The Columbia Township Park at the west end of Clark Lake has been a controversial topic.  At last night’s Township Board meeting, trustees voted to authorize the personnel committee to work with legal counsel and police chief to draft ideas to deal with abuses.  The personnel committee consists of the township supervisor, clerk, and controller.  According to Supervisor Bob Elrod the plan is to “put some teeth in the ordinance.” 

Police Chief David Elwell comments “the ordinance should be revised and modernized.”  He believes most prohibitions should remain in place, but the language of the ordinance should comply with current court requirements.  Ordinance 18 was last voted upon in 1981, and some of that may have been carried forward from earlier versions.  The chief notes “the ultimate goal is to revise the ordinance to reflect the Trustees’ intent and to create a family-friendly atmosphere in the park so that issues that come up in the summer are prevented.”

The group working on revisions may look at regulations and formats in place for Blackman Township and County parks but adapt them for local needs.

As it stands, Township Ordinance 18 governs park activity.  If you peruse it below, you will see that it covers a lot of ground, but apparently falls short of getting the job done in its current form.