March 12, 2020

Under the advice of the Madison Heights fire and police chiefs, and the department heads, the city is immediately implementing the following protective measures for the next 30 days:

  • All nonessential public information meetings will be postponed.
  • All recreation and senior programs will be canceled or postponed. We will consider refund policies later.
  • Our Active Adult center and  library will remain open but activities and programs are suspended.
  • Meals at the Active Adult center will continue for pick-up and delivery only, no dine-in.
  • Busing services will continue but passengers presenting with fever or flu-like symptoms will not be allowed to board.
  • The city departments are cleaning counters and work spaces based on information from CDC protocols, and state and county health department recommendations.

If you have a fever or have been in contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19 please stay home.

Stopping the spread of COVID-19 requires all of us to protect our most vulnerable residents. We encourage all community stakeholders, families, businesses, and schools to adopt their own mitigation strategies, and recommend the following:

  • Learn about the signs and symptoms of COVID-19.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Regularly clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces such as doorknobs, cell phones, and light switches.
  • Reinforce best practices for washing hands and covering coughs and sneezes.
  • Maintain a supply of medications, foods, and other essentials especially for individuals at risk of severe illness or those already showing symptoms.
  • Cancel or postpone large gatherings, conferences, and sporting events.
  • Cancel or postpone smaller gatherings that involve individuals at risk of severe illness.
  • Consider video or audio meetings instead of face-to-face meetings.

This is a temporary situation and we will get through this but we need a communitywide effort to stop the spread of COVID-19 as effectively as possible.

February 28, 2020

The theme of today was tools. It started at the State of the Cities where I was awarded a giant wrench and the Mayor talked about the different economic development tools we are using in the city.

At the State of the Cities, Councilwoman Kymm Clark and Councilor Emily Rorhbach joined the mayor and I to officially represented Madison Heights while Robert Wittenberg and Senator Jeremy Moss represented the State. It was a great show of teamwork which is also an important tool.

In the afternoon I attended an anti-bullying program at Lessenger and learned about the tools we have within us to stop bullying. It was a powerful presentation and afterwards I talked with Doug, the presenter about how important it is to educate our youth so that they don’t grow up to be adults who bully. Matthew was flexible while the group did some problem solving.

Heidi Doug and Roslyn discussing the importance of teaching our youth to not become adults who bully

Last up was the MML evening conference where Amy Aubry and I learned about some of the tools available to help with Municipal Finance. Emily and Mike joined other first timers in the Core class.

February 3, 2020

Tonight Mayor Hartwell and I along with other members of council welcomed residents and neighbors to Madison High School for an update on the EPS site on Ten Mile. Lots of politicians attended but Tracy Kecskemeti from EGLE and Tricia Edwards from the EPA were the stars.

Mayor Pro Tem Grafstein and Mayor Hartwell
Tricia Edwards and Tracy Kecskemeti


January 17, 2020

This morning Mayor Hartwell joined us at the weekly EGLE update. Over the last month Councilwoman Clark and I have been joined by several department heads at these meetings. Our physical presence and continued questioning has kept the concerns of Madison Heights at the forefront of the meetings. Residents spoke out at public comment during a Special Council meeting December 30th and as they continue to ask questions, we are listening. Our deliverance of these questions have shaped the response from both EGLE and the EPA.

January 3, 2020

On the morning of December 28, 2019 the City of Madison Heights updated their website calendar to reflect a Special Meeting to be held at 6 pm December 30, 2019. A hard copy notice was also posted at City Hall. A minimum of 18 hours notice is required for a Special Meeting but we strive to provide as much advance notice as is realistically possible. Approximately 20 residents came out to the meeting, significantly more than usually show up at a regular meeting. The city is in ongoing litigation with EPS and is unable to respond to most of the question being asked. Concerns were raised about the ease of entry onto the property and those were addressed the following day. https://youtu.be/7mKC4p-sSrA

January 10, 2020

This morning after Councilwoman Kymm Clark and I attended our third EGLE update in Warren, we met with Senator Jeremy Moss and State Representative Jim Ellison to don hard hats, protective eye wear and shoe coverings before taking a tour of the inside of EPS.

Today I along with Senator Moss and State Rep Ellison issued a press release. Here is my portion portion of the press release

“Over the last three weeks I have reached out to experts in the field from across the country, seeking their guidance and suggestions on what our next steps should be,” Mayor Pro Tem Grafstein said. “I heard the concerns of our residents and as a resident myself, I want solutions and action. Right now, our focus is on cleanup and ensuring the safety of our residents. We appreciate everything EGLE and the EPA are doing now to expedite testing with a goal for complete remediation. Everyone is aware that all eyes are now on us. Moving forward I hope the state and federal agencies will use this as an impetus to update their procedures and policies so that no other municipality will have to go through this. We are working with Senator Moss, Representative Ellison, EGLE and other agencies to coordinate a Public Briefing to address our questions and concerns.”

January 24, 2020

Today a few hours after Councilwoman Clark and I attended our fifth EPS update at the EGLE offices in Warren, I had the opportunity to spend some time one on one with Governor Whitmer and we talked about the EPS site. If she didn’t know before our talk, she knows now that we are looking for support in our efforts to completely and permanently clean up the site.

She talked about reinstating the “polluters pay principle” and I suggested that procedural, administrative and communication changes within EGLE may help decrease the likelihood of something like this happening again.

During our conversation I let Governor Whitmer know what an amazing job Tracy Kecskemeti of EGLE has been doing this last month. From updating us weekly to testifying before the Appropriations committee, she has patiently answered our questions and acknowledged our frustrations. She is dedicated to getting us through this and making sure that Madison Heights is not forgotten.

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January 27, 2020

Today on international Holocaust Day I light a candle in remembrance of my great uncle I never met. Nusin Dovid Grafstein, his wife Esther and their nine children murdered in Oswiencim in 1942


June 25, 2020

A few years ago when I was on the Parks and Rec board we talked about upgrading all the parks so they are accessible. Wildwood was up next. Today while children played on the new structure behind me, I had the honor of cutting the ribbon for its official opening.

Each year when my husband and I renew our license plates we buy the DNR recreation pass. Part of that money goes towards a grant that helped with funding for this upgrade.