Candidate Q&A: Amanda Nimke, Sylvan Township Clerk
Note to readers: The Sun Times News has made its media outlet available to candidates running for public office. Articles published do not reflect an endorsement by the STN. Submissions are from candidates who responded within our guidelines. In order to be as fair and equitable as possible, candidates can submit their responses to four basic questions.
- Who are you?
- Why are you running?
- What issues do you think are important?
- Why should we vote for you?
Candidate’s responses are printed as submitted.
Who are you?
I am a lifelong resident of Sylvan Township and graduated from Chelsea High School. I attended Michigan State University where I graduated with a BS in Microbiology. For the past 20 years, I have owned and operated a small business in the Chelsea area. In 2016 I was blessed with an opportunity to move back to the farm where I grew up, and I live there today.
I was appointed as Sylvan Township’s Clerk in June 2021. Since then, I have worked diligently to fulfill the statutory duties the office requires. I have also worked with officials, staff, and residents to advocate for smart policy decisions that protect the integrity of our communities, support fiscal responsibility, and address the complicated sewer and water issues to ensure utility rates are stabilized and reduce taxpayer burden of the water system.
I have served as Sylvan’s representative on the Washtenaw County Broadband Task Force since August 2020. Our collaborative efforts have succeeded in securing federal funding to bring broadband to every residence in Sylvan Township and the County. This initiative will make Washtenaw County the first to achieve 100% broadband coverage in the State.
Why are you running?
I became involved in local government in 2019 when a development proposal threatened to undermine my community. It was through this experience that I realized the need and significance of strong resident voices. I also understood the importance of township officials who listen closely to residents and promote policies that protect our communities and our tax dollars, and utilize strategic planning policies to support local assets.
What issues do you think are the most important?
High-speed internet is no longer a luxury. It is a necessity. From residents working remotely, students taking online classes, or virtual healthcare appointments, we need reliable high-speed internet for every household in Sylvan Township. It had been exciting to work together with other representatives to bring this important service to every home in the township.
There is broad consensus across the township to maintain the rural character of Sylvan. It takes careful planning, with sound policies and initiatives to ensure local government doesn’t undermine the things residents love most about their communities. Making sure our zoning protects existing communities is crucial to maintaining them. Weighing development costs and promoting growth where you want it and not where you don’t is fundamental to successful rural planning.
Sylvan Township faces unique challenges due to the underused sewer and water district. The system was built to protect the lakes and provide services to a higher density district next to the City of Chelsea. It was not intended to spread beyond those areas, to maintain the rural character across the rest of the township. We need to focus higher density growth adjacent to the City of Chelsea, to support the infrastructure that exists and reduce tax-payer burden.
Why should we vote for you?
As an elected official I understand that my primary duty is to the tax-payers I represent. Every policy I support should focus on how it will directly impact you. As your representative, I need to find ways to protect and improve your quality of life and be responsible with your tax dollars.
To be successful, I have spent many hours on doorsteps listening to the needs of residents and asking officials from the past to help me understand our history, so I can build on those goals and avoid unintended consequences.
With your support, I will continue to listen to your needs first and foremost and advocate for policies that protect your communities and taxes.
To learn more, visit my website at: amandaforsylvan.com
Image: Amanda Nimke. Courtesy of Amanda Nimke.