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Macomb County

Macomb Matters May 2016 Issue 42

Mark's Message
Macomb Community Action receives Blue Ribbon Outcomes Award
Employee Highlight
For Your Benefit
March New Hires/Retirees
May/June Event Calendar
Recipe Corner

Click for a pdf version of Macomb Matters.

Mark’s Message

This month, I and several other representatives from Macomb County will be heading to Mackinac Island for the Detroit Regional Chamber’s 2016 Mackinac Policy Conference. The weeklong event is a great opportunity for Macomb County to showcase its latest successes and let other partners and stakeholders know about what is coming for the future. This year, we will be promoting Macomb County’s great destinations and championing the county’s cybersecurity initiative called MADCAT. 

We also recently welcomed Aaron Thomas, a new corporation counsel for the county who will primarily support the departments of Community Mental Health, Animal Control and Health, plus handle bankruptcy claims. Thomas has been hired to replace former Corporation Counsel Jill Smith, who retired in late April.

Heading into the summer months, we all look for new fun and exciting things to do around the county.

 I recently stopped by C.J. Barrymore’s to check out The Loop Roller Coaster just installed there. The coaster is part of a renovation the facility is undergoing to be even more family friendly and is 36 feet high with two drops and a 360-degree loop. Watch a video of my first ride on The Loop Roller Coaster! This is a fabulous new attraction to Macomb County and helps to center us as a destination spot in the region.

Last, I know I’ve mentioned them a couple of times, but this is my last chance to let you know about two important events coming up here in Macomb County:

I hope to see you at one or both of these events, which will surely showcase all that Macomb County has to offer.

Macomb Community Action receives Blue Ribbon Outcomes Award

Agency honored for improving quality of life for older adults

Macomb Community Action (MCA) has been chosen by the Area Agency on Aging 1-B (AAA 1-B) to receive the Blue Ribbon Outcomes Award for their work with older adults.

“MCA provides invaluable services to our senior population,” said Macomb County Executive Mark A. Hackel. “I am happy to see they are getting the recognition they deserve.”

The agency’s Office of Senior Services is being honored for its “superior performance in key outcome areas that greatly improve the quality of life of older adults and provide a significant return on investment on public funds,” according to Tina Abbate Marzolf, CEO of AAA 1-B.

“The tangible outcomes for participants are a decrease in poverty and greater independence,” said Steve Gold, director of Macomb County Health and Community Services, which oversees MCA. “Seniors can stay in their homes and remain independent, which is important to everyone.”  

According to AAA 1-B, MCA has the highest total return on investment of dollars granted to a county resource advocacy program. The agency experienced an average of $31.57 in benefits to older Macomb County residents for each dollar granted, compared with a regional average of $12.67. AAA 1-B awarded $76,000 to MCA which resulted in $2.4 million savings for participants.

“Our efficiencies and effectiveness lie in our comprehensive benefits access and administration. When we visit with an older adult, we have one point of contact for the client,” said Katherine Benford, division director at MCA. “When we provide benefit access counseling for programs like Medicaid, food assistance and lower cost prescription drugs, our seniors don’t have to spend as much and they are better able to live on a fixed budget.”

AAA 1-B recognizes organizations that have not only met their performance objectives, but were the highest performers in achieving potential outcomes based on various categories of return on investment.

The award presentation will take place at AAA 1-B’s Annual Community Meeting on May 13 at Lyon Oaks Golf & Banquet Center in Wixom.

Employee Highlight
Steve Yelick – Macomb County Information Technology

By Sarah Cormier, Macomb County Executive Office


By day, Steve Yelick is a project manager for Macomb County’s Information Technology Department. But, by night, he is a writer and an author, diving deep into the world of dystopian science fiction (imperfect societies in the near-future).

Yelick recently self-published his first book, Seeds.

Seeds is what I personally would term ‘fusion fiction’ in that it is sci-fi, but incorporates very heavy elements of fantasy, horror, surrealism and erotica,” explained Yelick.

Seeds is a 600-page, 146,000-word novel that follows three main characters as they get caught up with a revolutionary group they want to join, but first must prove their worth.

“Regarding the theme of revolution against oppressive forces, that goes back to Star Wars, and I’ve always had a favor for this type of narrative, when some smaller, underdog group of people is fighting for their freedom in some fashion or another against a bigger power,” said Yelick.

Seeds is published under Yelick’s pen name, Stephen Bolt. Yelick said his wife created the name because the word bolt has many different meanings such as when a plant bolts (when they grow rapidly from being mostly leaf based to being mostly flower and seed based) and the quickness and brightness of a lightning bolt, which they both felt worked well with the book.

“My last name is often misspelled and mispronounced,” said Yelick. “I wanted something quick and easy.”

 It would be somewhat accurate to say that Yelick has been working on this book since high school, although it became more recently that he was able to turn it into the novel it now is.

“Thirty years ago, I wrote a short story for high school,” he said. “It was 10 pages. Then I worked on it again when I was in grad school and turned it into a novella.”

After a conversation with Steve Gold, Macomb County’s director of Health and Community Services, the two realized they had an affinity for the same type of genre and Yelick gave Gold a copy of the novella to review. Yelick said it was from that review which he decided to turn the novella into a full-fledged book.

“Steve made some really impressive comments throughout the manuscript,” said Yelick, who added that Gold pointed out several themes he felt Yelick could expand upon to really develop the novella.

After nine months of writing, two and a half years of editing and six months of formatting the novel so it could also be available as an e-book, Yelick was finally ready to self-publish. He hired an illustrator in Arizona recommended to him through a friend to create the cover, which he said he is “really happy with.”  Seeds was released to the public on April 14 this year. It is available through Amazon as a paperback and e-book and is also available for purchase at two local bookstores: Minha’s Coffee Haus, 58 Cherry Street and Paperback Writer Books, 61 Macomb Place, both in downtown Mount Clemens.

You would think Yelick would want to take a break after writing such an impressive piece, but no, he said before the first one was even finished, he was already working on the second. He’s about 40,000 words into the second novel and, from his outline, believes it will be even longer than Seeds. He also has a third book planned to finish the series. He said the second and third books will focus more on the actual revolution that is taking place.

“I would ultimately like to turn all three into a series of films,” he said. “I see what I’m writing like it’s through a camera and then turn it to prose on the page.”

The Macomb Township resident is married with two daughters and loves to cook.

“It allows me to exercise all of my skills: plan, execute, create,” he said.

To read more about Stephen Bolt, visit or find him on Facebook and Twitter. You can e-mail him at

For Your Benefit

By Human Resources and Labor Relations

Macomb County values its employees by offering competitive benefits to those who are eligible. Additionally, voluntary benefits are available to supplement current benefits and offer income protection, long-term care, legal assistance and even insurance for a beloved pet. Voluntary benefits include:

  • short-term disability – offered by AFLAC
  • long-term care for employee and spouse – offered by Life Secure
  • pet insurance – offered by Nationwide
  • life insurance for employee, spouse and children – offered by The Hartford.

New in 2016:

  • critical care protection – offered by AFLAC
  • legal plan – offered by Legal Shield.

Watch for upcoming notices detailing specific dates and times for vendor visits, presentations and information regarding voluntary benefits that will be offered. Voluntary Benefit Open Enrollment will be in June with an August effective date.   

Remember to do your homework on these voluntary benefits. Ask additional questions if you have to and choose what provides the most benefit for your situation.

The following benefits are available for enrollment any time throughout the year:

  • the County Deferred Compensation (457) Plan through Vanguard
  • the opportunity to plan and prepare for college expenses for your children through the Michigan Education Savings Plan (MESP).

March New Hires/Retirees

March 2016 New Hires


Aoraha, Mariam A.


Bantios, Evagelos

Public Works

Buffa-Sylvester, Nicole L.

County Clerk

Colasanti, Nicole R.

Information Technology

Crockett, Stephanie N.


Gollis, Raymond

Macomb Community Action

Hayes, Terri J.


Howe, Lauren E.


Jesse, Sarah E.

Macomb Community Action

Jordan, Brandon J.


Maul, Stephanie M.

Community Mental Health

Mcclanahand, Tammy L.


Mcwhorter, Carl K.


Moss, Lisa M.


Puruleski, Devon E.

Human Resources and Labor Relations

Saumier, Allison J.


Simmons, Karlesha S.

Family Court Juvenile Division

Smith, Ericka A.

Macomb Community Action

Stabnick, Carolyn M.

Macomb Community Action

Thompson, Tina R.

Macomb Community Action

Vanatta, Tammi M.

Facilities & Operations





March 2016 Retirees


Antonette, Julie A.


May/June Event Calendar

National Safe Boating Week

Movement Electronic Festival

Summer Launch Party
St. Clair Shores

St. Clair Shores Memorial Day Parade
St. Clair Shores 

Eastpointe Memorial Day Parade

Sterling Heights Memorial Day Parade
Sterling Heights

Grand Opening of Jimmy John’s Field

5/31- 6/3
Detroit Regional Chamber’s Mackinac Policy Conference
Mackinac Island

Downtown Sight & Sound Concert
Mount Clemens

Detroit Grand Prix

Bud Light Classic Car Night & Cruise
Mount Clemens

Tons O’ Trucks & Wheeled Wonders
Macomb Township

4th Annual Breeze through the Shores 5K
Harrison Township 

Flower Daze
Mount Clemens

58th Annual Jefferson Yacht Club Blessing the Fleet
St. Clair Shores

Mount Clemens Art Fair
Mount Clemens 

WYCD Downtown Hoedown

Opening Day – New Baltimore Farmers Market
New Baltimore

6/5 – 9/25
Free Yoga in the Park
New Baltimore

Sprint and Splash
Harrison Township

River Days
Macomb County

Charity Euchre
Shelby Township

The Scintas

Low-cost vaccine clinic
St. Clair Shores

Girlfriends Night Out with Angie Stone

Rosefest Fireworks

Strawberry Social
Mount Clemens

18th Annual Cruisin’ Gratiot

Street Fair Market
New Baltimore

Recipe Corner

Skinny Crustless Quiche

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time:  50 minutes

Serves 6


·         1 cup lowfat cottage cheese

·         2 cups liquid egg whites

·         ½ cup broccoli, cooked and chopped

·         ½ cup extra lean ham, diced

·         ½ cup reduced fat sharp cheddar shredded cheese

·         ¼ teaspoon black pepper


1.      Preheat oven to 375º F.

2.      Mix all ingredients in a large mixing bowl.

3.      Spray 9½-inch pie dish with nonstick cooking spray and pour in ingredients.

4.      Bake for approximately 45 minutes or until center is set.

Nutrition Information

Per Serving (1 slice):

Calories: 111

Fat: 3g

Carbohydrates: 3g

Fiber: 0g

Protein: 15g

Sugars: 1g

Sodium: 896mg

Submitted by:  MSU Extension