2017-06-15 / Front Page

Contract rescinded, board tussles with ex-clerk candidate

By Gary Gould
810-452-2650 • ggould@mihomepaper.com

DAVISON TWP. — The board of trustee voted June 12 to rescind a contract with Fred Jackson, who would have been the township’s roads and bridges supervisor, after nearly a month of accusations of a conflict of interest.

On the advice of township Attorney David Lattie, the board decided to end the contract with Jackson, who would have taken on some responsibilities of retiring Zoning and Building Supervisor Randy Stewart, who leaves at the end of the month.

Jackson would have been paid $35,000 annually for his expertise with roads and bridges, as well as proper maintenance of the storm sewer system in the township.

Clerk Cindy Shields said Tuesday the board made the decision to rescind the original contract with Roads & Bridges, Inc. in order to have the ability to negotiate a new, more detailed contract which should better serve the needs of the residents

“In identifying the job duties of Randy, the allocation of those duties when he retires June 30 and what the process would be for the carrying out of those duties, it became clear that the original contract was lacking in sufficient detail,” said Shields.

Resident Matthew Smith, Jr., who ran for the clerk’s position in the 2016 elections and lost, was at the meeting accusing the board of “corruption” because of Jackson’s other occupation – vice president of Waldorf & Sons, which has done a lot of business with the township.

Smith has been a critic of the board and has claimed corruption, but has not produced evidence to support his allegations. However, he said he thinks Jackson’s appointment was “corruption” because in his opinion it was a conflict of interest.

After Smith made charges of corruption and claims of misuse of funds, at the June 12 meeting, Stewart addressed the board – not as zoning and building administrator, but as a resident.

“Since the last election (in November 2016) Smith has been here complaining and its nothing but sour grapes,” said Stewart. “His remarks are slanderous, childish and immature.”

Stewart also disputed a charge made by Smith that the township was paying for his retirement party using public funds, stating his wife, Robin, and Fred Jackson, had raised the money themselves to pay for it.

“No township funds were used for my retirement party,” he said. “There’s no ‘golden parachute’ – it’s all untrue.”

Jackson also disputed Smith claims of corruption and a conflict of interest.

Smith said what he said about the Jackson appointment was not a lie.

“Tonight that was clear. I want to thank the Board for agreeing with me,” he said, of the decision to rescind the Jackson appointment. “As far as them talking about the election and my career, I’m not even elected and I’m impacting their decisions.”

Smith’s Facebook page also carried his claims against the township officials and a comment in which he said: “Looks like there is a new leader in Davison Twp. Amazing what you can do by putting out a Facebook video and hitting people with facts.”

Return to top

Copyright © 2009-2018 The Davison Index, All Rights Reserved

Click here for digital edition
2017-06-15 digital edition