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derek dobies

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

This week, voters across Michigan go to the polls to cast ballots in a variety of local elections.

Incumbent mayors in Warren, Jackson and Flint are facing primary challenges on Tuesday.

In Flint, Mayor Karen Weaver is running for re-election after a term that has seen her city plunged into the national spotlight because of the city’s water crisis and the city’s slow recovery.

A Jackson city official is resigning from his post, three weeks after being charged with beating his girlfriend.

Andrew Frounfelker has spent more than a dozen years on the Jackson city council.

But in his resignation letter, Frounfelker says “recent publicity” had become a distraction.

That “recent publicity” is related to his arrest on a felonious assault charge.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

Jackson voters face a controversial ballot question next week.

They will decide Tuesday if they want to pay a new fee to have their leaves collected.

In 2011, the Jackson City Council created a fee to pay for leaf pick up, street cleaning and other things needed to be done to keep the city’s storm drains clear of debris. The fee raised over $1 million annually. 

But Jackson County government and local businessmen took the city to court.      

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

Jackson residents may decide in August if they are willing to pay a special tax to clean up their city streets.

Last year, the Michigan Court of Appeals ruled the city of Jackson’s storm water fee was actually an illegal tax. The fee generated about a million dollars a year for street cleaning and leaf pickup programs which without funding the city cancelled last year.

Councilman Derek Dobies says that meant homeowners couldn’t just sweep their leaves into the street they had to dispose of the leaves themselves.