Oakland County Commission District 13

Choose one candidate. Oakland County commissioners serve two-year terms and receive an annual salary of $33,717.

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  • Candidate picture

    Michelle Dinardo

  • Candidate picture

    Marcia Gershenson

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Biographical Information

What do you think county’s three most pressing problems are, and where would you start to solve them?

Do you support the proposed millage to fund a regional transit system? Why or why not?

What, in your view, should be the county and the region’s transportation priorities?

What is your position on outfitting the county sheriff’s department with body cameras?

Do you support the legalization of recreational marijuana?

Has the county taken appropriate steps to prevent gun violence?

With reports showing Michigan behind on education, what role if any do you see the county taking to improve education?

What should Oakland County do to fix its aging infrastructure?

What is the county’s role in assisting financially struggling cities?

Which county-provided services need the most improvement, and what suggestions can you offer for making them better?

What are the county's biggest budgetary concerns, and how would you address them?

Where do you stand on settling refugees in Michigan, and Oakland County in particular?

What will you do to improve the lives of low-income residents in Oakland County?

What would you do to improve the county’s workforce development efforts?

Do you support and will you appear at campaign events with your party’s presidential nominee?

Have you ever filed for personal bankruptcy? If so, explain.

Have you ever been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor? If so, explain.

City of residence Farmington Hills
Age 48
Family Two children, ages 8 and 12.
Education B.S. Financial Administration from Indiana University
Professional Experience Employed for 23 years at Griffin Portfolio Management Corp., a SEC registered investment advisory firm as Compliance and Operations Administrator.
Political Experience Member of the 14th District Executive Republican Committee, Immediate past Treasurer and current board member of the Greater West Bloomfield Republican Club, Precinct Delegate and worked on multiple campaigns for Republican candidates.
Maintaining a balanced budget with fiscal responsibility. Keep spending in line with revenue. This is crucial to maintain our AAA bond rating, which saves residents thousands of dollars in interest payments. And this has to be done without raising taxes on residents. Allot funds for what is needed to best benefit residents of Oakland County and not special interests. I would also work with Michigan Water Authority to reduce our water rates.

Though I'd love to see a regional transit system in the Metro area, I do not support the proposed high millage to fund the one being proposed. We are already paying a high millage rate for the SMART system, which the RT system will depend on to get passengers to and from it. What if residents decide they cannot continue paying high millage rates for two transportation systems and eventually vote down the SMART system? Plus it's not clear the proposed millage increase will sufficiently support this RT system. Other cities use sales tax increases to fund their public transportation systems. And businesses benefiting the most from this RT system should help pay.
Make the SMART system more efficient and reduce operating costs. We constantly see large buses driving around empty or with less than a handful of passengers. The use of appropriate size vehicles should be used to meet the limited ridership demand in these areas. This will make the bus system more economically feasible.
I do not believe the benefits would outweigh the costs of body cameras. While they can be instrumental in some situations, the cars have cameras which are sufficient most of the time.
Candidate did not provide a response.
Candidate did not provide a response.
There currently is not much of a role the county can take in the education system. It would only add another level of bureaucracy. If the U.S. Department of Education could be eliminated, giving full control to the states, then counties could instrumentally assist the states in addressing education challenges on a district by district basis.
Candidate did not provide a response.
Candidate did not provide a response.
Falling revenues and increasing costs. This can only be addressed by spending control.
If the refugees go through the full vetting process, I am ok with them settling in Michigan.
Candidate did not provide a response.
Candidate did not provide a response.
City of residence Bloomfield Township
Age 65
Family Husband Ken Robinson Son Drew Gershenson
Education BA University of Michigan '71
Vehicles owned Chevy volt
Professional Experience Secondary English teacher
Political Experience Activist and county commissioner
Race/ethnicity Caucasian
Incumbent? yes
The three top priorities are keeping our drinking and recreational waters clean and safe, fixing our aging sewer and water infrastructure and repairing our roads. I have co-sponsored a resolution to designate funds for elementary schools and day care centers to test their water. Along with testing the water, we need to begin fix the necessary water and sewer infrastructure repairs. In addition, I supported a new fund to help our local communities fix their roads. The condition of our roads continues to be a major problem for residents in our communities.
This item is on the ballot and the voters will decide if they are willing to pay an average of $100. a year to support regional transit. I personally do support the proposed Millage to fund a regional transit system. Oakland County is part of a region that needs to be connected. We must provide safe and reliable transportation to all residents. Transit is an economic development tool that is an incentive for young people to settle in an area. Transit will also help our seniors live independent lives and potentially lower dependency on automobiles. This is an issue that is long overdue to resolve . Transit will help make our region more desirable and successful.
I support all modes of transportation options for our region. I believe every community should be participating in our bus system. Smart buses offer valuable services for our senior population, residents going to work and school and our county parks. In order for our region to continue to grow and prosper we must break down the transportation barriers that have isolated us for too long.
I think body cameras would protect residents and police officers. There has been so much attention to conflicts between citizens and law enforcement over recent years. Cameras should help to provide details of encounters that are often undocumented. We must do every thing we can to break this cycle of violence. Agencies need to find creative ways to share the costs associated with cameras . I would propose that multiple entities, such as the County and local communities join to help police departments fund these cameras.
This is an issue which came before the voters and they approved it. I support the will of the voters.
I am a co-founder of a gun safety group in our County. Our goal is to assess the safety of our County residents and implement changes where necessary. We recently held our annual gun lock give away. We also have been working with local retailers to give a discount to residents that buy gun safes. We have produced several Public Service announcements promoting gun safety. We also met with a sampling of school superintendents to better understand school security. There is much more work that needs to be done to promote responsible gun ownership. I intend to continue my efforts to keep our community safe.
Although County Commissioners do not oversee our schools, as a former teacher, I am greatly concerned with the standard of education in our community. I have supported funding early childhood eye, hearing and dental examinations. We should continue and expand our partnership with the Oakland Intermediate School district Safe Schools anti bullying program. Also, It is imperative that all children have access to affordable early education.
We need to use the multi million dollar budget surplus to identify and prioritize fixing our County's aging infrastructure. We must work with our local communities to understand and assess their infrastructure problems. This problem will only get worse if we do not start systematically identifying problem areas and provide the necessary funding for repairs.
Our County has a triple A bond rating and a strong financial team . I think communities should be able to request advice from our financial team. It is the County's responsibility to help all our locals understand and take action to correct their financial dilemmas. We also need to continue to push our legislators to allocate more money to help the areas they represent.
The condition of our roads continues to be a major concern in our County. Commissioners have been working to strengthen the funding that is allocated to our local roads. We need to advocate for more County dollars to help communities with their road improvement funding. This needs to continue until the state figures out how to provide much needed assistance. Ending homelessness for our Veterans is another Priority. It is important to work with our Veterans Department and other agencies to ensure our Vets are treated with respect when they come home. We also need to encourage legislators to provide more money for our mental health system.
The County financial team has successfully navigated us through the recent economic downturn. We have a 3 year rolling budget that has provided the guidance that gave us the budget surplus we have now. It is imperative that we use that surplus to make investments in our citizens, protect the most vulnerable among us and expand businesses that promote economic security for everyone,
When my family came to the United States, we were welcomed. Most of us come from families that immigrated to our Country and worked hard to assimilate. Immigrants have helped build America into the power it is today. I stand with those who are seeking to build a new life and contribute to the health and welfare in Oakland County.
I am an advocate for the County's services and departments which help low income residents. Our Health department focuses on providing resources to strengthen children's lives who live in poverty. Our Community Home Improvement department offers much needed assistance to struggling families. I will continue to publicize services that are available in my local communities and vote to maintain the funding these departments require.
The County has a strong workforce development team. They need to continue programming for entreprepreneurs, small business owners and their micro loan program. In addition, as a founder of the Women's Alliance for Oakland County, the County must partner with local groups whose focus is on job training. The Women's Alliance provides guidance, education and programs to promote job skills. Small businesses will help stabilize our local economies and must be supported and encouraged.
Yes. I am extremely proud to stand with the first woman candidate in America. She is the most qualified candidate and I look forward to her leadership .