How the current Saugatuck road reconstruction indebtedness
could be handled following consolidation.
If Douglas Councilwoman, Lisa Greenwood (or Mayor Pro Tem, Martha Hoexter; see "For the Record" below), really is confused about "what to do with... the debt that Saugatuck... has for its road repairs," we can educate her... with the facts. This Saugatuck debt is the subject of an old rumor (#18 on this site) first perpetrated by the leader of a group opposing consolidation. Such indebtedness can be easily accommodated when consolidation passes. Referring to the legal discussion below, one approach could be to create the equivalent of a "special assessment district." In this case, it would be the entire area of Saugatuck--and the property tax payers in that district are the only ones who pay.
Another approach might take advantage of the experience of the proposed (but not completed) 2012 disincorporation effort of the Village of Onekama into Onekama Township. There, proponents found a way to segregate bonded indebtedness for sewer upgrades such that only those connected to the sewer system would pay.
People of goodwill can clearly find ways to ensure the Saugatuck road debt remains the responsibility of the Saugatuck residents who authorized it.
The desired result for the City of Saugatuck Douglas would be no change: former Saugatuck taxpayers would continue to pay their road debt, while former Douglas residents would not.