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News & Info from The CivCity Initiative

Civic March Madness:  Polls, Police & Pot!

Got your attention? Here are three ways you can take local civic action this week!

1. Find at least one person you know who isn't registered to vote and help them register! To vote in the May 2 special election, you must be registered by Monday, April 3 – ONE WEEK FROM TODAY!

2. Sign up for the Washtenaw Citizens Police Academy. (And debate whether or where to put the apostrophe in "Citizens"!) The deadline to register is April 28.

3. Learn about the ballot initiative by the Michigan Coalition to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol. The group hopes to put a statewide proposal on the November 2018 ballot.

Read on for info about these items and more, then go forth and be civic! (And if you missed previous Civic To-Do Lists, catch up on the "Get Involved" section of CivCity's website.)

WE'LL SAY IT AGAIN: Monday, April 3 is the deadline to register to vote in the May 2 special election. Click here for details on how to register. And check out CivCity's for info about the ballot proposal to fund school infrastructure.


One More Time: Deadline Looming for Voter Registration

Yes, of course you're registered to vote. You're a sentient citizen, right?

But are you sure all of your friends, family, neighbors and co-workers are registered? Probably not – so you've got some work to do by April 3!

Click here to check voter registration status. Need to register? Click here to find out how.

You must be registered by Monday, April 3 in order to vote in the May 2 special election. In Ann Arbor, voters will be deciding whether to support a tax increase for school infrastructure.

Check out CivCity's to learn more about what's on the May 2 ballot!

Washtenaw Sheriff:    Citizens Police Academy

The Washtenaw Sheriff's Office is offering a Citizens Police Academy to get a behind-the-scenes look at local law enforcement. It meets every Wednesday night from May 31 through Aug. 9. (Bonus: Dinner is provided, and it's free!)

Space is limited to 50 people, with a registration deadline on April 28. You must be at least 18 years old to participate.

The academy will cover topics like arrest procedures, dispatch operations, K-9 demonstrations, crime scene investigations, a jail tour and more. 

State Ballot Initiative:     Regulating Legalized Marijuana

Last week, a group called the Michigan Coalition to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol released draft language for a statewide proposal to legalize pot. They hope to put the proposal on the November 2018 ballot.

Jeff Irwin, an Ann Arbor resident and former state legislator, is part of this effort. The group will be holding public forums around the state to discuss the initiative.
This initiative is being supported by the national Marijuana Policy Project. Read a Detroit News article about the effort: "National pot group plots Michigan legalization plan."


What We're Reading

This recent article in The Atlantic: "The University of Michigan’s Plan to Increase Diversity."

The article explores tensions between students of different economic and racial/ethnic backgrounds, and how UM's Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) initiative is trying to address those issues.

An excerpt: "And while the university has acknowledged the lack of socioeconomic and racial diversity on campus and embarked on a long-term plan to improve the numbers and campus climate, students say the school isn’t doing enough and that the pace of change is too slow."


Support CivCity's Work

We work hard to inform, educate and inspire participation in local civic life. But we can only do it with your support. Please consider making a one-time or monthly online donation. It's tax deductible and feels great! 
Or you can send a check to:
The CivCity Initiative
118 S. Main St.
Ann Arbor MI 48104

CivCity also accepts stock donations! Contact Mary Morgan at for details.


Final Thoughts

“What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make.”
                                               – Jane Goodall
Jane Goodall, primatologist and animal rights activist
Please share this newsletter with your friends, family & colleagues – we'd appreciate it!
I recently spent a few days in Madison, South Dakota. Next month, residents there will be electing city commissioners. Today is the deadline to register to vote in that election.

Why do I mention this? Because dates and deadlines for local elections differ widely, and it can be difficult to keep track. Elections at the local level lack the kind of focus, publicity and media attention we see for national events like the U.S. presidential race.

That's why we continue to yammer ad nauseam about Ann Arbor's May 2 special election, and the April 3 voter registration deadline for that.

And we could really use your help in spreading the word to people you know who might not be registered yet. Alert your neighbors, co-workers, people at your place of worship, gym, book club or other social group.

It doesn't take long to register, or to vote. Check out CivCity's Ann Arbor Votes website for more information about what's on the May 2 ballot.

Let's make sure our local elections get as much attention as possible.  

– Mary Morgan, CivCity Founder & Executive Director


Upcoming Public Meetings

NOTE: Meetings are sometimes canceled at the last minute, so be sure to check the links for updated information.

Tues. March 28: 4 p.m. Ann Arbor City Council Policy Agenda Committee. City hall 3rd floor conference room, 301 E. Huron. No agenda posted online.

Tues. March 28: 6 p.m. Washtenaw Community College Board of Trustees. WCC Morris Lawrence Building, Room 150, 4800 E. Huron River Dr., Ann Arbor. Click here to view the agenda. 

Tues. March 28: 7 p.m. Ann Arbor Public Art Commission. City hall 2nd floor council chambers, 301 E. Huron. Click here to view the agenda

Wed. March 29: 5:15 p.m. Ann Arbor Airport Advisory Committee. Airport Terminal Building, 801 Airport Dr. Click here to view the agenda.

Wed. March 29: 5:30 p.m. Ann Arbor Public Schools Board of Education Regular Meeting & Study Session. Forsythe Middle School, 1655 Newport Road. Click here to view the agenda. Watch CTN Channel 18 or online here.

Wed. March 29: 6:30 p.m. Washtenaw County Board of CommissionersCounty administration building, 220 N. Main, Ann Arbor. Click here and here for the agendas. Watch online here.

Thurs. March 30: 8 a.m. Ann Arbor City Council Rules Committee. City hall 1st floor north conference room, 301 E. Huron. No agenda posted online.

Thurs. March 30: 2 p.m. Ann Arbor Planning Commission Annual Retreat. Justice Center 4th floor jury assembly room, 301 E. Huron (next to city hall). Agenda not yet posted online.

Thurs. March 30: 6:30 p.m. Washtenaw County Board of Commissioners Working SessionCounty administration building, 220 N. Main, Ann Arbor. Click here for the agenda. Watch online here.


More Civic Events

Wed. March 29: 6 p.m. Constituent hour with State Rep. Donna Lasinski (District 52)Village of Manchester Municipal Building (Village Offices), 912 City Road, Manchester. 

Mon. April 3: 7:30-9 a.m. Coffee hour with Ann Arbor city councilmember Jack Eaton (Ward 4). Roos Roast Coffee, 1155 Rosewood.

Know of a nonpartisan civic-related event you'd like to publicize? Email Mary Morgan at

Support CivCity

CivCity is a 501(c)(3) nonpartisan nonprofit focused on increasing awareness of how local government works and motivating residents to get involved in civic life. Please support our work by sending donations to: 
The CivCity Initiative
118 S. Main St.
Ann Arbor MI 48104

You can also donate online by clicking this link – it's easy!

You'll get our heartfelt thanks written by hand (let's hear it for old school!) on a notecard featuring local public art or civic infrastructure. How cool is that?

This image is a detail from the mosaics at the Fourth & Washington parking structure.
CivCity Board of Directors
Devon Akmon
Paul Courant
Mary Morgan
Ingrid Sheldon

Special thanks for generous support from the James A. & Faith Knight Foundation, the Buhr Foundation, United Way of Washtenaw County, the Ann Arbor Area Community Foundation, the Ann Arbor Awesome Foundation, the Mosaic Foundation of Rita and Peter Heydon, and the Ann Arbor Area Spirit of Woodstock Fund!

CivCity Online

Find more information – including CivCity's five-year strategic plan – on our website at
Be sure to join CivCity on Facebook, where we regularly post items of community interest. Ann Arbor Votes is also on Facebook!
On Twitter, you can follow us at @A2CivCity and get details about local public meetings and other civic-related info. Get election Tweets by following @AnnArborVotes!

You can also find us on Instagram @A2CivCity!


Copyright ©2017 The CivCity Initiative, All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
118 S. Main St. Ann Arbor MI 48104

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