Community Updates

Notice of Ordinance Adoption

The following ordinance was adopted at a regular meeting of the Fruitport Township Board on November 25, 2019:

 

ORDINANCE NO. 813

LAW ENFORCEMENT COST RECOVERY ORDINANCE

AN ORDINANCE TO AMEND THE FRUITPORT CHARTER TOWNSHIP CODE OF ORDINANCES BY ADDING CHAPTER 17, SPECIFICALLY  TO ALLOW, PURSUANT TO MICHIGAN PUBLIC ACT 33 OF 1951, AS AMENDED (MCL 41.801 ET. SEQ.) AND OTHER APPLICABLE PROVISIONS OF THE MICHIGAN STATUTES, THE TOWNSHIP TO RECOVER COSTS INCURRED BY THE TOWNSHIP IN CONNECTION WITH THE PROVISION OF CERTAIN POLICE SERVICES, AND TO PROVIDE FOR THE ENFORCEMENT OF THIS ORDINANCE AND CERTAIN ADMINISTRATIVE PROVISIONS.

THE CHARTER TOWNSHIP OF FRUITPORT, COUNTY OF MUSKEGON, AND STATE OF MICHIGAN ORDAINS AS FOLLOWS.

Section 1.  Code Amendment.  Chapter 17 of the Fruitport Charter Township Code of Ordinances is added to state as follows. 

CHAPTER 17

LAW ENFORCEMENT COST RECOVERY

 

Sec. 17-1.   Purpose. 

The township finds residents of, visitors to, and businesses in the township historically have needed, caused, or contributed to the need for certain police or law enforcement services, which needs have the potential to negatively affect the health, environment, and welfare of township residents and real property located within the township.  In addition, the township has found that it has incurred costs associated with the provision of these police or law enforcement services.  As a result of these determinations, the township has adopted this chapter to recover costs incurred by the township in connection with the provision of these police or law enforcement services to the fullest extent permitted by law.

Sec. 17-2.   Definitions. 

For the purpose of their use in this chapter, unless their context specifically indicates otherwise, the following words and terms are defined as indicated.  Any word or term not defined below shall be considered to be defined in accordance with its common or standard definition.

(a)                Assessable costs:  The costs incurred by the township in connection with, or to allow the township to respond to, any public safety event to which the township’s police department is called or dispatched, including but not limited to the actual labor and material costs to the township (including without limitation employee wages; worker’s compensation benefits; fringe benefits; administrative overhead; costs of equipment; costs of equipment operation, including depreciation; costs of materials; costs of transportation; costs of material disposal; costs of any contracted labor; and any and all other costs), whether or not such services are provided by the township or by a third party independent contractor on behalf of the township; service charges or interest; attorneys’ fees; and litigation costs (including but not limited to filing fees, transcript fees, expert fees, and witness fees).

(b)               Law enforcement assistance means any police or law enforcement services deemed appropriate by township personnel to respond to any event or incident to which the township may respond.

(c)                Excessive requests for law enforcement assistance:  any request for law enforcement assistance (e.g. police or law enforcement services) made for a particular location (e.g. any dwelling, commercial or industrial or service business, or any other entity with one or more street addresses in the township) if that location has requested law enforcement assistance, of any type, more than 25 times in a calendar year.

(d)               In connection with excessive requests for law enforcement assistance, responsible party means:  The individual, firm, corporation, association, partnership, commercial entity, consortium, joint venture, government entity, or any other legal entity that is responsible, in whole or in part, for the excessive requests for law enforcement assistance, including without limitation any owner, tenant, occupant, or party in control of all or a portion of the real property or structure to which law enforcement personnel are summoned pursuant to the excessive requests for law enforcement assistance and their heirs, estates, or successors.

(e)                Structure:  Anything constructed or erected which has a permanent location on the ground or is attached to something having such location.

Sec. 17-3.   Assessment of costs.

(a)                All assessable costs which are incurred by the township and associated with any excessive requests for law enforcement shall be jointly and severally assessed to any or all responsible parties.

(b)               Any assessable costs, including litigation expenses (including but not limited to filing fees, transcript fees, attorney fees, expert fees and witness fees), which become known to the township following the transmittal of a statement to the responsible party pursuant to this chapter shall be billed in the same manner on a subsequent statement to the responsible party.

(c)                The township treasurer or the treasurer’s designee shall certify to the township supervisor the total assessable costs incurred by the township pursuant to subsection (a) above. 

(d)               The township supervisor shall direct the township clerk to send a statement of costs assessed pursuant to this chapter to all responsible parties so assessed.  Such statement shall be dated and sent by first class United States mail, postage prepaid, to the last known address of each responsible party.  The township clerk may send statements to all responsible parties so assessed on a quarterly basis.

(e)                Cost recovery fee schedule: The township public safety director or a designee shall annually adopt a schedule of the rates/costs incurred in responding to incidents requiring law enforcement assistance.  It shall be presumed that the costs listed in this schedule are the true costs incurred by the township in responding to an event which involved law enforcement assistance. This schedule shall be available to the public from the township clerk.

Sec. 17-4.   Notice and right to appear provisions. 

Any responsible party who receives a statement of costs assessed pursuant to this chapter shall be given the opportunity to appear before the township board to request a modification of the assessed costs.  Any responsible party who desires to appear before the township board shall file a written request to appear with the township clerk within 14 calendar days of the date of the statement of assessed costs.  The responsible party will be placed on the agenda of the next regularly scheduled or special township board meeting, which meeting is at least 14 calendar days after the date on which the responsible party files with the township clerk a request to appear.  Any filed request to appear shall specifically identify and explain all reasons why the responsible party believes the costs assessed pursuant to this chapter should be modified.  Any reason, basis, or argument for a modification of the assessed costs not set forth in the written request to appear shall be deemed waived by the responsible party.  Failure to file a written request to appear within 14 calendar days of the date of the statement of assessed costs shall constitute a waiver of the responsible party’s right to appear before the township board, and shall further constitute the responsible party’s agreement to pay the assessed costs.

Sec. 17-5.   Failure to pay; procedure to recover. 

The township may pursue any responsible party under either or both subparagraph (a) or subparagraph (b) below, without limitation as allowed by law.

(a)                All costs assessed pursuant to this chapter shall be paid within 30 calendar days of the date of the statement.  Any responsible party who fails to pay the costs assessed pursuant to this chapter within 30 calendar days of the date of the statement therefore shall be considered in default.  In the case of default, the township board may authorize the township attorney to commence a civil action to recover the costs, plus a late payment penalty of one percent per month or part of a month during which the costs remains unpaid, together with the township’s attorneys’ fees and any other costs allowed by law.

(b)               In cases where services have been rendered to a property or property owner, the charges shall constitute a lien on that property, including both real and personal property if allowed by law.  If not paid within 30 days after the same is due, the township treasurer shall, prior to November 1 of each year, certify to the township assessor the facts of such delinquency.  The township assessor shall then enter the delinquent amount on the next general tax roll as a charge against the property, and the lien thereupon shall be enforced in the same manner as provided by and allowed by law for delinquent and unpaid taxes.

Sec. 17-6.   No limitation of liability.

The recovery of assessable costs pursuant to this chapter does not limit the liability of a responsible party under applicable local, state, federal, or any other applicable law, rule, or regulation. The township shall be entitled to pursue any other remedy or may institute any appropriate action or proceeding in a court of competent jurisdiction as permitted by law to collect assessable costs from a responsible party.

Sec. 17-7.    Non-exclusive charge.

The foregoing rates, fees, and charges shall not be exclusive of the charges that may be made by the township for the costs and expenses of maintaining its police department, but shall only be supplemental. Monies may additionally be collected by the township through general taxation after a vote of the electorate approving the same or by a special assessment established under pertinent Michigan statutes. General fund appropriations may also be made to cover additional costs and expenses.

Section 2.  Effective Date.  This Ordinance was approved and adopted by the Township Board of Fruitport Charter Township on November 25, 2019, after introduction and first reading on October 28, 2019, and after publication and posting following such first reading as required by Michigan Act 359 of 1947, as amended.  This Ordinance shall be effective January 1, 2020.