Winter taxes Are now overdue. Interest and penalty charges have accrued. Please call the Treasurer, Lynn Smolenyak 231-547-5616 for the current amount due. For your convenience, you can deliver property tax payments into the secure drop box at the Norwood Township Hall. Property taxes cannot be accepted by the local Treasurer after March 1, 2021.
The new Norwood Township Hall at 00640 Lake Shore Drive is currently under construction. The building package has been delivered and crews are at work.
Norwood Road is to be paved in the Spring of 2021 by the County using County Road Millage money. Other Road news: During the repaving of US-31 MDOT will include about 150 ft of Witmere and Heise roads and 105 ft on Norwood Road.
EMS Services News:
The Township Board intends to finalize an agreement with Torch Lake Township (TLT) to provide Advanced Life Support EMS services to Norwood Township. Costs of this service from the City of Charlevoix have become unpredictable and prohibitive. We are confident of excellent service to all from Torch Lake. The Board is hopeful the new agreement will commence January 1, 2021. There will be a public hearing Monday December 21 during the normal Township Board meeting
Background: The City of Charlevoix has been passing on to participating Townships budget overruns and expenses without adequate communication and without timely billing. Some Townships, including Norwood, feel this practice and the expense is unsustainable. In addition Norwood has been supplementing costs for runs and services that are not directly attributable to Norwood residents. Also, the City of Charlevoix intends to get out of the EMS business and establish an Authority based service.Norwood Township currently collects 1 mill for fire and EMS protection for our residents. Fire protection is supplied by Charlevoix Township and Banks Township. EMS to date has been supplied by the City of Charlevoix. If Norwood were to remain with the City of Charlevoix/the new Authority, it is expected we would have to levy an additional mill just for EMS services.
Details: Torch Lake Township elevated their level of Ambulance service to Advance Life Support this past March making an agreement with Torch Lake Township an option. Torch Lake has 2 certified units, Licensed, and Certified EMT’s and Paramedics available 24/7. Licenses and Certifications were renewed in October by the State of Michigan.
As part of contracting with Torch Lake Township, we will have the professional management and backup of the Township Ambulance Authority (TAA) of Antrim County. Through TAA, we’ll have the support of an additional 5 units and personnel from Central Lake, Bellaire, and others. In the unlikely event that services are required in competing areas at once, the existing ALS mutual aid agreements are available through the normal 911 dispatch system. In addition, normal EMS operating procedure of “mutual aid” allows for the support of the Fire Departments with EMS services.
Professional Management and billing services will be provided by TLT directly or under arrangement (currently by TAA) and TLT shall be solely entitled to bill and collect for services. The contract stipulates that fees and charges shall be uniform for all patients, regardless of the patient’s domicile in Norwood Township.
Our contract with Torch Lake specifies a set amount for services based on the historical amount of runs for our township. We are only contracting for Advanced Life Support Ambulance services to Norwood. There will be no surprises – there are no factors for equipment, uncollected billings, etc. We will still be able to support our Fire protection and Ambulance services with the current 1 mill EMS tax.
Clearly response times will differ depending on your location within the Township – just as they have with the service coming out of the City of Charlevoix. In the summer months, the response times coming from the South ought to be better since there will be less congestion.
The contract is intended to be mutually beneficial and to that end, is flexible should either party need to withdraw, or review. However, we have stipulated a 4 year primary term that may be renewed up to 4 times. The contract also stipulates a level of reporting that we have never had from the City of Charlevoix.
The Torch Lake Officials have been very professional and willing to work with us. They are as committed as we are to provide the best of services to our Township residents. The Norwood Township Board strongly feels that this is the best way for us to move forward.
See these for updated information:
January Board Minutes
February Draft Board Minutes