blog, articles & publications

The Annual 2014 Michigan Townships Association Convention

Cliff Bloom will teach a seminar at the annual Michigan Townships Association Convention in Traverse City on Thursday afternoon, January 30, 2014 beginning at 1:30 p.m. regarding townships and riparian/water law.  For more information, please go to the MTA’s website at   Read More

BSM Client Prevails in Property Tax Exemption Case

BSM recently represented the City of Kentwood in the case of SBC Health Midwest, Inc v City of Kentwood (Michigan Tax Tribunal No. 416230).  The petitioner was claiming a property tax exemption going back to 2011 for approximately $600,000 of personal property that it owned and used in the operation of a for-profit college (Sanford Brown).  The City denied the exemption on the grounds that for-profit schools are not entitled to property tax exemptions under state law.  The property owner appealed and, after careful consideration of the legal arguments and evidence presented by the City, the Michigan Tax Tribunal agreed with the City that for-profit schools are not entitled to the exemption.  The Tax Tribunal’s decision was reprinted in the November edition of the Michigan Assessor Magazine, which you can read hereFor more information about this case, how it may impact property in your jurisdiction, or to discuss how BSM may be able to help you with other property tax related questions, please contact Crystal Morgan at BSM.   Read More

The Michigan Library Association 2013 Conference

Join us at the Michigan Library Association's Annual Conference, held October 16-18, 2013 at the Lansing Center. We a sponsor of this year's conference and Richard Butler, of our firm, will be speaking at the event.  Read More

Bloom Sluggett Morgan Partners Recognized as Super Lawyers for 2013

The peer review group Super Lawyers, published by Thomson Reuters, has again named Cliff Bloom and Jeff Sluggett as Super Lawyers in the practice area of Government/Municipal Law.  We thank our clients for making this recognition possible.  Read More

BSM Welcomes Cortney Schaffer

We are pleased to welcome attorney Cortney Schaffer as the newest member of our legal team. Cortney will practice in the areas of public sector, library, and real estate law. She joins BSM with previous experience at the Michigan Court of Appeals. Cortney holds a Master of Public Administration from Western Michigan University, a Juris Doctor from Valparaiso University School of Law, and a Bachelor of Arts in History from Albion College. Cortney can be reached directly at or 616.965.9346.  Read More

The Michigan Court of Appeals Enhances Township Regulation of Public Roads

In Oshtemo Charter Township v. Kalamazoo County Road Commission, decided on June 25, 2013, the Michigan Court of Appeals made it easier for Michigan townships to enact reasonable regulations regarding county public roads (especially truck route ordinances) over the objection of the local county road commission.  For more information, contact our office.  Read More

Michigan Supreme Court to Hear Appeal Regarding Demolition Orders

In December 2012, the Michigan Court of Appeals issued a published decision that requires municipalities to give property owners an opportunity to repair structures prior to demolition, regardless of the extent of the damage or the cost to repair  Read More

Crystal Morgan and Cliff Bloom: Success at the Michigan Supreme Court in a Riparian Case

After receiving an unfavorable decision in the circuit court in a case involving riparian/lake access issues, the plaintiffs/riparian property owners hired our attorneys to pursue an appeal of the decision.  Our clients won a partial victory in the Michigan Court of Appeals, which reversed portions of the trial court’s adverse decision.  Thereafter, our clients pursued an appeal to the Michigan Supreme Court and based on the record and the application for leave to appeal drafted by BSM attorneys, the Michigan Supreme Court vacated the erroneous portions of the Court of Appeals decision regarding a prescriptive easement, and granted major relief to our clients.  To read the Court of Appeals opinion and the Michigan Supreme Court order, click here  Read More

LEGISLATIVE ALERT - Fireworks Regulation

A bill that gives local units of government greater control over consumer fireworks was signed into law as Public Act 65 of 2013 (“PA  65”) on June 19 by Lt. Governor Calley (on behalf of Governor Snyder who was on a trade trip).  PA 65 takes immediate effect and authorizes local units of government to regulate consumer fireworks during certain hours on the day before, the day of, and the day after a national holiday.  More specifically, PA 65 allows local units of government to enact an ordinance to regulate the ignition, discharge, or use of consumer fireworks on those days as follows:  Read More

Cliff Bloom to Teach Water Law Seminar Up North

On Saturday Morning, July 13, 2013, Cliff Bloom will be teaching a water law seminar on Bois Blanc Island in the Wagner Room adjacent to the Township Hall.  For more information, please call the Bois Blanc Township Clerk at (231) 634-7275.  This is a free seminar.    Read More