Thursday, March 27, 2008

24 Hours of Golf Fundraiser-The Pines of Lake Isabella

Posted by:

Fiorillo Woodworking
Mike Fiorillo
565 North Coldwater Rd.
Lake Isabella, MI 48893


First of all, yes, I am crazy. There, now that's out of the way, I am pleased to inform you that I will again be undertaking the 24 Hours of Golf Fundraising Marathon to benefit the golf program at Chippewa hills High School.

Simply put, I will be playing golf for 24 hours straight, starting April 27th @ 8 am through April 28th @ 8 am.

My goal this year is to play 500 holes, and with the help of my crew of drivers and a 40 MPH (!) Polaris Ranger donated by Lakeside Motor Sports,
we will do it.

When I was going to Chip back in the day, the golf team didn't even exist yet, and I was disappointed, as I could have been a relatively successful high school golfer. Instead, I rode the pine for the football, basketball and baseball teams.

Fast forward 20 some years, and my daughter Mariah is now playing on the girls golf team, and has progressed from averaging 80+ per 9 holes her freshman year to avg. 46 per 9 holes and being 1st team all conference in her recent junior season. Mariah is even considering going into a Professional Golf Mgmt. course of study after High School.

I am undertaking this fundraiser to insure that money does not get in the way of the CHHS golf program being successful, and if they need extra funding to put them over the top , they will have it.

If you are interested in helping, you have many options. First of all, we are looking for a handful of drivers, who preferably are also golfers and familiar with The Pines course at Lake Isabella.

Additionally, if you are interested in making a pledge or doing some advertising for your business we have the following options:

1. Tee Sponsor $100: Company or individual name on tee sponsor sign throughout the weekend

2. Silent Auction donation-silent auction to be held at The Pines clubhouse the week prior to the event ( preferably $50 value or more).

3. Hole pledge $.01/hole or larger accepted - a $.10/hole pledge receives a free sleeve of CHHS logo golf balls

Thanks for your time and please contact me with any questions.


Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Village Applies for 2% Funding

The Village of Lake Isabella plans to submit six applications to the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe for 2% funding. The six applications cover a wide range of projects and needs which would greatly impact the community. Collectively, the applications request $837,733 of grant monies from the tribe. Under a consent judgement, the tribe is required to disburse 2% of its electronic gaming revenue to local units of government to cover costs of service demands created from the development of the Casino. The Village was last awarded 2% funds as part of a multi-jurisdictional request in 2005 to bring curbside recycling to seveal out-county communities. In summary, the applications are as follows:

$299,720 for traffic calming on El Camino Grande: If awarded, funds would be used to vastly improve the transportation infrastructure on El Camino Grande. The project calls for a landscaped divider to be erected in two section of the street, along with islands at the entrance to the street. The design of the project is to add features to the street that will naturally calm the flow of traffic on this busy street.

$246,281 for a pedestrian path along El Camino Grande and Queens Way: If awarded, funds would be used to construct a non-motorized path along Queens Way from Gilmore Park north to Drew Road, and along the entire length of El Camino Grande. This project would create a safe alternative for the many residents who recreationally walk along El Camino Grande. With the path being featuring a trail-head at Gilmore Park, the ability for residents from across the community to utilize the path would be secured.

$184,516 for a dedicated 2-year patrol agreement with the Isabella County Sheriff’s Department. If awarded, funds would be used to cover most of the costs associated with implementing a 2-year agreement with the Sheriff’s Department to hire a Sheriff’s Deputy and have dedicated patrols in the Village.

$49,500 for overall quality of life improvements. If awarded, funds would be used on several projects to enhance the quality of life in the Village. Funds would be used for community recreation, public safety, fireworks, signs, a community clean-up day, and first aid equipment.

$32,716 for street maintenance equipment. If awarded, funds would be used to purchase 2 pieces of machinery for maintenance on the 27+ miles of streets in the Village. The Village would purchase a new hotpatch machine and a crack sealing machine.

$25,000 for a DPW truck. If awarded, funds would be used to purchase a new DPW dump truck to be used in maintaining the streets.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Lake Isabella's Geothermal System

The Lake Isabella Village Hall is going to be the feature of an article next month in the Michigan Municipal League's magizine The Review. The focus of the next issue is on green technology in Michigan, and the Municipal League wants to highlight local units of government that have utilized green technology. Lake Isabella is one of only a handful of municipalities in the state tha have went with a geothermal system to heat and cool their office location.

The next issue of The Review is currently at press, but you can read the full article for yourself below.


This past September the Village of Lake Isabella completed a much anticipated move into a new office building. Prior to the move, Michigan’s youngest municipality had been operating out of a rented office suite of less than 400 square feet. The new office building features 2,500 square feet of meeting and office space, and is located in the community’s growing central business district.

When the building was originally designed and bid, the plans called for a conventional air intake heating and cooling system. Early in the construction schedule the Village requested that the general contractor provide a change order for consideration that if approved, would upgrade the conventional heating and cooling system to a geothermal system.

Councilmember Jeff Grey was a strong advocate of incorporating a geothermal system into the new building. Grey has been using a geothermal system in his home for several years and was able to convincingly show that the long term cost savings which he has enjoyed would also be realized by the Village for the new building. Grey is not alone in using the technology in the Lake Isabella area. According to the local electric company, over 50 of the 900 homes in Lake Isabella are already using a geothermal heating and cooling system.

With the Village Council’s interest in the system, the Village began to explore sources of funding to help cover the anticipated cost of upgrading to a geothermal system. The Village did not have to look far to find assistance. The local electric cooperative, Homeworks Tri-County, has been strongly pushing geothermal systems to help conserve energy use across its service area. Seeing the potential to use the new Village Hall as a showcase for the benefits of geothermal systems, Homeworks Tri-County awarded the Village with a grant for $3,500 to help cover the costs of installing a geothermal system.

With that information in hand, the Village Council was presented with the proposed change order to upgrade to a geothermal heating and cooling system in the amount of $9,852, and the grant from Homeworks Tri-County. With the total cost to the Village being only $6,352 and the low bidder being a local company, McGuire Heating and Cooling, the Village Council unanimously approved the change.

The Village’s system is what is known as an “open loop.” Water is pumped from an onsite well into the system where the natural heat from the earth is transferred from the water into the air that is forced through the ventilation ducts in the building. Once the heat from the water has been used, the water is then returned to the ground via an 800 gallon dry-well. In an open loop system water is continuously taken from, and returned to the ground. The process is essentially the same to heat or cool the building. The heat energy from the water is used to warm or cool the air being forced through the ventilation ducts prior to the air entering the furnace. Utilizing the thermal energy stored in the ground for heating and cooling is very efficient. The EPA estimates that by using a geothermal system, you will reduce your energy consumption for heating and cooling by 44% to 72%.

The budgetary impact of the system was noticed immediately. Since going online in mid-September the Village has spent a total of $227 to heat and cool their building. Or, an average of less than $46 per month with the thermostat set at a comfortable 70 degrees. The highest monthly bill to date was $69 for the February billing cycle. During this same time period their former office building, with only 1,500 total square feet of office space spent $1,288 in heating costs. At the current market rates for energy, the Village expects to see a return on investment in less than 5 years.

The geothermal system was not the only energy saving measure utilized by the Village in the new office building. All exterior lighting is timed to only be on during key hours, low maintenance landscaping was used, “energy star” light bulbs and office equipment are featured throughout the building, and blown cellulose insulation made primarily from recycled newspaper is found in all walls. With the Village still experiencing over 20 new homes constructed annually, the new Village Hall is a showcase to the community, home builders, and prospective residents that green technology is more than adequate to meet individual home owner needs and significantly save them money in the long term.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Why Blog?

Greetings! Let me begin by expressing a sincere “thank you” for checking in on the inaugural post to the Lake Isabella blog. The most relevant question to cover in this post is the simple matter of “why.”

Why launch a blog, and what advantages are there in blogging for the community. To begin with, the Village realized that there is an interest in e-communication to and from your local unit of government. We based this assumption on the responses to our e-newsletter and the number of e-mail addresses we send it to. In reviewing the best way to met this demand and need, we realized that the e-newsletter was not the best medium available to deliver the best product to you. Communication with the e-newsletter is basically one-way. It works well to inform, but fails to enhance transparency with open dialogue. We still we do the e-newsletter, but in a greatly reduced and headline bulleted style. Future e-newsletters will be sent out and focus mainly on meeting reminders, election information, and other relevant community event information.

The blog on the other hand will be the main online portal for dialogue and information about Lake Isabella. This information will not be limited the Village government, but will cover community promotion in general. Our blog has been created with the following purpose statement to guide it;

Purpose/Goals: The purpose and goals of the Lake Isabella Blog are as follows:
◘ Educate the public about the government of Lake Isabella
◘ Advocacy for the local business sector
◘ Promote the community and its residents
◘ Increase transparency and connection in and to local government via an open forum

Blogging in local government is a communication medium that is ahead of the bell-curve. Governmental websites are becoming very common, and a great means of gaining basic information about a community. But even great websites still lack in two-way communication and fresh content that promotes the community. We firmly believe that our website is an excellent gateway to gain relevant information regarding the Village from any location with a computer. It is our plan that by blogging, we will be able to enhance your online experience with the Village.

If you are interested in being a guest blogger, please let us know at the Village Hall. We are seeking guests to blog about their experience with the Village and highlight their experience with the community.

That’s all for now, but check back soon as we will be working on weekly updates!