Week of 3.27.17

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.

Erin Go Bra(gh)

Kathy Broock Ballard’s annual St. Patrick’s Day charity event is a play on words – the Gaelic for “Ireland forever.” But her girlfriends, 70 came this year, know that the new underwear they bring will be cherished by the women-in-need clients of Grace Centers of Hope and CARE House of Oakland County. The happy hour party at the Village Club is emerald accented (see photo gallery) and noted for Ballard’s generous hospitality. The venue is special to the hostess because ”...my grandmother was one of the founders of this club.” The news maker at the party was Cheryl Hall-Lindsay. She arrived with a foot cast to go with her arm cast. Both injuries were sustained during her fitness run through the neighborhood, but the foot cast was brand new. “This morning I was hit by a car...and the driver ran over my foot,” she explained. Keeping fit can be dangerous.
This weeks social light photos…


oakland confidential

April 2017

BIGOTRY 101: Who could have imagined that in 2017 anti-semitism would once again be rearing its ugly head. Sadly, some local Republicans confirm the toxic malady hit the state’s Republican convention in February, when party administrative vice-chair David Wolkinson of Birmingham ran for re-election to the party position. "There were a bunch of people who also wanted to be vice-chair who ...more»
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Proposed township subdivision shot down

By Lisa Brody
News Editor
01/27/2017 - A preliminary plat proposal to create five single family residential lots into a cul-de-sac subdivision from vacant property that front Franklin Road south of Hickory Grove Road, just north of Bloomfield Hills Schools' E.L Johnson Nature Center, was unanimously denied by the Bloomfield Township Board of Trustees on Monday, January 23.

The land, located at 3355 Franklin Road, had previously been denied twice by the township, in 2002 and 2005, for lot split requests, by a previous land owner, who had requested the property be split into two and three lots. At the time, the township board denied the requests because they failed to comply with the township's lot split ordinance. In both instances, the decisions were appealed to circuit court, which found in favor of Bloomfield Township based on the lot split ordinance regulations.

Patti Voelker, township planning, ordinance and design director, explained to the board that a new owner, Terry Nosan of NVTN Acquisitions, LLC, made an application to commence with the state's platting process as prescribed by the Michigan Land Development Act in order to replat a western part of lot 6 of the property for the proposed five residential lots into a cul-de-sac, to be called Franklin Club Court subdivision, with each lot having 24,000 to 26,000 square feet.

She said that while traffic, engineering, landscape, and other consultants did not find any negative impact upon the area, and the township's design and review board forwarded the proposal to the planning board, who reviewed it in September, "The planning board denied it due to environmental and drainage concerns relative to wetlands."

Nosan explained that the plat proposal "has not been done in the township for 20 years. This used to be the only way to subdivide land in the state." He explained he was not requesting any rezoning, unlike a site condo development.

"Frankly, if this project required rezoning, we wouldn't have taken it on. Neither is it a request for a lot split. Our development by definition is low density," he said.

He also explained that there were limitations to the powers of the township board, and that platting a subdivision is a state act. "Under the Michigan Land Development Act, there is no local approving authority. However, Bloomfield Township has numerous ordinances that go beyond the state act."

He noted that the plat was filed with the township clerk in March 2016, with money deposited to take care of necessary reviews, including planning and engineering; environmental, engineering, sewer and water reports came back excellent in May; and Michigan Department of Environmental Quality determination on the site stated, "the proposed development will not disturb the wetlands.

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