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Macomb Community College Board of Trustees authorizes operating millage proposal for May 8, 2018, election

– Thursday, January 18, 2018 12:00AM

Proposal combines, restores and continues prior voter-approved operating and technology millages

A ballot proposal to combine, restore and continue prior voter-approved operating and technology millages was approved for placement on the ballot in the May 8, 2018, election by the Macomb Community College Board of Trustees at its Jan. 17 meeting.  The millage is vital to the operations of the college, comprising 26 percent, $36 million, of the college’s operational budget and will expire in 2020. 

“Macomb Community College is an indispensable resource that residents rely on for education and training that connects to workplace opportunity,” said Jennifer Haase, chair, Macomb Community College Board of Trustees.  “The millage is critical to ensuring that the college can continue providing up-to-date programs that position residents for in-demand careers and the community for economic success.”  

The ballot proposal seeks approval of a 1.464 mill levy, the amount Macomb County voters approved in 2000. Since then, the college’s millage has been subject to seven Headlee rollbacks, reducing the millage rate to 1.4072 mills and equating to $1.5 million annually.  Restoration of the original millage rate would result in an increase of less than $3 per year for a house with a taxable value of $50,000 (approximate sale value of $100,000).

“We’re committed to a balanced fiscal approach to support strategic investment in programs and resources, while maintaining affordable tuition and a low millage rate,” said James O. Sawyer IV, Ed.D., president, Macomb Community College.  “About 80 percent of Macomb’s students leave the college debt free and the majority of our graduates remain in the community to live and work, significantly contributing to Macomb County’s future.” 

The largest portion of the college’s operating revenue comes from tuition, comprising 43 percent of its budget.  Local property taxes – the millage – provide 26 percent, state appropriations provide 25 percent and other revenue, such as grants and investment income, provide 6 percent.  Macomb’s millage rate will remain third lowest among Michigan’s 28 community colleges if the restoration is adopted.  

More information about the millage as well as the actual ballot language are available at

About Macomb Community College

Macomb Community College ( is one of the nation’s leading community colleges, providing learning experiences to nearly 40,000 students annually.  Macomb nationally ranks in the top two percent in the number of associate degrees awarded by community colleges and is the largest grantor of associate degrees in Michigan. The college’s comprehensive educational programming includes pre-collegiate experiences, university transfer and career preparation programs, bachelor degree completion and graduate degree programs, workforce training, professional education and certification, and continuing education and enrichment opportunities. 

Media Contact: Jeanne Nicol,, 586.445.7204