S.O.P.

Posted By – Dale Mathes, Code Enforcement Officer

Anyone who is a member of any large organization, be it the military, a bureaucracy, or a large corporation knows the acronym “S.O.P.”  It stands for standard operating procedure.

Sample Violation Letter

Sample Violation Letter

Auburn Hills’ Code Enforcement Officers use a regular and consistent S.O.P. as well in dealing with violations of the City’s ordinances.  Violations come to our attention either by complaints from citizens or City employees or are observed by the officers as part of their daily neighborhood rounds.

When a violation is confirmed, a written Violation Notice is mailed to the owner of the property outlining the problem, what the citizen can do to correct the situation and a timeline for doing so.  Once the time line (usually 10 days) has elapsed, the officer rechecks the situation to see if there has been compliance.

If compliance is not met, generally, an additional Violation Notice is sent stressing the fact that a Municipal Civil Infraction Ticket could be issued if the problem is not taken care of.  The vast majority of people do comply but in the rare instance that the notices are ignored, a ticket will be issued via certified mail.  The ticket could be one with a fine only or could require an appearance at 52nd/3rd District Court.  This usually depends on the severity of the violation and/or the citizen’s history of past violations.

This procedure of violation confirmation, violation advisement, re-checking twice, issuance of infraction and court adjudication can take up to six months or longer.  Please be patient with Code Enforcement if you have filed a complaint.  Our S.O.P. demands a step-by-step process to insure the rights of all.  It’s based on State law and experience.

One thing to remember when making a complaint about a possible violation is that even though the title is “Officer,” Code Enforcement Officers have nowhere near the same powers as Police Officers.  They are prohibited from entering any property without permission.  All observations must be made from a public area, like the street or sidewalk.  This can result in not being able to observe rear yards or other concealed locations.

Auburn Hills Code Enforcement Officers Darren Darge (left) and Dale Mathes (right)

Auburn Hills Code Enforcement Officers Darren Darge (left) and Dale Mathes (right)

Over the past few years, we have seen a steady decline in the number of violations issued by the City due to the fact that the vast majority of Auburn Hills’ citizens and businesses take pride in their property and neighborhoods.  We hope that becomes everyone’s S.O.P.

A Fruitful Outcome: Auburn Grove Condominiums Sees Progress

Posted by – Steve Cohen, Director of Community Development

The Great Recession really did a number on the housing market.  Between 2005 and 2013, few were buying homes due to the economic uncertainty.  Many residential projects throughout the region stalled and were left incomplete.  Unfortunately, that’s what happened with the Auburn Grove Condominiums project, which is located north of Shimmons Road, west of Squirrel Road.  Due to lack of sales, the original developer had to forfeit the property back to the bank in 2010 with only 67 of the planned 124 units being built.  Things didn’t look good.

Corlina in the Park, later renamed Auburn Grove, was approved for construction by the City Council in 2003

Corlina in the Park, later renamed Auburn Grove, was approved for construction by the City Council in 2003

As discussed in our February 16, 2012 blog entry, Hope in the Housing Bubble, the City of Auburn Hills played a proactive role in facilitating the sale of the undeveloped land within the project (57 units) to a new builder in late 2011.  Now, three years later, all involved are seeing the fruits of their labor.

Twelve units have been built and sold, eleven units are under construction and near completion, and the builder has pulled permits to start construction on seven additional units this Spring.  If the current pace continues, the project should be complete by the end of 2017.

photo 1 photo 3photo 2

This development is a great option for folks desiring ranch-style living in a maintenance-free condominium community.  It’s surrounded by woods, but close to everything.  If you’re looking for a new place to call home, check out their website by clicking here.  Better hurry, it will soon be sold out.

 

 

 

A Good And Beautiful Life

Posted by – Steve Cohen, Director of Community Development

The legend of former UCLA basketball coach John Wooden will live on for generations.  Although he left the coaching profession 40 years ago, and died in 2010 at the age of 99, this man is still talked about with great reverence – especially this time of the year.

Coach Wooden won a record number of games and championships.  He did it the right way - with integrity.

Coach Wooden won a record number of games and championships. He did it the right way – with integrity.

In his book, The Good and Beautiful Life, author James Bryan Smith discussed an interview he had with Coach Wooden in 2006.  Smith asked him the secret to his good life.  He said, “Jim, I made up my mind in 1935 to live by a set of principles, and I never wavered from them … Principles like courage and honesty and hard work, character and loyalty, and virtue and honor – these are what constitute a good life.”  He further explained that his principles were grounded in his faith.

A memorable story often told about him was that on the first day of basketball practice he would spend the first hour teaching the players how to put their socks on properly.  If done incorrectly, they would get blisters.  Smith explained that Coach Wooden was teaching his players an important life principle:  Do even the small things well.

We can learn a lot from studying the lives of people.  No one is perfect, but if we are intentional about doing enough small things well with integrity, like Coach Wooden, we will live a good and beautiful life.

Hard To Say Goodbye

Posted by – Steve Cohen, Director of Community Development

Today is Karrie Marsh’s last day.  It’s hard to say goodbye to this wonderful person.

Karrie Marsh

Karrie Marsh

For those who don’t know, Karrie Marsh is the Executive Assistant for the City Manager.  She is leaving us for a great opportunity at a local school.  We wish her much success in her new position.

Karrie didn’t just assist the City Manager, she helped everyone in the organization.  Simply, she made the City of Auburn Hills better during her time with us.  Karrie was the person, often behind the scenes, that helped keep things running and made others look good.  A natural-born servant leader.

Karrie, thank you for your dedication to the community and service to your co-workers.

You will be missed.

New Church Set To Open On Lapeer Road

Posted by – Steve Cohen, Director of Community Development

We wish to welcome Genesis Christian Church to the City of Auburn Hills!

Pastor William Bell, Jr. and First Lady Dedtra J. Bell

Pastor William Bell, Jr. and First Lady Dedtra J. Bell

This past Monday, the City Council approved the church’s permit to locate at 2655 Lapeer Road.  The site was the former home of the Santa Fe Authentic Mexican Restaurant.  The 100 member congregation plans to convert the 5,046 square foot building into their own permanent meeting place.  The church currently gathers in rented space at the Concorde Inn, located in the City of Rochester Hills.

Renovations to the building will consist of general repairs and cosmetic changes.  Their plan is to open for services later in the Spring.  Pastor William Bell, Jr. has indicated that the church is eager to become part of the community.

We’re very pleased that they chose to grow in Auburn Hills.

Construction Begins on Noah’s

Posted by – Elizabeth Brennan, Executive Assistant

Construction started this week on Noah’s, a 10,300 sq. ft. multi-purpose event and conference center.  The $4 million dollar project is located at the southwest corner of North Squirrel Road and Cross Creek Parkway, across from Oakland University.

foundation complete

The building’s foundation, barely visible in the photo above, is complete and work will continue next week with additional grading of the site, underground plumbing and concrete.

perspctive

Construction on the event center is expected to be complete in mid-summer this year.  Stay tuned for updates!

 

 

Luck of the Irish: Shannon Precision Fastener Opens in Auburn Hills

Posted by – Howard Wager, Building Inspector 

Last Friday, the City of Auburn Hills was pleased to be a part of the opening celebration for Shannon Precision Fastener’s new facility at 4425 Purks Road.  The Madison Heights-based company manufactures powertrain parts, chassis parts, and seat belt bolts.

Prior to joining the City, this project was one of many that I worked on for Shannon as a superintendent for Rhoads & Johnson Construction.  Ed Lumm with Shannon (left) and Howard Wager (right)

Prior to joining the City, this project was one of many that I worked on for Shannon as a superintendent for Rhoads & Johnson Construction. Ed Lumm with Shannon (left) and Howard Wager (right)

In 2014, Shannon purchased the 183,000 square foot building previously occupied by Lear Seating.  They have since renovated the facility and site by adding a new truck dock, quality control room, and landscaping.  They’re now in the process of adding fresh air intakes and smog control systems in the factory to ensure clean air and a safe environment, inside and out.

The company plans to also fill space in the plant with additional machinery within the next four years, which will produce several new job openings within the City.

I know this company very well based on my past work with them.  They’re a first-class organization.

Mayor Kevin McDaniel, along with City Manager Tom Tanghe, and Assistant City Manager Don Grice, presented a City Flag to Shannon Fasteners to show the City's commitment and partnership in their new endeavor.

Mayor Kevin McDaniel, along with City Manager Tom Tanghe and Assistant City Manager Don Grice, presented a City Flag to Shannon Precision Fasteners to show the City’s commitment and partnership in their new endeavor.

We wish them good luck and continued success.