AJ's Letter Ann Johnson Gerry Johnson


Eagle Harbor Web

An unofficial source of Eagle Harbor, Michigan news, views and information.

Guess What's Hanging On Your Door!!

Ann Johnson At Work                                                                                 Gerry Johnson Building Fitzgerald

Ann and Gerry's Letter

Ann and Gerry Johnson are Eagle Harbor veterans and astute observers of the local scene. Luckily for us, they are also a wonderful writers. Their quarterly "letter to taxpayers" is a Harbor institution, eagerly anticipated and read by many Township property owners, especially those who are yet to make Eagle Harbor their permanent home. A big "Thank you" to Ann and Gerry for contributing their letter to George's Eagle Harbor Web.


Dear Friends:

Guess What's Hanging On Your Door!! Yes, it is your census form. No matter where you are, take comfort knowing that the Government has not forgotten you up here. All forms were hand-delivered in Eagle Harbor since there are no street addresses. Makes no difference if all the shutters are up and the snow hasn't completely melted out of the drive-the forms are waiting for you to come back and declare your residence. Don't worry that you won't be counted-if you live, vote, homestead or register your car here-complete the form and mail it when you return, or have a nice visit with an enumerator in June. Any form that you receive, wherever else you may be on April 1st can be marked with a big fat "0" in the space asking for total number of residents in that house.

By the time you receive this letter the new Fire Truck should be nestled snug in the fire hall. Chief Radigan, and volunteers Bruce Olson, Mike Gibb and Ed Stoneman will be driving to Wisconsin (Monday the 20th of March) to present the $198,000 check and claim the truck for Eagle Harbor Township. This was made possible by the signing of the loan papers for $160,000 and receiving the $40,000 grant from the US Department of Agriculture Rural Development Agency last Tuesday, March 7th. It was an auspicious occasion with members of the Township Board, USDA official, representatives from US Representative Stupak's and Senator Carl Levin's offices, members of the VFD, and the media present. We have pictures of a lot of smiling faces (and some leftover cookies).

Monday this week was a busy day. The Board of Review convened to hear protests on property assessments at 9:00 AM. The three members, Bruce Olson, Bob Masnado and Dick Lantz, and Supervisor Jim Boggio, who serves as secretary of the Board, were bored!! Although several people came by to pay solid waste bills and make inquiries about other matters, NO ONE PROTESTED. The members of the Board had gone to school to learn all about handling problems and irate taxpayers for naught. Ivan Fisher's dog, Heather, and George Hite's Abby-the-Wonder-Dog were the most faithful visitors, enjoying pats and treats. Tuesday's BOR session was pretty much the same.

Later on Monday a public hearing on the coming year's budget was held at 6:00 PM. Incorporated in the budget were provisions for increased salaries for the elected officials. Trustees will receive $100 per month and $30 for special meetings. The new rate of $600 per month for the Supervisor, Clerk and Treasurer was approved at the regular board meeting that followed the hearing. A topic of interest at the meeting was the proposed ski hill at Mt. Bohemia near Lac LaBelle. The County Zoning Board will be considering a change in land-use designation for the area to accommodate the ski resort. Bob Crampton, our representative to the Zoning Board asked for direction from the Board and audience. The consensus after discussion was that there was not enough information about the company behind the project, or about their plans for the area to give them carte blanche by changing the zoning without severe restrictions at this time. There will be a hearing this week at the County covering the developers request for the County to go on record supporting their efforts to get a $900,000 grant for water and sewer to serve the ski area. That hearing promises to be another free-for-all like the Bete Gris hearings last year. Even many ski enthusiasts question the wisdom of linking the County and all of us as taxpayers to the project with public funds.

The grant for purchasing the property around Eliza and Long Lakes seems to be stalled in the legislature. The bill carrying the recommendation for funding has not been introduced, but hopefully will be this month. We are assured that there is still no problem, just too much going on in Lansing during this election year. There are other projects around the State that were recommended for funding at the same time as ours and they are waiting too.

The water construction is supposed to begin again this week. As we woke up this morning to several inches of snow, that project may be delayed until the warm weather returns next week. The snow was beautiful, but we are a bit out of the mood after the ground was bare and we were watching for tulips to emerge.

What can we say about the past winter-or, lack of! Those of us who enjoy the beauty and pleasures of snow were sorely disappointed. Far more important, is the impact on the lakes and streams with practically no run-off. The beaches are wider than ever and the boat launch pad may not be long enough to reach a launching depth for some boats. We finally had a few hard showers one day last week, but it was a "drop in the bucket" compared to the deluges we could use. We had two weeks of warm sunny days with temperatures as high as the 60's and 70's. We saw a number of neighbors out raking their yards-it was just too nice to stay inside.

There are just two more Friday nights to gather at the Eagle Harbor Inn before Mary and Dick take a much deserved vacation. This Friday will be the St. Patrick's Day celebration. The Inn will reopen on Mother's Day.

You may be interested to know that Eagle Harbor Township contributed over $450,000 in tax monies to the school districts and the State Education fund this year. That was the summer tax collected from all of us. The winter tax covered the Township, County and all special assessments and amounted to $196,000.

As you are making plans for the delightful summer in Eagle Harbor, remember these community events and join your neighbors and friends whenever possible.

* Township Board meetings on the second Monday each month.
* Potluck suppers, usually the 4th Saturdays, June through September.
* Church services at St. Peter's By the Sea in July and August
* Services at Holy Redeemer (start in June)
* Ladies Thursday Breakfasts at the Shoreline. * Community Building dedication July 2nd or 3rd
* 4th of July parade and festivities including the Popeye Run
* Aerobics or weight training six mornings a week.
* Historical Society Tours at the Lighthouse (volunteers needed)
* Primary election in August for Township offices

If you don't have cable to keep up with events, stop by the office for information.

Late breaking news - Work at the Township Hall should be starting within the next few weeks. The contractor will be watching the weather to determine when it is prudent to start the project. We just might have those public restrooms by the 4th of July.

The crows are cawing, the bears are waking up and the late snow from this week is melting in the sun. Could the snowbirds be far behind? We will watch for lights to go on again in the sleeping cottages. It gives us the warm fuzzies just anticipating seeing you all again.

Your Eagle Harbor Correspondents,

Ann and Gerry

Ann & Gerry Johnson
HC 1 Box 280 B
Eagle Harbor, MI 49950

Ann and Gerry Letter Archive:

Fall, 1996
Winter, 1997
Spring, 1997
Fall, 1997
Winter, 1998
Spring, 1998
Fall, 1998
Winter, 1999
Spring, 1999
Winter, 2000

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