Meanwhile, up the road in Howell …

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I think I can speak for all local elected officials when I say that when we read the paper about the political shenanigans occurring somewhere else, we heave a sigh of relief. “Must be (insert local municipality here)’s turn! Hope it doesn’t spread!”

It’s small of us, I know.

Well, Howell is having a turn now. It’s not often mayors have the perfect opportunity to publicly tell our boards “Knock it off. We look like idiots.” But Mayor Phil Campbell saw the opening, and took it, and more power to him. Somebody up there needs to have some perspective, and Phil is clearly the man.

I need to state that I don’t know any of the Howell City Council members. But sitting down South here in Pinckney, I read the so-called moral outrage of Councilman Doug Heins and Mayor Pro Tem Alan Schlittler over “special treatment” for driveways and $10 tickets, and wonder why they don’t have better things to do with their time (I think that a lot, but usually regarding our state elected officials in Lansing).

I know when we do a street project in Pinckney that involves tearing out and replacing driveway approaches, we replace what the homeowner had. In other words, if you had concrete, we replace it with concrete; asphalt gets replaced with asphalt. Want to upgrade? We allow that too, but you pay the difference. We even had a streetscape project on Main Street where we – gasp! – replaced a few asphalt approaches with concrete at no extra charge so our street looked nicer! None of them were owned by Council members! Oh, the horror!

So, given that we play fast and loose with driveways here in Pinckney, I guess it’s no surprise that I’m reading about all the hoopla over Mr. Manor’s driveway approach and I’m thinking “Huh?” If the paper is correct (and they are, sometimes!), it sounds like Manor’s driveway approach was originally concrete and was replaced with concrete.

No moral outrage necessary. Certainly this does not merit multiple press releases.

And then there is the ticket thing. Four $10 tickets, and only one of them to Mr. Manor. All voided by Chief Basar, who has been telling anyone who will listen – and that is apparently no one – that the tickets were issued erroneously.

I know I’m looking at this from 12 miles away, but I’m just not seeing any actual preferential treatment here.

What I am seeing is a Council member or two who not only lack logic, but also important political battle skills. Guys, if you’re going to go after a fellow Council member, you really need to have more ammunition than a $10 parking ticket voided in a batch with three others. And if your Chief is voiding tickets, this is the opposite of a “police state.”  Just sayin’.

And Mayor Phil – good luck to you, sir!



About Rebecca Foster 70 Articles
Rebecca Foster writes about food, politics, books and whatever has irritated her on any particular day, on her website Usual and Ordinary ( She is an occasional contributor to The Livingston Post and has remained active in local politics and the community after serving as Pinckney Village President from 2004-2012. She lives in Pinckney with her husband, two sons, and three cats - and a good sense of humor.

1 Comment

  1. Woo Hoo! As a Howell resident I’d like to thank Rebecca for her intelligent comments regarding the 3 Ring Circus taking place at our City Council meetings. I can’t wait to hear what she has to say about the Heins and Schlitler Traffic Circle fiasco. A potential waste of some serious tax payer money.

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