Thank You for Renewing Oakland Township’s Parks Millage

By Joseph Peruzzi, Oakland Township Parks and Recreation Commission

Thank You for Renewing Oakland Township’s Parks Millage

As an Oakland Township Parks Commissioner for the past 16 years, I would like to thank our community’s residents for their resounding support to renew the long standing Parks Millage. Voters approved the millage three to one.

At the same time residents elected a group of seven new parks commissioners dedicated to the continued protection of our valuable public lands and who also supported the millage renewal. Their election was critical as the commission’s four longest term parks commissioners, including myself, will step down this fall after many years of service.

Oakland Township residents established a separate elected parks commission and millage more than 40 years ago in order to set aside valuable lands protected from development and the ongoing urban sprawl so prevalent in this region. Today the township can boast a land bank of more than 1100 acres that is in addition to lands held by the state of Michigan’s Bald Mountain Park.  Acquiring such acreage came thanks to property owner donations and leveraging state and federal grant monies with township taxpayer funds.

It has been the believe of the majority of parks commissioners and residents in Oakland Township that public land is a valuable resource deserving protection to ensure the ability of citizens to experience nature through recreation. Oakland Township’s parks currently feature a wide variety of walking and bike trails, a sled hill second to none in the tri-county area, kayaking, canoeing, picnic pavilion, soccer fields, archery range and half court basketball.

Many parks remain undeveloped, but all are open year-around thanks to a well developed network of trails. Oakland Township is also responsible for maintaining the more than 5 miles of Paint Creek Trail that runs through the heart of the community.

The majority of the township’s 17,000 residents understand the unique nature of property in their community. That rural, up north feeling continues to be an everyday experience for our residents and most aim to keep it that way as a legacy for our children and grandchildren. That is why I began my service as a parks commissioner many years ago, and that is why as I step down I am confident that tradition will continue.


Joseph Peruzzi

Oakland Township Parks and Recreation Commission


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  1. Cam Mannino says

    Thank you, Joe, for your years of service, along with Colleen Barkham, Dave Mackley and Alice Tomboulian. Together you have created a nature legacy for residents of the township. The amazing park system and protected natural areas are not only beautiful, but also increase the value of property in our township. Parks and open land are the reasons most of us live here! And the four of you have been visionary, careful stewards for, I believe, an aggregate total of over 100 years! Thank you to the voters who supported the renewal millage for recognizing what a treasure they have in Oakland Township Parks, to the newly-elected commissioners who value that treasure and will strive to preserve it and to the four of you retiring commissioners for creating and nurturing it all these years.

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