Dear Kentwood Citizens,
I just have to shake my head as I write to you with my eyes on the computer screen and my peripheral vision on the twelve (12) plus inches of snow laying on the ground. Can you believe this? I trust that as you are reading these words, the temperatures will have increased, snow melted, and maybe we will have warmer weather to enjoy before winter technically begins. Whatever the conditions outside, I truly believe that we have so many things to be thankful for in this season of thanksgiving and celebration of giving.
I am thankful for our freedom paid at a high cost. I am thankful for those that paid for that freedom at the ultimate cost. I will continue to lift in prayer, the families that lost a loved one fighting for our country. Life is so precious and here in Kentwood, we invest in life each and every day through our schools, our services, and our relationships with one another. We should never take for granted the freedom that we so readily enjoy.
This year brought many changes to the inner workings of Kentwood government. Many departments have, or will have new management due to retirements. We are grateful for the work accomplished by Director of Public Works Ron Woods, Court Administrator Deb Clanton, and Director of Parks & Recreation Charlie Ziesemer. Deb’s involvement with investing in those that need guidance along with a chance to succeed is greatly appreciated. Many lives have been impacted by her leadership.
Many major projects were completed under Ron’s leadership including the building of the Justice Center, Library, DPW facility, water pump station, sanitary lift station, the remodel of City Hall, and reconstruction of numerous road projects (including Kalamazoo, Breton, and Forest Hill Avenues). Ron and Charlie teamed on multiple park projects, Paul Henry walking trail, and splash pads. Kentwood is blessed with sound infrastructure and the amenities that make our city a wonderful place to live, work, and play.
The new year will bring many opportunities to build on past successes. We are excited to have our new Parks & Recreation Director, Val Romeo, and Court Administrator, Michele White on board. We will formally appoint a new Department of Public Works Director soon. Our financial picture continues to improve with each implemented efficiency bringing cost savings to our citizens without sacrificing service. I look forward to meeting new Kentwood residents and welcoming new businesses that choose Kentwood as their home.
Blessings to you, your family, and your business!
Is the the wintery weather keeping you homebound, or are you far away on vacation? Do you need a book or entertainment right away? Check out www.kdl.org/downloads
for free eBook, movie (hoopla), music (freegal), and magazine (zinio) downloads. There is no need to scrape off your car and drive to the library, or worry about returning your library materials on time. With your KDL library card all these things and more are available to you from anywhere!
Happy “Noon” Year!
With thanks to the Friends of the Kentwood Library, the Richard L. Root Kentwood Branch is hosting two fun events for kids and families over the holiday break.
On Saturday, December 27 at 11:00 AM, join us for a Wii gaming tournament
with prizes and snacks for grades K -12 (two age divisions). Preregistration is required for this program.
We will be celebrating a Countdown to the “Noon” Year
with treats, noisemakers and fun activities at 11:30 AM on Wednesday, December 31! This event is for the whole family.
Call 784-2007 for more information on library events and services.
Kentwood (Richard L. Root) Branch Manager
Richard L. Root Kentwood Branch
4950 Breton, SE
Monday –Thursday 9:30-8:00 pm
Friday, Saturday 9:30 -5:00 pm
Sunday, 1:00 – 5:00 PM
Winter property tax bills were issued December 1st and are due February 14, 2015. This bill represents the 2014 winter tax. The City Assessor determines the value of the property on Dec 31st of each year. The following calendar year the tax bill is issued in 2 installments; summer in July & winter in December. Most of the annual tax (up to 75-85%*) is levied on the summer bill. The remainder is billed December. This bill levies the tax for the taxing authorities referenced on the bill (1/2 of the local school, non-operating County and all of the Kent District Library tax. (*depending on PRE/MBT % status). The tax bills do not cover specific months, but rather, levy different taxes due for the entire year. The total of the 2 bills is the annual property tax due for 2014.
A 3% penalty will be assessed regardless of the circumstances for tax bills paid after February 14th. Payments must be received at the lockbox, Treasurer’s Office, or City Hall dropbox by 5:00p.m. on the due date; postmarks cannot be accepted as date of payment
Payments are posted immediately upon receipt in the Treasurer’s Office and may be viewed on the City’s website: www.ci.kentwood.mi.us
(Left side of home page under Quick Links- click on Tax/Water Info & Payments)
The last day real estate tax payments can be accepted by the City of Kentwood is February 28, 2015. All real estate tax unpaid by February 28, 2015 will be turned over as delinquent to the Kent County Treasurer for collection as mandated by Michigan Property Tax Law. Delinquent personal property tax payments are collected by the City of Kentwood.
Convenient Payment Options:
• The non-cash
Teller Tube and 24 hour payment drop box located off Breton entrance between City Hall and the Library
• Cash, Check or Credit Cards are accepted at City Hall Monday- Friday 8am -5pm
• Online at www.ci.kentwood.mi.us
• By phone 1-844-400-3552
Fee to use Credit or Debit Cards is 3% of the payment or a minimum of $2
Feel free to contact the Treasurer’s Office at (616)554-0761 with any additional questions
Michigan property tax laws have required the assessing and taxation of the furniture, machinery and equipment of businesses since the 1800’s. For 2015, all owners of business personal property in Michigan must continue to file the appropriate forms with the assessor where the property is located on December 31, 2014.
Beginning last year, those businesses with less than $80,000 True Cash Value of personal property owned, leased or used by them (or any related entity) within a tax-collecting municipality could qualify for an exemption if they timely filed the Michigan State Tax Commission’s affidavit. This exemption continues in 2015. Exemption affidavits must be fully completed and in the assessor’s hands by February 10.
To determine whether or not a business qualifies for the exemption, it may be necessary to complete the “2015 Personal Property Statement” (Department of Treasury Form 632). If the total value (including related entities) after applying the published multipliers to owned, used and leased equipment original costs is less than $80,000, Treasury Form 5076 “Affidavit of Owner of Eligible Personal Property Claiming Exemption” may be filed no later than February 10 to claim the exemption from personal property taxes for this year. Filings received after February 10 cannot be processed and a Personal Property Statement must be filed by February 20.
Since both forms are available on-line where they can be filled out more easily than the paper copies of the past, the City of Kentwood will be mailing informational letters January 2, 2015 to those entities believed to have reportable personal property in the City of Kentwood as of December 31, 2014. The letters will include the correct parcel number and the name of the business on our records to be used in the completion of the appropriate form(s). Report corrections to names and mailing addresses on submitted forms. Owners are responsible to timely file even if not in receipt of the letter.
Those businesses who have owned, leased, or borrowed personal property with a True Cash Value of $80,000 or more must continue to complete the “2015 Personal Property Statement” due on February 20. Additionally, manufacturers may be required to complete Treasury form 5201 beginning this year. Refer to instructions.
Any business owner who requires a hard copy of the form may contact the Assessor’s Office and arrangements will be made to get the forms into his/her hands. Questions may also be directed to our office. Contact us at eAssessor@ci.kentwood.mi.us or (616)554-0723.
For a video discussion, check out: http://mediasite.mihealth.org/Mediasite/Play/44d11
SIDEWALK SNOW REMOVAL
Please take the time to clear the snow and ice from the sidewalk running along your property. Especially within the first 24hrs after it has snowed. Our ordinance reads; “Any accumulation of two or more inches of snow shall be considered sufficient to impair or impede free passage. Such accumulation must be removed within 24 hours after the cessation of snowfall. Remember, failure do to so could result in a Fine of $65. If you have a neighbor that is elderly or handicapped, please also consider lending them a helping hand. Under winter conditions it is desirable for those walking or using a wheelchair to use the sidewalk as opposed to sharing the snowy, slippery streets with cars and trucks.
CLEAR STREETS, WINTER PARKING RULES AND YOU!
It’s that time of year again where we will soon see the snow plows out clearing our streets. Kentwood’s Winter Parking Rules are intended to assist the City’s Department of Public Works in clearing our streets of snow. Vehicles may not be parked on City streets between 1AM and 8AM from Nov. 15 to March 15 (whether there is snow on the ground or not), or at any other times when on-street parking could impair or impede snowplowing, cleaning or maintenance operations. The fine for violating this ordinance is $20. The Department of Public Works and your Police Department greatly appreciates your assistance in cleaning our streets.
AVOID COMMON WINTER CAR THEFT. DON’T BE A VICTIM
On a cold winter’s day are you tempted to let your car “warm-up” by letting it idle, unattended in your driveway? Every year we investigate car thefts as a result of cars “warming up” unattended in a driveway. Also; Please NEVER warm up your car in a closed garage; carbon monoxide poisoning is possible.
December 3 • Elves Express Shop • 4-8pm (KAC)
December 3 • Annual Tree Lighting • 6-8pm (KAC) FREE, Candy Cane Hunt at 6pm
December 12 • Kentwood Seniors Chorale Community Christmas Concert • 7pm (HBC)
The Kentwood Economic Development Corporation (EDC) has adopted a Strategic Plan to direct economic development activities in the next five years, with the goal of keeping the city a successful and vibrant place for business activity. The Plan will address key areas of economic development activities, including Government Relations, Business Tools, and Communications.
The Government Relations portion of the plan uses the EDC as a conduit between local business leaders, legislators, and local economic development organizations such as the Right Place, Inc. or the Chamber of Commerce. The goal is awareness and enactment of policies that support the retention and expansion of our local Kentwood businesses.
The Business Tools portion of the Strategic Plan disseminates necessary information to the business community, including the tools and incentives available from federal, state, and local resources. At the center of this communication effort is the continuation of the Business Retention Program in which staff members conduct site visits to major employers.
Finally, the Communications portion of the Strategic Plan identifies ways to promote Kentwood as a community open to business, fair to developers and welcome to all. A portion of the communications involves social media and branding to maintain Kentwood’s “Open for Business” approach.
Contact Lisa Golder (616) 554-0709 if you have any questions.
Director of Public Works
17 Years of Service
Detective Bureau Secretary
36 Years of Service
Court Administrator/ Magistrate
30 Years of Service
28 Years of Service
Kentwood Newsletter Archive
12/20/2013 - City of Kentwood Newsletter - Winter 2013
4/1/2014 - City of Kentwood Newsletter - Spring 2014
7/15/2014 - City of Kentwood Newsletter - Summer 2014