Town meetings set for Tuesday

by Tom Coombe -

For the last decade or so, it’s been very, very quiet on the township election front.
That changes this year, with both Morse and Fall Lake residents having contested races for town board seats.
The elections set the stage for a busy Tuesday, with voting during the day and grassroots government to follow as townships around the area and across the state hold their annual town meetings.
In local town halls, residents will set their own local property tax levies and vote on various other matters associated with township government.
Annual meetings take place in Morse, Fall Lake, Eagles Nest and Stony River townships, and all but Eagles Nest also have elections that day.
Eagles Nest residents will gather at their town hall at 7 p.m. while those in the remaining townships must wait until 8 p.m., when polls close in elections at Morse, Fall Lake and Stony River.
While recent elections have been sleepy affairs, with incumbents running and winning without opposition, two local town board members face challenges this time around.
In Morse, longtime supervisor Len Cersine is opposed by Terry Cooper, while Fall Lake’s Craig Seliskar squares off against Timothy Johnson (see related story).
Once ballots are counted in both Morse and Fall Lake, township meetings will be convened.
A tax levy for 2020 is decided at each annual meeting, and residents will also set a township budget for the following year.
Morse Township has kept its property tax levy flat for several years and that figures to be the case again, as town board members have recommended no change to the existing levy.
Voters in each township will elect a moderator, and the meetings give any resident who attends a chance to weigh in on local government.
The annual meetings are unique to township government. Cities have no similar event and decisions related to tax levies, budgets and other governmental matters are left exclusively to elected officials.
Polls open at noon in Morse and Fall Lake town halls. Eagles Nest holds its township elections in the fall to coincide with general elections.