My name is Rick Murphy, and as President of the Friends of Grass Lake Township, I’d like to give you a little insight into how we evolved from three neighbors concerned about a Mining Operation being proposed for Norvell Road, to a Grass Roots Movement that ended up 10 days later with nearly 100 residents flooding the Grass Lake Township Planning Commission Board Meeting in May, 2017 for a hearing on the proposal. The project was tabled at this meeting because L & L’s proposal was incomplete.
This began a movement that, through the community banding together in a common cause brought over 100 residents to the September 2017 Grass Lake Township Planning Commission Meeting. The project was again tabled at this meeting.
Because of the efforts of our nearly 150 members, we ended up with almost 300 residents attending the October 12, 2017 Planning Commission’s Public Hearing at the High School. At the 5-hour meeting, residents spoke about the importance of protecting our way of life. All but 3 speakers opposed the Mining Operation. Hundreds of pages of resident’s letters, plus legal and expert testimony addressing the negative economic, environmental, safety, and lifestyle impacts of the Mine were presented. Still the Planning Commission went against their own Zoning Master Plan and voted 4-2 to approve the mine (with conditions).
Because Grass Lake Township’s bylaws provide no path to appeal a special land use permit, the Friends of Grass Lake Township filed an appeal with the Jackson County Circuit Court.
Unfortunately, a special use permit can be issued for a large industrial Mining Operation on property zoned R-1 Residential. The Planning Commission can approve this without a vote by the elected officials of Grass Lake Township. This made us realize it was time for action, not only in opposition to the mining operation, but also for changes in the way Grass Lake Charter Township operates.
The “Claim of Appeal” has been filed, and it will take time for the case to work its way through the judicial system. In the meantime, we are devoting our time, energy and resources to helping our community in other ways.
We took part in the Angel Tree Adopt-a-Family Christmas Program by adopting a family of 7, and donated over 400 pounds of food to the local pantries. We have joined the Grass Lake Chamber of Commerce, and competed in Grass Lake’s Winterfest Chili Cook-off.
Our organization continues to work to keep Grass Lake Township Safe, Beautiful and a Great Place to Call Home. We attend ALL Grass Lake Township Board Meetings and Planning Commission Meetings, and will be using our website as a resource to educate and inform the residents about what is going on in the Township.
We invite you to “Like” our acebook page, (Friends of Grass Lake Township), email us at , or stop by our membership meetings on the first and third Sundays of each month at the Dale Fisher Galleries, 1916 Norvell Road at 3:00 PM.
We also invite you to attend the monthly meetings of the Grass Lake Township Board and the Planning Commission.
Please... Get involved and join us to let our elected officials realize we love the way Grass Lake is now and intend to do everything in our power to keep our way of life.
We would like all Residents of Grass Lake Township to know that this Court Case will set a precedent, and if this Mine is actually given final approval, this type of an industrial mining operation, along with the noise, dirt, pollution, and danger to our wells and environment can be approved on ANY 10 acre or larger parcel in Grass Lake Township!!!!!!! And you WON’T be able to stop it, it will be too late!!
How close are you to ANY 10 acre parcel in Grass Lake Township?? We are fighting your fight!
Thank You and Welcome Aboard!!
Rick Murphy President, Friends of Grass Lake Township