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The local paper issues a monthly paper, whereas the county-wide paper issues a paper more frequently. Does the Township have to post its notices for zoning public hearings in the local paper to comply with the Michigan Zoning Enabling Act?

No, as long as the county-wide paper is “generally circulated” in the Township. Under the Michigan Zoning Enabling Act, public hearings must be noticed through publication in a newspaper. But, the Zoning Enabling Act does not require the newspaper be specific to the Township or that it be the newspaper with the most subscribers within the Township. Many local communities are losing their local print media and thus relying on newspapers that are circulated more broadly is becoming necessary. Importantly, the Zoning Act only requires that it is “a newspaper” “generally circulated” within the Township to provide sufficient notice.

 

As a practical tip, there are some communities with overlapping newspapers that do publish on a regular basis. There is nothing that prevents the Township from publishing in more than one newspaper. While not required by law, it can be helpful if the Township finds that two newspapers have competing circulations within the Township.

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