Grosse Pointe Woods Councilwoman's Announcement a Surprise
Lisa Pinkos Howle announced earlier this month she will not seek re-election this November but hinted at a future contribution.
Just the other day I was telling my husband how much I respected Grosse Pointe Woods City Councilwoman Lisa Pinkos Howle. Not only do I agree with most of her votes and admire how she seeks creative ways to keep the Woods moving in a positive direction, but she is responsive. You have a question about why she voted a certain way? Just email her and she’ll write you back, quickly.
I like that about her. I like that she’s available and responsive to what residents have to say. A good example is the issue of the Neighborhood Club's attempt to locate in a vacant Mack Avenue building. She is asking residents to contact her to seek a solution. Who else does that?
I like that she realizes that as a decision-maker in Grosse Pointe Woods she has an obligation to actually serve her constituents, not her own agenda.
She listens. She’s smart. And like I said, she’s creative.
But Lisa Pinkos Howle announced this month that she will not seek a third term. She’s done in November. I can’t begin to tell you how upset I was as I read her Letter to the Editor on Patch. If you follow even a smidge of local politics you know that it’s no secret that she is a lone soldier on many fronts in the Council. Pinkos Howle has challenged other council members and our mayor on many issues. She won’t accept, “because that’s the way it is,” as an answer to any question.
I have a personal example of this. A couple of years ago, in November, I looked into taking my dog to the Woods’ dog park, at Lake Front Park. I knew there was a $20 fee for the year, but inquired whether there was a discount, as I was only going to use it for a couple of months in the calendar year. I was told there was no pro-rated fee. I would have to pay the full $20. I was upset about this. I felt it was a scam. Why couldn’t there be a discounted fee, I asked?
No one could give me an answer. I fired off emails to the council members and Mayor Robert Novitke, stating my complaint and request to find a way to change the rule. I received a few council responses that said something to the effect of, 'Sorry, but the $20 is meant to help pay for improvements to the dog park.'
Mayor Novitke called me back, which I appreciated. But his stance was that $20 wasn’t that much money. I informed him that, to me, $20 was a significant amount of money–that I could feed my family two or three dinners with that amount.
I also got an email from Lisa Pinkos Howle. She said she agreed with me. Not only did she agree that I should not have to pay the $20, but she didn’t think anyone should. Dogs are part of the family, she said, and should be allowed access to the park with our city-issued park passes. She asked for my help. Get enough signatures on a sheet of paper proposing free dog park passes for residents and she would champion it in the Council. In the end, I didn’t bother to get the signatures, but it meant a lot to me that she was willing to help.
In her Letter to the Editor, Pinkos Howle stated that she is, “considering making a more significant contribution at a later date.” Will she run for mayor? State Representative?
Whatever it is, she has my enthusiastic vote.