor thefts

Oakland County sheriff's investigators looking into a series of liquor thefts from a Rochester Hills Meijer store in November believe a Pontiac man is responsible for stealing more than $800 in merchandise from the business....more>
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Rise and fall of a newspaper

Most people might not consider being hospitalized with an unexpected heart condition a stroke of good luck, but Frank Shepherd, former owner of 21st Century Newspapers and The Oakland Press, said a three-day stint at a cardiac unit near the end of 2003 was just that....more>
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Battle for trash hauling

What was once a small snow plowing company, with only the city of Hamtramck as a major customer, is now the dominant waste hauler in southeastern Michigan, with contracts for hauling trash and recycling for 55 municipalities, including 20 out of 62 communities in Oakland County. This growth by Rizzo Environmental Services has come at the expense of other waste haulers, and is now the subject of a public corruption probe by the FBI in Macomb County. While there currently is no known evidence of corruption by Rizzo in Oakland County, there has been a battle for supremacy and dominance in the county, and if numbers tell the story, that story says that Rizzo is currently the reigning king of trash hauling, a multi-million, if not billion dollar, industry....more>
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Tax audits for homesteads

Owning a home provides many benefits, from the pride in having a place of your own, to being able to take a deduction on your annual tax return. One responsibility of home ownership is paying property taxes to your municipality, which includes funds to the state which come back to local school districts as per-pupil funding. When the home is your primary residence, homeowners pay the municipality's annual millage rate. However, if the home is a second, or other non-primary residence, the non-principal residence tax can run up to 18 mills, depending on the approved millage for the district. ...more>
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