It was up to voters in Alger County to decide whether or not to renew a millage that would determine the funding for Michigan State University Extension in that county. And on May 3, the voters let their voices be heard with a resounding “yes” for MSUE.
A countywide renewal proposal of .25 mills for five years to fund MSU Extension services in Alger County passed easily, with a vote of 829-302. The levy will provide an estimated $84,928 during the first year.
Jim Isleib, Extension educator and former county Extension director in Alger County, recruited Grant Petersen to chair the Friends of Alger County MSU Extension committee that successfully campaigned for the millage renewal and felt it was “maybe the best thing I did on this election cycle.”
Said Jim Isleib, “He has done an outstanding job and is a fabulous MSU and MSUE supporter.”
District 2 coordinator Jim Lucas agrees, “Grant led a quiet and very positive campaign that brought out the supporters for what MSUE is noted for – quality programming for its citizens.”
And according to Jim Lucas, MSUE staff members who provide excellent programs and develop quality relationships within each community help bring out those “yes” voters. The people we have helped improve their lives through our quality educational process returned the favor with allowing us five more years of support.
This is the third time the millage has been approved in Alger County. It is one of only two counties that fund Extension through a dedicated property tax millage, and it was initiated a few years back when the county was facing a budget challenge. Although it’s heartening to know the voters continue to support our programs with their votes and their dedicated taxes, we’re not suggesting that this is a solution that every county would want to pursue. It really is up to the counties to determine how best to support Extension in their county. In Alger and Luce counties, the millage option is one the voters seem to prefer.