Michael Tipton Running for Howell-Cohoctah Area County Commission Seat
A member of the Howell Township board of trustees has announced he will run for a seat on the Livingston County Commission in order to bring balance, business experience, and more openness to county government.
Michael Tipton of Howell Township filed his nomination papers on Tuesday, February 12, for the Democratic nomination for the District 5 County Commission seat. His nominating petitions included signatures from all three areas of District 5 - the City of Howell and the townships of Howell and Cohoctah.
“Livingston County residents deserve a county commission that is representative of the entire county. I will bring balance to the board, along with experience dealing with township government and a wealth of business experience,” Tipton said.
For too long, Tipton said, the District 5 has been represented by a narrow range of individuals, primarily Grand River Blvd. lawyers who have had few connections to the townships or the middle class in the district.
The primary election is set for Tuesday, May 7, and the general election for Tuesday, August 6. The winner will finish out a term that ends December 31, 2014.
Tipton applied for the vacancy and was one of four people interviewed by the commission. The vacancy was created when Jay Drick resigned to become a magistrate in the 53rd District Court. The all-Republican panel selected local attorney Don Parker Esq. to fill the seat temporarily until the election to fill the rest of the term.
"The commission has had its say and now it’s time for the voters of District 5 to have theirs, to look over my qualifications and ideas and make up their own minds," Tipton said.
Tipton has served on the Howell Township Board of Trustees since November 2012. During his campaign for the position, he actively opposed a 3.5 mill tax increase sought by the former board to cover the cost of bonds for water and sewer projects in subdivisions being built by private developers. When the recession hit, the private developers walked away and left the subdivisions unfinished. With too few residents to pay off the bonds, the township has had to come up with funds to make the payments. Tipton argued that the township should focus on selling some of its land in order to meet bond payments for the sewer projects and the township has already been able to do so.
"We are seeing progress on some of our problems. I will bring the same kind of problem-solving to the county commission, which is also dealing with bad debt for sewer projects it backed throughout the county," Tipton said.
Tipton said his other priorities include bringing more transparency to county government, working more closely with townships and residents, and improving basic county services required to spur real economic growth.
Tipton moved to the City of Howell in 2003 and bought a home in Howell Township in 2004 while commuting to his job as Purchasing Manager for Capital Area Transportation Authority (CATA) in Lansing. From 2007 to 2011 he held Purchasing Agent positions with SNC-Lavalin and Bechtel Corp, working on power and nuclear clean-up projects from Washington State to Minneapolis to Dubai and points in between. Prior to that, Tipton received a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from the University of Missouri and for 20 years held progressively more responsible procurement positions with McDonnell Douglas Corp. (now Boeing) in St. Louis, MO, Long Beach, and San Jose, CA.
Now retired, Mike is married and his wife, Judith, is the Associate Director of Development for Michigan State University’s School of Human Medicine. They have four grown children and one adorable granddaughter.
Anyone wishing more information about the campaign may contact Tipton at email@example.com or call 517-672-0556.
(Paid for by Friends of Michael Tipton, 552 Olde English Circle, Howell, MI 48855. Labor donated.)