Leaders gather to improve village

By Shelby Stewart
Staff Writer
Ortonville- Better sidewalks, drainage and communications between government and residents were just a few of the key issues suggested on March 29 during a joint meeting of village leaders.
The village council, planning commission, and the downtown development authority gathered at the Brandon Township Public Library to discuss how they want to improve the village and how they can all work together moving forward.
Various members of the organizations told each other and the community why they wanted to get involved, as well as what things they believe needs to be fixed or improved upon in the community, lead by Village Manager Bill Sprague.
“Just to make a difference, just to make it even better to live here,” said DDA member Allison Brauer.

Many attendees stated similar reasons of wanting to make their community better for newcomers and current residents alike.
“I do it because I fell in love with this community,” said Larry Hayden of the planning commission. “My concern here is that we’ve seen some conflict that seems to be going against that sense of community. I’m hoping that we can all come together as a community and get back on track to being that strong community we have been.”
“I’m on the council because Dan Eschmann showed up one day in my front yard and talked me into it,” said Village Council President Wayne Wills. “I don’t know where I would be had that not been the case. I’m looking forward to controlled progress.”
In a group exercise, the attendees, which spanned three tables, wrote lists of things that each table could agree on needed to be fixed in Ortonville in five minutes.
“All three of those are things that we can work on, as a team,” said Sprague.

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