May 14 2024

City Council Unanimously Approves Critical Millage Proposals for Nov. Ballot


At yesterday's May 13 regular meeting, Ferndale City Council unanimously approved two important proposals slated for the November 5, 2024 General Election. These proposals address vital funding issues for the City's General Fund services as well as critical public safety and recreation facilities needs.

The first proposal seeks voters' authorization for an 8.586 Headlee Override millage. This measure aims to reset the city's General Operating millage to the Charter-authorized limit of 20.0000 mills. The proposal involves replacing the expiring 2015 operating millage valued at 4.2808 mills, scheduled to lapse in 2025. Consequently, this would result in a net increase of 4.3048 mills from the current tax year's millage levy.

The second proposal earmarks 4 mills of this increase specifically for the construction and maintenance of essential facilities, including those vital for police, fire, and recreation services. For this allocation to take effect, voters must approve a charter amendment. This amendment would ensure that the allocated funds are dedicated solely to these purposes indefinitely.

If approved, each millage is subject to annual rollbacks per the Headlee Amendment. 

Both proposals are in line with the recommendations of the 2024 Resident Finance Committee. In their report, the committee emphasized the importance of restoring the city's operating millage to its charter limit, citing the necessity to support and enhance essential General Fund services. Their primary focus was on retaining and attracting high-quality personnel for key City departments such as Police, Fire, and Public Works. Additionally, they underscored the urgent need to address outdated public safety facilities and proposed the construction of a new City-owned recreation facility at Martin Road Park.


Delve into the Finance Committee, including watching meetings, reviewing discussion materials, and reading the comprehensive final report.

Request a printed copy of the Finance Committee Report or the Facilities Task Force Report—we'll deliver it right to your house.

Want an up-close look at the facilities investigated by the Finance and Facilities Committees? Register to attend a pre-scheduled tour of our Police and Fire Departments. 

Proposal A and the Headlee Amendment are complex; this presentation by resident and Finance Committee Chair Quinn Zeagler easily breaks it all down. 

For additional questions, reach out to us via email at