By Donna Gundle-Krieg
The CAC is a group created after Boman collected 1,570 signatures in 2019. Boman worked with District 4 Councilman Andrew Spivey to file the petitions.
District 4 is the second of Detroit’s seven districts to establish a CAC. The 7th District was previously the only district in Detroit to have a CAC.
According to the Detroit City Charter, “The purpose of these Councils is to improve citizen access to city government.” The Charter also outlines that “The City Council member elected from the non at-large district in which a Community Advisory Council resides, or their designee, shall attend all official meetings of that Community Advisory Council.”
Each district’s CAC is composed of two appointed and five elected members. While the office is non-partisan, both Boman and Creswell are very active in the Libertarian party of Michigan, and the outspoken Boman was endorsed by the Party at its state convention. In 2017 Creswell was a Libertarian candidate for District 1 State Representative. He was also the 2006 candidate for governor, and has served as the Libertarian Party of Michigan’s Vice-Chair.
The third member elected to the 4th District Community Advisory Council is Washington Youson, a Democrat who also ran in 2017 for District 1 State Representative.
The two appointed members will be filled by 4th District Councilman Andre Spivey.
Once the board is fully formed, the five board members will conduct a search for two well-qualified representatives. One will serve as a representative for senior citizen’s issues and the second person will be a Youth Representative. (The CAC is the only body in Detroit government to have a voting member under 18!)
Spivey will choose the Senior Citizen Representative and the Youth Representatives from the list provided by the Council.
Boman said he has encountered objections in 2019 when circulating the petition to create the CAC, but those were largely based on misunderstandings.
Some people were concerned that creating an organization with seven office holders would strain the city’s limited budget at a time when many retirees continue to suffer from lost benefits in the wake Detroit’s bankruptcy,
I wouldn’t have undertaken this effort if it would add an additional burden on taxpayers. The Charter is clear on this, as it states: ‘Community Advisory Councils shall receive no appropriations from city funds, but may accept donations or grants in accordance with state, federal or local law.’