Davison representative strives to give townships the power to change names

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Michigan townships are one step closer to initiating a name change if approved by voters.

State Representative David Martin de Davison led Michigan House in approving a bill that would give townships the same power as towns and villages in Michigan.

SEE ALSO: Flint Township Seeks to Change Name to Distance itself from Flint

Martin, a Republican, said in a press release that townships should be given the option to seek approval from residents in order to change township charters.

“Simply put, the law is not fair,” Martin said. “If a municipality wants to change its name and the majority of voters in the community approve, there is absolutely no reason for the state to prevent it. “

Martin noted that there are many duplicate township names in Michigan. For example, “Township of Gaines” is a name used by the townships of Genesee County and Kent County in the western part of Michigan. In fact, 28% of Michigan townships share a name with another township in the state.

SEE ALSO: Man dies at Gaines Township baby shower after explosion

Martin’s legislation, House Bill 4637, would allow a township to change its name if a township’s board of directors approves the measure by a two-thirds majority. The resolution is then expected to be approved by a majority of township voters in a regular election in August or November.

The measure has received overwhelming bipartisan support in the House and will now go to the Michigan State Senate for further consideration.

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