Boards & Commissions

The City of Dowagiac government is assisted by many dedicated people by serving on Boards and Commissions. Each Board or Commission has specialized responsibilities to monitor City operations, advise the City Council, or develop policy depending upon their legal authority.


The purpose of this section is to acquaint citizens with the functions and responsibilities of the Boards and Commissions. The links at the bottom include the membership, term of office and current meeting times of each Board or Commission, while also providing general information.

The City of Dowagiac welcomes the opportunity and encourages citizens to participate in their City government.  If you have an interest in serving on any of the boards or commissions, view the application here and submit it to the City Manager's Office.

Aairport Board
The Airport Board, subject to the direction of the Council, is charged and entrusted with the duties, powers and responsibilities for the construction, management, supervision and control of any airport as may or shall be owned or operated by the City.
Board - 5 Members      Term - 5 Years      Meetings - As Needed      Residency Requirements - Service Area Residency

Board of Review
The Board of Review is a three-member board, which examines and reviews the assessment roll for the current year as prepared by the assessor. The Board of Review endorses the completed assessment roll. At the March Board of Review, the Board hears taxpayer appeals. For  the July and December Board of Reviews, the purpose of this meeting is to correct a clerical error or a mutual mistake of fact relative to the correct assessment figures, the rate of taxation, or the mathematical computation relating to the assessing of taxes.

Board- 3 Members      Term - 3 Years      Meetings - Tuesday following first Monday in March      Residency Requirements - City Residency

Brownfield Redevelopment Authority
The Brownfield Redevelopment Authority is a five-member board, whose function is to provide assistance in the redevelopment of contaminated property throughout the city through the use of State and local incentives. This authority was created July 8, 2002 to facilitate the implementation of Brownfield Plans relating to the identification and treatment of environmentally distressed properties, so as to promote revitalization within the municipal limits of the City of Dowagiac
Board - 5 Members      Term - 1 Year       Meetings - As Needed      Residency Requirements - Service Area Residency

Building Authority
The Building Authority consists of three members and was created for the purpose of acquiring, furnishing, equipping, owning, improving, enlarging, operating and maintaining a building or buildings, automobile parking lots or structures, recreational facilities, stadiums, and the necessary site or sites therefore, together with appurtenant properties and facilities necessary or convenient for the effective use of the facilities, for use for any legitimate public purpose of the city.

Board - 3 Members      Term - 6 Years       Meetings - As needed      Residency Requirements - Service Area Residency

Cemetery Board

The Cemetery Board is comprised of five members and is an advisory board responsible for the operation, maintenance and care of Riverside Cemetery.
Board - 5 Members      Term - 5 Years      Meetings - Quarterly       Residency Requirements - Service Area Residency     

Citizens Review Commission
Hears appeals of administrative orders issued for violations of the Exterior Property Maintenance Code. For meeting times, board members and more information click read more.
Board - 5 Members       Term - 5 Years      Meetings - As Needed       Residency Requirements - Service Area Residency 

Construction Board of Appeals
The Construction Board of Appeals consists of six members. If the City refuses to grant an application for a building permit, or if the City makes any other decision pursuant or related to Section 14 of Act 230 of 1972 or the code, an interested person, or the person's authorized agent, may appeal in writing to the Board of Appeals.  

Board - 5 Members      Term - 5 Years        Meetings - As Needed        Residency Requirements: Service Area Residency

Dial-A-Ride Transportation Local Advisory Board
Consists of a minimum of six members. The members review and recommend to City Council the DART budget, fare structure and improvements to services provided by DART under the direction of the DART Coordinator. One of the oldest Dial-A-Ride services in Michigan, Dowagiac DART began demand-response services in June 1975 with a three-bus fleet.
Board - 6 Members      Term - Open-Ended      Meetings - As Needed       Residency Requirements - Service Area Residency

DDA

The Downtown Development Authority (DDA) was created in 1986 by the City of Dowagiac to address, what was then, a deteriorating downtown. Since its creation, through public and private partnerships, the community has invested more than $250 million in the revitalization of its Central Business District. Multiple streetscape improvement projects created a pedestrian-friendly shopping district and a perfect setting for this community's niche of specialty shops, fine and casual dining, and seasonal events and festivals. The DDA's Facade Incentive & Architectural Design Services Program, coupled with the City's Rental Rehabilitation Program for the development of upstairs apartments, has created a positive environment for property owners and investors. The DDA maintains a database of available storefronts, as it actively assists building owners market their properties for lease or rent. It also markets the Central Business District, businesses located therein, and community events and festivals to day-visitors and residents. A growing database of day-visitors is maintained, who receive promotional mailings on a seasonal basis. 
Board - 9 Members      Term - 4 Years      Meetings - As Needed      Residency Requirements - Membership Requirements Unrelated To Residency

Design Review Committee
The Design Review Committee consists of five members, who provide information to assist homeowners in making appropriate exterior improvements to homes and administrates the cash incentive program for those property owners making said improvements.
Board - 5 Members      Term - 4 Years     Meetings - As Needed     Residency Requirements - City Residency

Economic Development and Opportunity Advisory Board
The Economic Development and Opportunity Advisory Board shall consist of 5 members. One member will be a member of the Dowagiac City Council and be appointed by a majority vote of City Council. The other members shall be area citizens and business leaders. Members of the board shall be appointed by the Mayor and shall be subject to confirmation by the Council.
Board - 5 Members      Term - 5 Years      Meetings - As Needed      Residency Requirements - Service Area Residency

Electric Facilities Board

The Electric Facilities Board is a five-member advisory board to the City Council. The Board advises Council on matters relating to the operation and maintenance of the electric utility.
Board - 5 Members      Term - 5 Years      Meetings - As Needed      Residency Requirements -Service Area Residency

Election Commission
The Election Commission is comprised of three members and was created to be in charge of all activities and duties required of it by state law and the City Charter relating to the conduct of City elections.
Board - 3 Members      Term - By Elected/Appointed Terms, Non-Expiring      Meetings - As Indicated by City Clerk      Residency Requirements -By Charter

Housing Commission Board
The Housing Commission consists of five members and strictly limits itself to the needs of those facilities and individuals (including, but not by way of limitation, the elderly, the handicapped, and those displaced by urban renewal or other governmental action) who are in the lowest income group and who cannot afford to pay enough to cause private enterprise in the city metropolitan area to build an adequate supply of decent, safe and sanitary dwellings for their use.    
Board - 5 Members      Term -5 Years      Meetings - Quarterly at Chestnut Towers      Residency Requirements - Service Area Residency

Library Board
The Dowagiac District Library was established in 2003 to provide high-quality library services to residents of the Dowagiac Union School District, including Silver Creek, Keeler and Wayne Townships, excluding Pokagon and LaGrange Townships. Reciprocal borrowing agreements make it possible for residents of the Dowagiac, Cass and Van Buren District, and Watervliet and Hartford libraries to borrow and share resources. This Board consists of seven members, who are appointed by each of the participating governments. The City appoints two members of this Board.

LOCC
This Committee reviews and recommends to Council the salary adjustments for local elected officials.
Board - 5 Members      Term - 5 Years      Meetings - Odd Numbered Years      Residency Requirements - Service Area Residency

Museum Advisory Committee

This Committee consists of 14 members, whose role is to study, investigate and advise the Museum Director and City Council on artifacts, collections, and displays of local history at the Dowagiac Area History Museum.

Parks and Recreation Board
This Board consists of five members, who afford citizenship participation in the affairs of the city government for the purpose of reviewing the needs of community park facilities.     
Board - 5 Members      Term - 5 Years      Meetings - Quarterly      Residency Requirements - Service Area Residency

Planning Commission

The Planning Commission is comprised of seven members, whose main purpose is to regulate land use in the city. They formulate plans and make recommendations for the most effective economic, social and physical development of the city. Actions of these duties are based on the comprehensive Master Plan, which contains the entire geographical area of the city and the physical structures and services such as roads and utilities relevant to physical development for the next 15 to 20 years.
Board - 7 Members     Term - 3 Years      Meetings - 1st Monday of Each Month      Residency Requirements - City Residency

Police Advisory Board
Provides assistance and advice to the Public Safety Director to foster positive communication between the police and the community.

The Public Art Advisory Commission (PAAC)

This commission shall consist of 6 members, one of which will be the Mayor who shall serve as Chairperson. One member will be a member of the Dowagiac City Council and be appointed by a majority vote of City Council. The other members shall be area citizens with an interest in the arts. Members of the board shall be appointed by the Mayor and shall be subject to confirmation by the Council. 
Board - 6 Members      Term - 5 Years      Meetings - As Needed      Residency Requirements - Service Area Residency

Russom Park Committee

The Russom Park Committee is a joint advisory committee consisting of City residents and Township residents, formed to aid in the planning for improvements and developing of recommendations on Russom Park.     
Term - Open Ended       Meetings - As Needed 

Tree Board
The Tree Board is comprised of five members and has the responsibility to study, investigate and counsel; develop or update and administer a written plan for the care, preservation, pruning, planting, replanting, removal or disposition of trees and shrubs in parks, along streets and in other public areas.
Board - 5 Members      Term - 5 Years     Meetings - As Needed      Residency Requirements - Service Area Residency

Zoning Board of Appeals
Considers appeals of matters pertaining to the interpretation and enforcement of the City's Zoning Ordinance.  The powers of the ZBA include hearing of appeals, granting of variances, zoning ordinance interpretations and granting of temporary uses and buildings.  

Board - 5 Members       Term - 3 Years      Meetings - As Needed       Residency Requirements - City Residency