Dorr OKs sewer, water for sustainable business park

This is a prototype of the material for roofing, celings and siding that will be manufactured at the sustainable business park in Dorr Township.

Plans for the sustainable business park in Dorr Township took another step forward Thursday night when the Township Board unanimously approved the extension of sewer and water from Byron Township.

The park, which will be located in the northeast section of the township, promises economic development, 130 jobs and local tax revenue from its proposed 250-acre site. There, anchor tenant Continuus Materials plans to manufacture siding, roofing and ceiling parts from discarded plastic glass and other so-called recycling items that still otherwise wind up in landfills.

The project eventually includes closing the Kent County landfill and opening the business park to provide a place to make things that can be useful rather than wasteful.

Consultant Rick Chapla, who told the Dorr Planning Commission Tuesday night that the Kent County Department of Public Works, which owns the land, hopes to get out of the landfill business entirely.

“It’s a win for all of us if this works out the way we want it to,” said Township Supervisor Jeff Miling.

Chapla said plans are for the anchor tenant to get things up and running by the start of the year 2025.

In other business Thursday evening, the Township Board:

  • Fielded a complaint from Trustee Chandler Stanton that about $8,250 was missing from bank statements and the situation was allowed to continue for several months. United Bank was able to recover about $3,400, which was returned to the township.

Treasurer Myrna Marr, who took over the job only last December, explained that the township account was hacked and she and Clerk Debbie Sewers are working with the auditor to correct the problem.

Trustee John Tuinstra said the past treasurer did not keep up on reconciliation of bank accounts, contributing to the trouble.

Stanton insisted the board packet for the next meeting include the bank statements from July and August. He, Tuinstra, Sewers and Dan Weber voted in favor, Marr, Miling and Trustee Pat Champion were opposed.

  • Heard a presentation from Mark Witte of Allegan County Community Mental Health, asking that some of the money Dorr is slated to get from the American Recovery Protection Act (ARPA) be set aside to help the agency purchase the old Shopko building in Allegan to house the service.

Penny Post

Penny Post, the township’s representative on the Ambulance Board, vouched for the service, pointing out that because Allegan County doesn’t have an appropriate facility, ambulances and hospitals have to send patients out of county and even out of state.

  • Heard from Post that she is resigning from the Ambulance Board effective in December because of the press of business with the hospital. Fire Chief Gary Fordham remains as the township’s one rep.
  • Learned from Dorr Parks Commission member Michael Grafton that vandalism continues to plague the parks and a camera would be desirable to cut down on the trouble.

Grafton added that plans are moving forward on establishing a dog park.

  • Agreed to pay a total match of $358,939 to secure a $600,000 federal grant to reconstruct 138th Avenue from 21 Street to 24th Street.
  • Was told by Fordham at the Dorr Fire Department already has matched the number of calls from all of last year. He said there were 26 requests for assistance on Aug. 11 alone during the violent summer storm.

COVER PHOTO: Township Board members (from left) Myrna Marr, Jeff Miling and Debbie Sewers watch Rick Chapla demonstrate the material the sustainable business park anchor tenant will manufacture.


  • “Trustee John Tuinstra said the past treasurer did not keep up on reconciliation of bank accounts, contributing to the trouble.”

    Why is this man (Jim Martin) still employed by the township?

    “Stanton insisted the board packet for the next meeting include the bank statements from July and August. He, Tuinstra, Sewers and Dan Weber voted in favor, Marr, Miling and Trustee Pat Champion were opposed.”

    Why would Marr, Miling and Champion vote against transparency? Are they trying to hide something? How long have they known about the $8,250.00 missing. Is the board protecting Martin? To many unanswered questions…


    • John, It is alleged the funds began being withdrawn in March and continued for months. Only a small part of the funds were able to be recovered, likely due to the untimely complaint by Dorr Township after “noticing” it missing several months later.

  • I hear it is alleged, that the funds were drawn from the Dorr Township United Bank Account and then used for online sports gambling. Months and months went by and more and more funds were drawn. Then the outside Audiitor immediately noticed it while looking at the bank statements. How could this happen for months without the Treasurer noticing? Well… how and why? Most are asking the questions.

  • Why did it take several months for the missing money to be discovered? This should have been discovered with each bank reconciliation where there was missing money. If the account was not reconciled WHY NOT? This is basic accounting. And if was not done for several months, shame on the treasurer and supervisor. This should be part of the monthly board oversite. The treasurers report should include this every month! If the treasurer is not doing the job what actions can be taken to insure that they do their job? Isn’t the supervisor supposed to oversee what is happening? This is a big red flag as to how the township is functioning.

  • Online gambling? Are you kidding me?
    If that is indeed the case, why is the township treasurer still in office?
    That is stealing from the township treasury!

  • Editor, you usually love to shine a spotlight on the chaos of Dorr Township yet you buried the big story this month. Leaves one to ponder why? Perhaps because Jeff does not come out looking so good in this instance?
    Why in the world are Miling, Marr and Champion opposed to transparency regarding our townships (the tax payers) bank statements? This is quite concerning. It does not lead to a culture of trust.
    If Jim Martin was not always thorough in his reconciliation of our accounts what is he still doing working for us? And it is appears he is at the offices at all hours of the night. What is going on?

  • What a shame. What a damn shame. Why would anyone with reason vote no? Moreover how could this happen for many months without being noticed? Where and what is the Supervisor Jeff Milling doing? Any reply?

  • Ah!!!! Citizens of Dorr Township, remember when the uproar was because the Township was run by the ” good old boys and girls club”. You couldn’t vote them out of office fast enough .
    You slowly elected the “wolves ” in “sheep’s “clothing. Now that the questionable situations are starting to surface…just maybe those ” good old boys and girls ” were more trustworthy than what you put into office now.
    It is quite entertaining for me a residence of 54 years to sit back any watch. A once thriving rural community being turned into junkyards ( excuse me recycling centers) , loss of business because of lack of local support, agriculture properties turned into housing developments, wetlands being drained , all in the name of progress.
    I can not fault those in the know as to what is happening. A sane person in Dorr Township would never run for a position on this Board. We know full well the “corner” these persons have gotten themselves in. Yes, it may cost us a few tax dollars, but watching them scramble to get out is worth the price.

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