From Presidential Elections to Charter Amendments, Birmingham's Year in Politics

From presidential politics to battles over Birmingham's new liquor license policy, we've got your round-up of the most important political stories from 2012.

Whoever said "it's all politics" must have been talking about 2012 — or at least, 2012 in Birmingham.

With the year beginning and ending with a major election, to a dozen protests and new city ordinances in between, 2012 was a big year for politics in Birmingham.

Here's the stories that were getting people's attention and getting them to the polls this year:

Election 2012

Nov. 8: City to Move Forward 'As Best It Can' After Charter Amendment Loses at the Polls

City Manager Bob Bruner said despite the loss, he doesn't expect a similar amendment to go on the ballot any time soon.

Nov. 7:

During the Nov. 6 general election, Bloomfield Hills Republican Mike McCready took the 44th District State House seat and Shelley Goodman Taub was elected to the Oakland County Board of Commissioners.

Nov. 7: Reactions as Voters Say No to Michigan Ballot Proposals

Unions were disappointed. Canadians were thrilled. All in all, reactions were varied as Michigan voters shot down all six statewide ballot proposals.

Aug. 30: Bloomfield Hills in the Crossfire in New Anti-Romney Ad

MoveOn.org, a liberal PAC, debuted a new mini-documentary titled "The Man From Bloomfield Hills" in late August, attacking the Birmingham-Bloomfield area as well as GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney.

Aug. 24: Mitt Romney Stops in Birmingham Friday Ahead of CBS Broadcast

GOP presumptive nominee Mitt Romney was in Birmingham in August, touring the town and giving an interview for CBS Evening News.

Aug. 8: Mike McCready Wins GOP Primary for 40th District in State House

The Bloomfield Hills City Commissioner rose above a crowded field to win with 32 percent of the vote in the Aug. 7 primary.

Aug. 7:

The Detroit Institute of Arts millage passed in Macomb, Oakland and Wayne counties in August.

April 18:

Although the president visited Bingham Farms in April for a high-profile fundraiser, nearby Bloomfield Hills and Birmingham are the top two fundraising cities for Republican candidate Mitt Romney.

Feb. 28: Mitt Romney Wins in Birmingham During February Primary

Birmingham selected presidential nominee Mitt Romney during the February primary, casting 2,660 votes for the Bloomfield Hills native ahead of 662 votes for Rick Santorum.

Feb. 27:

A panel of national political journalists discussed Michigan's presidential primary and the fate of the Republican Party at the Adcraft Club of Detroit's annual meeting Monday.

Feb. 8: Birmingham School Board Member to Run for State House Seat

Republican Robert Lawrence threw his hat into the ring to run against County Commissioner Dave Potts in the August primary in his bid for Chuck Moss' seat in the State House.


Elected officials

Dec. 17: L. Brooks Patterson Sworn In for Sixth Term as County Executive

The 73-year-old Patterson is looking ahead to next four years after taking the oath of office.

Nov. 13: George Dilgard Elected Birmingham's Newest Mayor

City commissioners elected George Dilgard the city's mayor for 2012-13, while Scott Moore will serve as mayor pro tem.

Oct. 2: Toxicology Report: No Alcohol Found in Patterson's Blood at Time of Crash

Hoping to put an end to innuendo, Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson and his longtime driver, James Cram, released limited medical records Tuesday afternoon.

Feb. 17:

Gov. Rick Snyder spoke at the Townsend Hotel in mid-February and said if Michigan wants to succeed in coming years, they must be focus on 'relentless positive action.'

Jan. 18:

In his 2012 State of the State speech, Snyder also proposes rapid bus lines for Metro Detroit commuters.


From City Hall

Aug. 29:

The Birmingham City Commission decided that existing businesses will also need to obtain the same permit when they want to make major changes.

June 27: Birmingham Bans Fireworks Except on National Holidays

Mayor says enforcing laws is time-consuming for local police while a city commissioner predicts more accidents in light of a newly relaxed Michigan law.

May 22: Birmingham City Commission Approves 2012-13 Budget

The updated budget includes lower-than-projected taxable values and more than $200,000 in additional revenue from a police dispatch service-sharing agreement.

May 1:

Baldwin Public Library's 2012-13 budget will be one to consider as a joint city committee continues to study potential renovations plans for the library building.

April 6: City Manager Says AAA Rating a Sign of Strong Financial Management

Fitch Ratings agency reaffirmed the AAA status on Birmingham's five general obligations bonds in 2012, a sign the city manages its finances well.

March 2: City Clarifies Rules About Drinking at Birmingham's Golf Courses

Alcohol is not allowed at any city-owned park and property — with the exception of the golf courses, the newly refined city code reads.

Feb. 27: City Commission Renews All of Birmingham's Liquor Licenses

Despite concerns raised by the Pierce Street Condo Association about Townhouse, the commission renewed all Class B and Class C liquor licenses in February.

Feb. 17: Resident Outcry Helps Spur Defeat of 3-Lane Plan for East Maple Road

The Birmingham City Commission voted down a plan that would reconfigure East Maple Road east of Adams from four to three lanes after more than 50 residents packed the a City Commission meeting in mid-February.

Jan. 30: City Sends Plans for Senior Millage Back to Drawing Board

The Birmingham City Commission asked for more information on a proposed senior services millage during its annual long-range planning meeting Jan. 21.


Battles in Lansing

Dec. 18: Snyder Vetoes Bill That Would Have Allowed Guns in Schools

The bill would have allowed concealed weapons in gun-free zones such as schools and sports arenas.

Dec. 12:

The bills were signed into law by Gov. Rick Snyder in mid-December.

Dec. 4: School Board vs. State Law: Who Has the Final Say on Guns in Schools?

After a Birmingham parent brought a gun to an elementary school in early October, district officials say they're not changing policies banning guns on school property despite conflicting laws and court rulings.

Nov. 30: Birmingham School Board Formally Opposes State Education Overhaul

School board resolution echoes comments at Royal Oak informational meeting with Oakland Schools Superintendent Vickie Markavitch.

Aug. 9: Charges to Be Filed Against 4 of Thaddeus McCotter's Former Staffers in Election Fraud Case

The charges were announced in August by Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette.

July 19: Should You Be Allowed to Openly Carry Guns in Libraries?

The Baldwin Public Library Board requested local lawmakers add libraries to the list of places where openly carrying firearms is not allowed.

June 15: Poll: Should Lawmaker be Barred from Speaking after 'Vagina' Remark?

Rep. Lisa Brown of West Bloomfield referenced her Jewish faith and anatomy while arguing against legislation restricting abortion in June.


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