89.1 WEMU

Civic Matters: City Council And The Possibility Of Non-Partisan Elections In Ann Arbor And More

Jul 2, 2018

Fireworks in the night sky
Credit Courtesy Photo / publicdomainpictures.net

The 4th of July falls on Wednesday of this week and there are parades, fireworks, and other celebrations of note in Washtenaw County.  That's only part of the conversation between WEMU's David Fair and the CivCityInitiative's Mary Morgan on this edition of "Civic Matters!"

Mary Morgan, executive director of the CivCity Initiative in Ann Arbor

Mary Morgan brings a wealth of experience to the airwaves.  While heading up the CivCity Initiative now, Mary was previously co-founder and publisher of the Ann Arbor Chronicle.  Prior to that, she served as a reporter and editor for the Ann Arbor News when it was a daily, print-edition newspaper.   

THIS WEEK'S TOPICS: 

• The Ann Arbor City Council is in session Monday night.  The agenda includes some items relevant to the Nov. 6 election: 1) A resolution to add "explanatory text" to the citizen-led Nov. 6 ballot proposal asking voters to designate the Library Lot as a civic commons and urban park.  2) A resolution that, if approved,  would ask voters on Nov. 6 to switch to nonpartisan elections for mayor and councilmembers. 

Democracy Dog

• There's one week left before the July 9 voter registration deadline.  If you're not registered by then, you won't be able to vote in the important Aug. 7 primary.  Go to Michigan.gov/vote to check your registration status.

    

 

 

Absentee Ballot Box

• Do you vote absentee?  If so, you might like to be added to the City of Ann Arbor's permanent voter absentee list.  Registered voters who qualify and regularly vote by absentee ballot, including residents over age 60, can sign up to automatically receive absentee ballot applications by mail for each election.  Applications will be sent to those on this permanent list six to eight weeks prior to each election.  Contact the City Clerk's office at 734-794-6140 or cityclerk@a2gov.org for more info or to sign up!

          

 

  

Youth Voter Engagement Day in Ann Arbor
  • July 1 was the official Youth Voter Engagement Day in Ann Arbor, but we should celebrate all year round!  One way to do that is to check out CivicYouth.org.  It's a site operated by Tufts University's Tisch College of Civic Life, and provides practical guides, data and other information about the youth vote.  The Youth-Led Research Resource Page is especially useful.  Locally, UM's Turn Up Turnout is working to boost participation among college-age youth. 

Ann Arbor Champion Tree program
  • Nominations are open for the 2018 Ann Arbor Champion Tree program!  What makes a tree champion-worthy?  It's determined by circumference, height and crown spread (the foliage and branches growing outward from the tree's trunk).  To nominate a tree, fill out this form by July 31.

• Finally, don't forget to check out the July 4th parade in Ann Arbor, Ypsilanti or other communities.  And at 8 p.m., head over to West Park for the Ann Arbor Civic Band concert.  The July 4th theme?  American Celebration.

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— David Fair is the WEMU News Director and host of Morning Edition on WEMU.  You can contact David at 734.487.3363, on twitter @DavidFairWEMU, or email him at dfair@emich.edu