Township Talk
The Importance of the 2020 Census (with Joan Gustafson of the Michigan Nonprofit Association)

The Importance of the 2020 Census (with Joan Gustafson of the Michigan Nonprofit Association)

September 6, 2019

On this episode of Township Talk, we are joined by Joan Gustafson of the Michigan Nonprofit Association (MNA). MNA is overseeing the Census 2020 Michigan Nonprofits Campaign, a statewide nonprofit initiative to help ensure a complete count in the next census. The census has the capability to impact Michigan for the next 10 years, from congressional representation to federal funding. Joan speaks about the impact of the census and what townships can do today to prepare and educate their citizens. Find resources and information to help your township at https://becountedmi2020.com/.

The importance of connecting with your legislator

The importance of connecting with your legislator

August 23, 2019

With Michigan’s Legislature set to return to session next month, Township Talk speaks with MTA’s own Judy Allen, our director of government relations, about building relationships with your legislators. It is a crucial connection, especially given the number of bills that impact township government. We dive into how to contact your lawmakers and initiate a conversation, as well as do’s and don’ts to ensure your voice is heard. Judy also shares a sneak peek into issues we can expect to see from Lansing as the legislative session resumes.

Meet Neil Sheridan, MTA’s new executive director

Meet Neil Sheridan, MTA’s new executive director

August 9, 2019

In this episode of Township Talk, our new host Scott Southard talks with MTA’s new executive director, Neil Sheridan. Neil shares with the listeners his experiences that led him to leading Michigan’s largest municipal organization in the state, his perspectives on MTA, and his experiences learning more about Michigan and its townships.

How “Emily” changed your next FOIA request

How “Emily” changed your next FOIA request

July 15, 2019

Last year's "Emily" FOIA request caused headaches for townships throughout the state, but at least one positive change resulted from the chaos. Catherine Mullhaupt, MTA staff attorney, discusses what's new with the Freedom of Information Act, and what it means for your next FOIA request.

Assessing reform and how it will impact townships

Assessing reform and how it will impact townships

June 14, 2019

It's the question on all township board members' lips--how will the assessing reform law impact us, and our assessor? Shila Kiander, Mecosta County equalization director and MTA trainer, covers this issue and more in this week's conversation.

MTA says thanks, and farewell, as Larry Merrill retires

MTA says thanks, and farewell, as Larry Merrill retires

May 31, 2019

As Executive Director Larry Merrill prepares to retire, he looks back on his 39 years with MTA. Hear about how answering a want ad in the Lansing State Journal led to a career spanning nearly four decades, and how townships have evolved over the years.

Local authority and the Legislature

Local authority and the Legislature

May 20, 2019

Already this year, lawmakers have proposed local preemptions on short-term rentals and child foster care facilities--and the legislative term is just getting started. MTA Executive Director Larry Merrill and MTA Government Relations Director Judy Allen drill into the issue of local authority, why it's frequently at risk--and what we can do about it.

Where are they now? Catching up with a Robinson Scholarship recipient

Where are they now? Catching up with a Robinson Scholarship recipient

May 6, 2019

Each year, MTA gives at least one Robert R. Robinson Memorial Scholarship to a college or graduate school student who is preparing for a career serving in local government. In the latest Township Talk, host Bethany Mauger catches up with 2015 scholarship recipient Andrew Dymczyk, who discusses the value of receiving the honor, along with his life-long passion for serving Michigan municipalities which brought him to his current role as manager of DeWitt Charter Township (Clinton Co.).

Cybersecurity for every township

Cybersecurity for every township

April 22, 2019

The March/April Township Focus cover story explored why cybersecurity is a concern for every township--regardless of location or population. We continue the conversation with Michigan State Police cybersecurity experts D/Sgt. Jeff Hoffman and D/Sgt. Matt McLalin, who explain the online threats facing all municipalities--and what you can do to prevent attacks.

Leading your community into the future

Leading your community into the future

April 8, 2019

MTA Executive Director Larry Merrill has been a life-long student of—and is an expert in—leadership in the public sector. What do public leaders do well? How do they succeed? Merrill shares key characteristics of board leadership, building trust and creating a vision—and how it can benefit your township in this discussion.