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Planning and Economic Development

Focus Macomb


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Message from Mark





Hello and welcome to the October edition of Focus Macomb. It’s officially fall here in Macomb County and we’re also heading into the season of giving thanks. So with that in mind, I wanted to begin this message by expressing my gratitude to the Macomb County Office of Senior Services. Earlier this month, they resumed hosting the annual Macomb County Senior Fun Festival - an event now in its 31st year! If you were unable to attend, we’ve got everything you need to know about available programs and services at Our team is also just a phone call away at (586) 469-5228. So get in touch. We're here to help.

As always when we head into November it’s time to turn our collective attention to the election. The residents of Macomb County will play a pivotal role in shaping the future of our nation, state and local communities. So it’s important that our voice is heard throughout this election cycle. There are many candidates who have stepped up to represent our community, and a number of ballot measures that could help us invest in critical services.  As political ads and mailings have started to hit the airwaves and mailboxes, the whole process can get rather confusing. I wanted to take a moment to highlight a few millage proposals that could have a positive impact for Macomb County.  

This past year Macomb County was named the most veteran friendly county in the state of Michigan. With more than 47,000 veterans across our community, our Office of Veterans Services does an exceptional job of providing services and programs that protect those who have protected us. This upcoming election, Veterans Services is seeking a millage renewal to continue the exceptional work that they do. 

Our friends at the Macomb Intermediate School District are asking the voters of Macomb County to consider a proposal to construct, renovate, and update facilities where more than 19,000 Macomb County special education students from all 21 public school districts receive specialized support.  

Finally, Macomb County is being asked to renew its investment in the SMART transportation system.  SMART has been an exceptional community transit provider for decades. From providing a lifeline to our seniors, to creating inventive on-demand service, SMART has continually developed community driven mobility solutions. This election cycle they  have put forth a millage renewal that is a reduction in cost yet modernizes services.       

In closing, I’d like to touch on the fall season in Macomb County - one of the best times to experience all our community has to offer. Our apple orchards and cider mills are great places to spend an afternoon with the kids. Our parks and trails are fantastic resources for getting outdoors and getting active. And our local events range from spooky and scary, to family-friendly. There’s truly something for everyone. So visit for more information and inspiration. We’ve got everything you need to fill up your calendar this month and beyond!

Thank you and take care,




Macomb County Manufacturing Day gives students behind-the-scenes access to local industry


Earlier this month, nearly 2,600 students from multiple local high schools boarded buses and visited one of 53 host sites taking part in Macomb County’s Manufacturing Day Week, which ran from October 3 through October 7. The annual event, which was coordinated by Macomb County Planning and Economic Development and the Macomb Intermediate School District (MISD), provided opportunities for students to tour area advanced manufacturing facilities and meet people who make things.

“Hosting Manufacturing Day is a crucial part of building a future workforce for industry in our region,” said Macomb County Executive Mark Hackel. “It connects young people with employers and shows them what types of careers are available in this field. And hopefully, it inspires them to consider professions within this arena when they’re finished with school.”

Hackel joined Dakota High School at a tour of TEMO, Inc. in Clinton Township. Founded in 1967, TEMO is the nation’s largest manufacturer of sunrooms providing high quality products to more than 150 authorized dealers.

"We were very excited to talk with students from Dakota High School about building their future careers. It’s very important for everyone to have a solid map of their life so they know where their life journey is headed – it’s never too late to start your map," said TEMO Founder and CEO Nino Vitale. "Growing TEMO is not only about building the company. It's about building our local community. We have been here for over 50 years. It's important to me that our growth has a positive impact on our employees and the community in which we all live."

All students participating in Manufacturing Day Week receive a 90-120 minute guided tour and some combination of the following:

  • Briefing by a company leader who provides an overview of the company, the type of manufacturing they do and the customers they serve as well as info about employment opportunities.
  • Smaller sub-tours that highlight different work areas and careers
  • Opportunities for students to talk with employees and see the product life cycle in action 
  • Opportunities for students to see and touch the machinery, tools and products that are a part of the industrial workplace

These experiences help the students better understand what a career in advanced manufacturing might look like. The tours also provide benefits for the host sites in that they get the chance to promote their companies and interact with the next generation of talent. Several participating companies have even hired previous Manufacturing Day attendees that were interested in the field.

“We’ve seen real connections come out of our Manufacturing Day events,” said Vicky Rowinski, director of Macomb County Planning and Economic Development. “And given current workforce challenges, like talent shortages and other issues, our program is especially relevant. We’re helping create a pipeline that can supply workers and solve real problems facing our local businesses.”

Since 2014, more than 16,000 students have participated in Macomb County’s Manufacturing Day through the support of an active planning committee and the generosity of host sites and sponsors. Find a list of 2022 supporters and additional information at


Macomb County Department of Roads Ready for Winter


The Macomb County Department of Roads (MCDR) is gearing up for ice and snow with the addition of new winter maintenance equipment and getting trucks and plows prepared for winter.

“Michigan’s unpredictable weather impacts our roads, residents and community. Road safety and winter readiness are top priorities for Macomb County,” said MCDR Director Bryan Santo. “We work relentlessly to ensure our winter operations maintain a safe and drivable road system for all Macomb County motorists and visitors.”

MCDR has a winter maintenance fleet of more than 100 snowplows, salt trucks and graders. The department has an annual average budget of $4 million to keep the fleet on the road and up to date with technology and equipment. In 2020, MCDR spent more than $5.8 million on winter maintenance for primary, local and state roads.

With the support of the motoring public, MCDR’s goal is to keep the roads as safe as possible. The Department of Roads cautions drivers to remain alert during and immediately following winter weather and reminds motorists to drive appropriately for conditions and to give snowplows plenty of room to safely clear the roads. MCDR also urges drivers to follow these safety tips on the roadways:

  • Remove all snow and ice from your vehicle, including the hood, roof, trunk, headlights, taillights, windows and mirrors.
  • Buckle up.
  • Start your drive early allowing extra time for slow driving conditions.
  • Keep a safe distance between you and the vehicle in front of you.
  • Drive defensively and brake early. Stopping on icy roads requires three to nine times the distance to come to a complete stop.

For the latest news from the Department of Roads, follow MCDR on Facebook and sign up to receive email and text alerts for construction and traffic updates at


Senior Services hosts 31st annual Macomb County Senior Fun Festival


Hundreds of local seniors turned out for the 31st annual Senior Fun Festival hosted by the Macomb County Office of Senior Services on Thursday, October 20. The event, which was held at the Lorenzo Cultural Center at Macomb Community College, was the first festival since 2019. 

“Here in Macomb County, we value our senior citizens,” said Macomb County Executive Mark A. Hackel. “Our Senior Fun Festival is the perfect setting to connect with our seniors and ensure they are aware of all the programs and partners that are here to help them thrive in Macomb.” 


Nearly 100 vendors who specialize in the needs of aging individuals were in attendance offering free health screenings, giveaways, entertainment and more.

The Office of Senior Services also ensured guests could learn more about the support and programs available to local seniors and caregivers.  

“Our goal is to help Macomb County residents age in place,” said Nicole Urban, program manager, Macomb County Office of Senior Services. “So often having just one or two services can make an impact for a senior to remain in their own home. Programs like Meals on Wheels, home care or transportation services, can make a world of difference for both the senior and their caregiver.”  Visit for more information.



Volunteers needed to prepare taxes for veterans and low-income individuals in Macomb County


Macomb County Veterans Services is seeking volunteers to help veterans and low-income individuals prepare their taxes this tax season. In 2021, this support helped the County prepare more than 2,200 local returns.

“Tax preparation season is just around the corner and we need volunteer assistance to ensure our free programming continues,” said Laura Rios, director, Macomb County Veterans Services. “Our support can make a real difference for members of the community who served their country, or for individuals who do not have the means to pay for tax service, so volunteering in this way can be extremely rewarding. It’s a short commitment, but one that has a long-term impact.”

Macomb County Veterans Services is an IRS VITA partner, a more than 50-year-old federal tax preparation assistance program that provides support to:

  • People who generally make $60,000 or less
  • Persons with disabilities; and
  • Limited English-speaking taxpayers

The County also provides this support to all veterans. Individuals wishing to volunteer through this initiative are asked to have the following abilities/qualities:

  • Basic computer skills and familiar with Adobe Acrobat
  • Basic knowledge of filing personal income taxes
  • Friendly and personable
  • No felony arrest or convictions
  • Current driver’s license or state identification card
  • Can commit to one 4-6 hour shift per week

The 12-week tax preparation program will run from January 25, 2023 to April 15, 2023, operating out of 9 locations across the County, with the main hub at the Macomb County Family Resource Center (196 North Rose Street in Mount Clemens). Day shifts are available. 

Individuals who sign up to volunteer must attend two training sessions at the center on December 3, 2022  from 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and January 21, 2023 from 8:30 a.m. -11:00 a.m. The following training will be provided:

  • Basic federal tax law training
  • Advanced federal tax law training
  • State law training
  • Standards of conduct and ethics

Interested volunteers can call Laura Rios at 586-469-6507.


Macomb County Health Department offers three flu immunization clinics


The Macomb County Health Department has opened three flu immunization clinics in Macomb County, with indoor locations in Clinton Township and Warren, and a drive-thru location in St. Clair Shores.

“Getting an annual seasonal flu vaccine is the best way to help protect you and your family against flu, and reduce the risk of flu illness,” said Andrew Cox, director and health officer of Macomb County Health Department. “The continued presence of COVID-19 and the beginning of the flu season makes flu vaccinations an important factor in helping support efforts to help keep our communities healthy.”

Indoor flu immunizations will be available at the Verkuilen Building located at 21885 Dunham Road in Clinton Township, and the Health Department’s Southwest Health Center located at 27690 Van Dyke in Warren. Both clinics offer flu vaccinations Monday – Friday.

Drive-thru flu immunizations are available at the Health Department’s Southeast Health Service Center located at 25401 Harper Avenue in St. Clair Shores. Vaccinations will be available on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.   

For all locations, appointments are preferred, but walk-up appointments are welcome. To make an appointment, click here or call the Macomb County Health Department Immunization Program at 586-469-5372 or 586-465-8537. For more information, click here.



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