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Posted: 03/05/14

A DROP IN THE BUDGET. Above, tubing and a bucket are preventing water from leaking onto the Bruce-Romeo Fire Department's dispatch equipment. Below, large icicles form on the Township Hall's roof. Officials are proposing increases to building maintenance to repair the roof.

(Observer photos by Chris Gray)

Increases budgeted for
Bruce Town Hall repairs

Observer Staff Writer
      What looks like a still for a moonshine operation is actually saving the dispatch equipment for the Bruce-Romeo Fire Department from water damage.
       A clear hose leading from the ceiling is leading water into a bucket, serving as a temporary fix to roofing problems township officials are hoping to resolve in the coming year.
       "It's been a bad year for snow, but we're going to have this every year until it's fixed right," said Fire Chief Ken Staelgraeve.
       Roof repairs became a focal point during a budget workshop held by the Board of Trustees on Feb. 19, where a suggestion to raise building maintenance funds to $15,000 will stop a leaky roof.
       Ice and snow build-up from a record-breaking winter has wreaked havoc on an already-aging roof. Supervisor Richard Cory said he would gather information from roofing contractors to get an idea of what repairs are needed and what they'll cost.
       "Three offices in the front are leaking bad, and we had every possible container with water dripping into them," Cory said on Feb. 25. "We're going to have to do something."
       Treasurer Deborah Obrecht has one of the offices enduring the leaky roof, using four trash bins at one point to collect water falling from the ceiling.
       "I seriously don't know if it's worth biting the bullet and considering something as drastic as a metal roof," she said.
       She added the roof has had three sets of shingles since she took office, and that the underside of the roof in the attic has icicles hanging from it.
       Trustee Mark Falker said when inspecting the attic, he could see the light from the offices below, so he suggested the township put in some insulation as well.
       "You've got to get the heat that does get up in the attic . . . out of there or it's going to melt the snow on the roof on the outside," he said.
       Building maintenance was amended to $3,000 for the current budget year, and was expected to increase to $6,000 this year. The roof repairs will add $9,000 to the total.
       Clerk Susan Brockmann said the increase will result in a shortfall, so funds will likely come out of the improvement revolving line item to patch the budget hole. The proposed budget has $50,000 in improvement revolving.
       Staelgraeve said he expects the fire department would contribute to the repairs for its portion of the building.
       "The longer we let it go, the bigger the problem it gets," he said.
       In a separate line item, the township is budgeting $5,000 for roof repairs to its building on Van Dyke that houses the Macomb Conservation District.
       The repairs are among the new numbers for the proposed $1 million budget for the 2014-15 fiscal year. The proposed budget includes revenue increases from state sources, building permits and property taxes, but also includes payments for a $569,620 loan to pave 34 Mile Road and $0.50 an-hour increases to three part-time employees.
       The Board of Trustees must approve the new budget by March 31.

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Retrieved 7/31/2015 at 11:22:33 AM.
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