Higgins trustee challenges clerk
Veteran Higgins Township Clerk Terry Morley staved off a Republican primary challenge from Frances Allen-Dawson, but must face Democrat Mary Krauss in the general election. Krauss is leaving her post as a township trustee.
Krauss attended Michigan State University and served 10 years as a computer operator in the U.S. Army. She has lived in Higgins Township since 1988. She has volunteered for such organizations as Hospice, Roscommon Metropolitan Park Authority, VFW bingo and breakfast and Habitat for Humanity. She is active in Messiah Lutheran Church, Roscommon.
A Higgins Township Trustee since 2004, Krauss said, "I... want to take a more active role in our township government. I was the Village of Roscommon Clerk for approximately 12 years prior to moving to township government. During that time, I attended the Municipal Clerks Institute and completed three of the four years offered for education of clerks throughout Michigan. Over the past four years, I have worked at a Lutheran camping facility in Fairview as the office manager. In this position, I have continued working with budgets, state regulations, audits and general secretarial skills."
Krauss said among her goals as township clerk would be to "work with other local organizations to make Higgins Township a destination of choice for tourism and business and improve use of available web technology to include posting of minutes and proposed meeting agendas on line." She also pledged to "provide open avenues of communication with residents and other elected officials by both electronic means and personal contact, work with other township officials to expand business hours and pursue avenues of funding which would include grants and donations to use toward improving facilities within Higgins Township without placing further financial burdens on residents."
Morley, 57, has been in office 21 years. She formerly was a secretary for Gaylor Insurance. She is a graduate of Kirtland Community College and has lived in Higgins Township 27 years. Morley is a member of the Roscommon Extenders and headed a committee to purchase gifts for underprivileged children through the Roscommon-Higgins Lake Lions Club. She also has planted flowers in Roscommon Village.
If she is reelected, Morley said she hopes to "continue to make sure the tax dollars are spent in a way that benefits all Higgins Township residents" and "work toward the compost and recycling center to be open every day, all day, with no set hours so that the working person can have full use of the site." She pledges to "continue to educate myself in ways that will help me do the best job I can in the areas of elections, zoning and planning, accounting and working with other local units of government." Morley said she also supports improvements to the township hall and hopes to "get more involved in community events."
Unopposed nominees for another term are Supervisor June M. Karjalainen, Treasurer Janae Ostling and Constable Robert Waterman. All are Republicans who face no Democratic challengers.
With Krauss running for clerk and Trustee Laurie A. Granlund not seeking another term, Higgins will have two new trustees. William E. Curnalia and former Denton Township Trustee Ron Peters, both Republicans, have no Democratic competition.