Village discusses dock issue

Marie Havenga • Jul 21, 2015 at 11:29 AM

The Grand River Greenway nonmotorized path project that was completed in November 2011 included plans to build eight docks at Mill Point Park. When costs for the Grand River Greenway were running higher than expected last September, Village Council voted to move five existing floating docks from Tanglefoot Park to Mill Point Park and build three.

Council had hoped to install fewer than eight docks to help offset the additional $80,000 needed for environmental costs and longer-than-expected helical pilings along the boardwalk, but state trust fund officials – who kicked in $465,000 toward the $1.2 million project – said they could not alter the number of docks originally submitted on the village's grant application.

Moving the five surplus docks saved the village about $55,000 in new dock construction costs.

At the time, the docks were not rented; but this season, Tanglefoot Park Manager Stan Johnson said there is a waiting list of four people who want to rent dock space.

The village charges $250 per month, or $900 a season, to rent a slip at Tanglefoot Park.

The docks at Mill Point Park will be used for the annual Spring Lake Wooden Boat Show and as no-cost day slips for visitors who attend park events or want to shop or dine downtown.

Council earlier this week discussed moving some or all of the docks back to Tanglefoot Park — but Shamika Askew-Storay, grant coordinator for the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, said that is not possible because the trust fund grant terms call for eight docks.

Despite claims from Village Councilman Marv VandenBosch that the village is trying to “defraud” the state by seeking reimbursement for the five relocated docks, Askew-Storay said she has seen no reimbursement paperwork from the village for the pre-existing docks.

To read more of this story, see today’s print or e-edition of the Grand Haven Tribune.

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