Today’s Op-Ed is written by Bud Stych, a resident of Bluff Road on the Old Mission Peninsula. For more stories about the Bluff Road erosion situation, click here.
The Grand Traverse Road Commission (GTCRC) was notified about erosion to the bank in the area where Bluff Road is now failing in 2018, but refused to look into the situation or to join property owners in stabilizing the bluff.
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When a fallen tree created the first significant slide in the Fall of 2019, a resident called the GTCRC, only to be told it was not their issue; Peninsula Township had to take care of it.
Bluff Road has always been a county road; the Township has no jurisdiction over it.
The resident then contacted Township Supervisor Rob Manigold, who was subsequently told by the GTCRC that the Township had to pay for the repairs or establish a special assessment district. After Manigold insisted it was the county’s responsibility, the GTCRC took minimal action, installing orange barrels at the problem area.
At the beginning of 2020, GTCRC Manager Brad Kluczynski said it could not assess the road until at least April. Manigold offered to launch a Township Fire Department boat immediately to help GTCRC assess the situation, but Kluczynski did not respond.
If that had been done, the GTCRC could have applied for permits in early 2020. But now, due to their foot dragging, it’s likely to be too expensive to repair!
The GTCRC is not doing what they should to protect the citizens of Old Mission Peninsula. We should support Traverse City attorney Grant Parsons’ efforts to change the Road Commission from an appointed body to an elected body that would be more responsive to the citizens of the county.