Letter to the Editor: Drain commissioner candidate explains why office should be part-time.

May 11, 2016

Dear Editor:

I would like to address Mr. Bizon’s statements published on www.oceanacountypress.com concerning my desire to return the office of drain commissioner to part-time, as it had been in the mid-80s. (See letter to the editor here)

While it is true that Manistee, Osceola and Benzie counties have fewer drains than Oceana, it is also

true that Oceana has far fewer drains than the majority of counties with full time drain commissioners.

Mason County, while it has just 130 miles of drains, has designated additional duties to the drain office. These duties include SESC (soil erosion and sedimentation control) permits, a municipal sewage system, quarterly billing for Amber Township, and two closed landfills. Lenawee County has 709 drains, eight lakes, and nine sewer systems. The Lenawee County Drain Commissioner also handles SESC permits. Newaygo County has 300 drains.

Ottawa and Berrien counties have 800 each – 800! Saginaw County has a whopping 1,200 drains! It appears that a full-time drain office is likely warranted when there are a large number of drains and/or duties. According to the drain office, Oceana has 106 drains. This is approximately one-third the number of drains in Newaygo County. As an aside, the county road commission manages drains in approximately 10 counties. I am compiling a complete list of all Michigan counties. It is posted on my web site and will be updated as new data is obtained.

Finally, as I have explained on my web site (www.lorigreen4draincommissioner.com), I understand that the county board of commissioners establishes the duties and compensation of the drain commissioner.

As for Mr. Bizon’s comment about the Manistee County Drain Commissioner wishing to have more hours, apparently the Manistee Board of Commissioners sees it differently.

This coming primary will be a decision between the status quo and a new, fiscally responsible direction.

Oceana County voters will have a chance to voice their opinion on August 2. Please consider your options carefully. After all, voters are the ones who ultimately pay the bill.

Lori Green,


Candidate for Oceana County Drain Commissioner

Editor’s Note: Six Republican candidates vying for the drain commissioner position include: Anthony Collins, Chris Crosby, Geoffrey William Gowin, Lori Green, Jerry Kroll and Michelle Martin. The primary election is set for Tuesday, Aug. 2.

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