Stamas supports call to remove Gladwin County drain commissioner

Sen. Jim Stamas

Sen. Jim Stamas

LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Jim Stamas announced on Tuesday that he supports the Gladwin County Board of Commissioners’ request that the governor remove county Drain Commissioner Robert Evans.

“I share the deep concerns of the county board and the state about the drain commissioner’s repeated failures over many years to properly maintain the county drains, protect Michigan’s waterways from soil erosion, and respond to state violations,” said Stamas, R-Midland. “The drain commissioner is not doing his job and is hurting Gladwin County, its residents and our natural resources.

“For those reasons, I support the county board’s call for the governor to remove the drain commissioner from office.”

On April 24, the Gladwin County Board of Commissioners voted to approve a resolution asking Gov. Rick Snyder to remove Evans from his position.

The resolution said that the cost and expense of rectifying the damage done to the drain system of Gladwin County by the action or non-action of the county drain commissioner continue to accrue.

The request followed a civil suit on April 13 by the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) against Evans for nearly $11 billion.

The suit alleges that Evans repeatedly violated environmental regulations since 2012, including failing to protect surface water and prevent soil erosion and sedimentation.

“Removing a duly elected officer is a rare and serious step, but this is an unprecedented and serious dereliction of duty that cannot be tolerated,” Stamas said.