July 2023 / Vol. 04

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August 1


August 4


August 4

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As of the 4:00 p.m., Tuesday, July 25th deadline to file nominating petitions, the following candidates were officially certified for the Office of Mayor and City Commission.

Office of Mayor (one seat available)

Two-year term ending November 10, 2025

Tom Mair

Amy Shamroe

Office of City Commissioner (three seats available)

Four-year term ending November 8, 2027

Jackie Anderson

Kenneth M. Funk

Caroline Kennedy

Mary Mills

Chris Minkin

Shea M. O’Brien

Merek Roman

Heather Shaw

Mitchell Treadwell

The withdrawal deadline for candidates is Friday, July 28, at 4:00 p.m.

Candidates that are elected at the November 7, 2023, election will be sworn in to office on Monday, November 13, 2023 at 7:00 p.m.

City Commission Functions

The City Commission is the legislative body of the City of Traverse City, and essentially functions as the City's "board of directors." The following is the mission statement for the City Commission:

The mission of the Traverse City City Commission is to guide the preservation and development of the City’s infrastructure, services, and planning, based on extensive participation by its citizens coupled with the expertise of the city’s staff. The Commission will both lead and serve Traverse City in developing a vision for sustainability and the future that is rooted in the hopes and input of its citizens and organizations, as well as cooperation from surrounding units of government.

Very broadly speaking, the functions of the City Commission for the City of Traverse City are to:

  • Set public policy for the City through ordinances and other official actions.
  • Allocate public funds under the city's control and responsibility, including adoption of the City Budget.
  • Exercise policy oversight of the city's resources.
  • Appoint the City Manager and City Attorney; and in order to maintain a system of checks and balances, to provide for appropriate separation of duties and autonomy in conducting and performing official and corporate functions, the City Commission approves the City Manager's indefinite appointment, and the removal of the City Clerk and the City Treasurer.
  • Appoint individuals to various board and commissions.
  • Exercise other authority and powers granted to it by the Michigan Constitution, Michigan Law, Michigan Promulgated Rules, the City Charter and other authorities. 


The City of Traverse City’s Assessing Department recently received a perfect score on the State of Michigan’s Assessment Roll and Practices Audit. The audit is required by Public Act 660 of 2018, on behalf of the State Tax Commission. The audit includes substantial compliance review and technical compliance review.


The City’s Assessing Department is entrusted with the responsibility of maintaining the City's assessment rolls for all assessable property, both real and personal, located within the City limits for Grand Traverse & Leelanau Counties.

Assessment and taxable value determinations are made in accordance with the requirements of Chapter 211 of the Michigan Compiled Laws (MCL), otherwise known as the "General Property Tax Act" (often referred to as the GPTA).

The State Tax Commission is comprised of 3-members appointed by the Governor with the advice and consent of the Senate. The State Tax Commission has general supervision of the administration of the Property Tax Laws in Michigan and shall render such assistance and give such advice to assessors, as they deem necessary.  




The City was recently approached by TCAPS School Board members about re-implementing a School Resource Officer (SRO) within Traverse City Central High School. At their July 17, 2023 meeting the City Commission approved a contract that would authorize the provision of a school resource officer for Traverse City Central High School.

The School Resource Officer Program, established in 1982, is one of the most important, successful, and long-term programs within the Traverse City Police Department. The program utilizes a multi-disciplined approach, including education, prevention of crime, investigation of criminal incidents involving school aged children as either victims or offenders, and offender rehabilitation. 

The SRO program at Traverse City Central High School would mirror the program the department already has in place at Northwest Education Services (NW Ed). The NW Ed SRO, Jennilyn Oster, is a certified officer through the National Association of School Resource Officers (NASRO). She maintains her credentials by attending on-going training both with NASRO and SEPLA (Schools, Educators, Police Liaison Association) as well as with the Department of Homeland Security. 

TCAPS was recently awarded a State of Michigan School Resource Officer Grant which will be utilized to fund the position.


Join the City and Jacobs Engineering for a public open house at the Traverse City Regional Wastewater Treatment Plant Facility on Friday, August 4th from 10 am to 2 pm.  

Tour-goers will follow the path of wastewater as it travels through multiple treatment processes to remove pollutants, and protect the waterway. Attendees will learn how and what microorganisms remove organic matter, what role membrane filtration plays, how biogas produced during digestion is recycled as an energy source, what happens to the solids during and after treatment, and much more.

Plant tours will be provided on the hour

  • 10:00 am
  • 11:00 am
  • 12:00 pm
  • 1:00 pm

Tour Requirements

  • Children under 10 must be accompanied by an adult
  • All participants must wear close toed shoes
  • Hard hats and safety glasses are required and will be provided
  • For security purposes, photos are not permitted


AUGUST 28, 2023

The demand for housing in our region remains high, particularly in locations that are convenient and accessible to one’s daily needs. Land use regulations as they relate to permitting housing types, densities, and locations are just one of the many levers influencing housing needs in the City, but one that City Commission and Planning Commission have direct influence over.

At their June 6, 2023 meeting, the Planning Commission approved an amendment to the Traverse City Code of Ordinances to allow additional dwelling types and to modify dimensional standards in the R-1a, R-1b and R-2 residential zoning districts.

Proposed Zoning Changes

  • Create Definitions for Duplexes, Triplexes, and Quadplexes
  • Eliminate the Annual Cap on Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs)
  • Remove the Owner-Occupancy Requirement for ADUs
  • Allow ADUs with Duplexes
  • Allow Duplexes by Right in the R-1a/b zoning District
  • Allow up to Four Dwelling Units Per Lot in the R-2 District
  • Reduce Minimum Lot Area in R-1a/b Zoning District
  • Reduce Minimum Lot Width in the R-1a/b Zoning District
  • Marginally Increase Impervious Surface Limits
  • Allow Two Homes on a Lot That is Twice the Minimum Area without Being Split
  • Reduce the Minimum Land Area for the Cluster Housing Development Option
  • Rename the R-1a/b and R-2 Zoning Districts to Reflect the Proposed Changes

Next Steps

The item will be discussed at a City Commission Study Session on Monday, August 28, 2023. If it so chooses, the City Commission will then need to schedule a public hearing to take place at a Regular City Commission meeting in order to take action on the recommended amendments.



The candidates for City Commission and Mayor, and City staff, attended the City's Candidate Tour this week. The day consisted of presentations from City departments and facility tours of the Water and Wastewater Treatment Plants, Traverse City Light & Power, Hickory Hills, and more!


Traverse City American Legion Baseball has been a beloved tradition for 75 years, bringing together families and friends every summer to celebrate America's favorite pastime. The Civic Center is a hub of activity as spectators gather to cheer on their favorite teams. For players, the season is a chance to hone their skills and make lifelong memories on the field.

As the season comes to a close, the excitement builds to a fever pitch. For many families, the tradition of attending these games goes back generations. It's a chance to connect with the community and share a love of the game. Here's to many more summers of baseball and memories in the heart of the City!

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