Meridian Township Officials Update Residents on Township’s Response to COVID-19
MERIDIAN TOWNSHIP - Meridian Township Manager Frank L. Walsh gave the community an update on the COVID-19 crisis with a live press conference this afternoon at 2pm, along with Police Chief Ken Plaga, Fire Chief Mike Hamel, and Deputy Director Derek N. Perry in attendance to update residents.
Chief Plaga spoke and let everyone know that the Meridian Township Police Department is still there to serve the community and says, “We are very fortunate to have our police force at 100 percent and have had no one fall ill. Our thoughts and prayers go out to other organizations and agencies that have struggled with members in their organizations coming down with COVID-19.”
Chief Plaga would also like to point out to residents to keep a vigilant eye and says if you see something suspicious, please do not hesitate to call the police department or 9-1-1 so they can check on situations that may be suspicious. Plaga also mentions Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s "Stay Home, Stay Safe" executive order and says, “Do not go out unless it’s to get medicine, groceries, or things that are essential to take care of your home,” and thanked residents for their compliance during this time.
Chief Hamel says there hasn’t been anyone in the department that tested positive for COVID-19 and that the fire department is happy to respond and support the community as best they can. He says, “Since day one of this, our goal is to do everything we can to protect the township from this event and get through it as best we can and we will prevail.” Hamel discussed the illegal burns that have happened within the Township because there is a state wide ban on burning, and also states that, “A person can still have a campfire, but could not burn rubbish, building types of materials, or wood. You can have your campfires, but that is it."
The Deputy Director of Meridian Township, Derek N. Perry, thanked residents for their cooperation in keeping sanitation wipes out of the toilets and says it does have a really big impact when people don’t flush those. Flush only what is within the guidelines. Perry also let residents know that if they're having issues with their water or sanitary sewer system after hours, residents can contact an emergency after hours phone number and also mentions, "If you try to reach the department of public works, you can email us and it is monitored by several public works employees."
Perry states that the Township has suspended all water shut-offs to residents and says, “If you need your water established, please contact us and we will get that restored so you have water in your home.” Meridian Township Supervisor Ron Styka announced an extension of thirty days on residents bill payment for water and sewer and will receive a note in the upcoming water bill in regards to that, states Perry. The Deputy Director also mentions that the Township critical infrastructure program will begin its road, water, and repair projects in the coming month and adds, “If you have any questions, reach out, that’s what we’re here for.”
Township Manager Frank Walsh thanked all the Township officials, as well as first responders again and says, "We take care and compassion out of our 43,000 residents seriously. I personally want to thank the men and women in our fire and police department and our paramedics on the front lines." Walsh says the volume of calls has decreased since residents are heeding the state issue. "A number of departments have lost members across the state realize that and I want to thank them for their service to the community,” says Township Manager Walsh.
Manager Walsh wants to remind everyone that you're not alone, and never will be throughout this and says, “We're here to serve you, we have been, we will be and continue to be. Reach out to us if you need something and we will continue to what we’ve been doing and serving with pride, passion, and performance everyday.”