If successful, Farmers Market lot proposed site


IMLAY CITY — At last week’s Imlay City city commission meeting, Downtown Development Authority Executive Director Christine Malzahn presented a resolution for recommended approval by the commission for a Community Center Pavilion.

In making her presentation, Malzahn told the commission she was up against a short window for a deadline date and needed to act swiftly. The 74-page document that was submitted last week detailed the proposed project, noting the structure would be 4,000 square feet and located at the corner of Third St and Main St, where the Imlay City Farmers Market currently meets.

Although a cost estimate was not shared at the meeting, in her written application for the grant, Malzahn pointed out, “The proposed Community Center Pavilion project for Imlay City will serve as a hub in our traditional downtown area. As the center of community life, it will provide various services and resources the community as a whole will benefit from, including opportunities for active living and recreation in a safe, inclusive environment.”

Imlay City Manager Craig Horton

Malzahn continued reading her application and said, “It is in this center that we will encourage our residents to be active and to interact with other residents thereby creating a common ground area focused on inclusivity while celebrating our diversity and heritage.

The grant amounts for those that are successful will vary from $150,00 up to $2,500,000, according to the grant organizers.

The commission passed a resolution “without financial commitment”, supporting the grant application and the project.

In other commission news, board members heard an update on a potential 425 agreement involving land currently owned by Imlay Township. City Manager Craig Horton said it appeared everything was moving forward and a deal could be completed soon. The township has requested a few minor changes to the agreement and is expected to act on the issue at their next meeting on September 20.

If the land swap is approved, Imlay City officials intend to make the new parcel a location for an industrial park. Manager Horton says the current industrial park, east of Cedar St., is full.

City officials are gathering information to have a Public Safety Department question on the ballot next spring. City commission members have agreed, if the possible millage is approved, to move forward with the process of developing the new department that would encompass the police and fire departments.

The three-mill public safety tax would help fund the two departments and other associated costs for public safety.

Before adjourning the meeting, commission members discussed the possibility of recreational marijuana coming to Imlay City and the fact that they want to stay in front of the issue.

Unlike when medical marijuana came to Imlay City following a close vote at the polls by city residents, commission members expressed no desire to be forced into a corner and told how medical marijuana was going to be done in the city, once a ballot proposal passed.

Mayor Joi Kempf said she felt the commission should start the process now, “so we can still have some say in how it is dealt with here. We had no say with the medical marijuana. They told us how it was going to be done and what we had to do.”

“This is not a negotiation,” Mayor Pro-Tem Ted Sadler pointed out. “We still have some say here. We need to do what is best for the residents of Imlay City. The commission agreed to further discuss the issue at an upcoming meeting.