My house sits on 10 acres of property in the County of Kalkaska and the Township of Garfield, State of Michigan. This and two other lights light up my whole property from the township lights. I attended a Township meeting on this issue last year and shields were installed to prevent the light trespass.
This summer or fall the shields were removed. Our Township supervisor (Todd Jones) told my wife at the meeting she recently attended the shields were removed because they didnt feel they had the lighting they needed and were adding more lights.
We asked if the shields could be added back on the lights, and we were told from XXXXXXXXX "We were here first and if we did'nt like it to move someplace else." Evidently this is what Garfield Township thinks about their residents.
Now these shields were on these lights for well over a year, so why now have they decided there is not enough light on their property?
I will keep this page updated as things progress and I will add more pictures of the lighting problem for all to see.
Here is a satellite view of my area.
The yellow L represents mercury vapor lights .
All of these are on Township property.
Not only do they pollute the night sky,
It costs us taxpayers hundreds of dollors a month in an unnecessary light bill.
This township building is only used one to two times a month, but it is lite up like a jail house 365 days a year.
The yellow shaded area represents the area of light cast from these lights.
As you can see my property in the blue outline is 90% light up by these lights.
It is amazing the damage poor lighting and poor judgment from Township officials can do.
Here is a shot from my Observatory with a 150 mm camera lens.
Taken November 22,2006 at 10 pm
Isn't a pretty sight.
Here is a NEW image taken on December 13 , 2006 with a very cheap webcam to show everyone the NEW light the township just installed.
Also last week someone payed my Observatory a visit and cut the network cables and weather station cables. A police report has been filed with the Kalkaska County Sheriff.
Update January 14 2007 A Garfield Township Official stopped by today to discuss options for a remedy of the lighting situation. Let me say the gentleman was one of the nicest officials I've met. After a discussion there are plans for a remedy and I will keep you updated.
Feb 12 update
3 shy shields have been installed so far on the Lights.
This has made a huge difference already.
Update March 3 2007
Today the township has installed or replaced 2 mercury vapor lights with sodium box lights.
What a big difference this has made.
I went from a blue cast on my Observatory and severe glare to no light cast and glare at all.
I went from seeing the basic bright stars to seeing most of my sky I thought was lost forever.
A special thanks to Al Potts for taking the time to work on this for me and the willingness to work with me.
Garfield Township has very much improved the lighting and best of all saved their part of Our Dark Skies.
In the future Id like to see a township ordinance requiring the shields.
This will ensure future generation to be allowed to enjoy the night sky...
Here is how it looks so far with the New Proper Sky Friendly Lights.
This Problem has been rosolved But I will leave this page up for others to work off of, to help resolve any light pollution problems you may have.
My only major dissapointment was with all of the E mails ive sent to IDA ( International Dark Sky Association) none were responded too.
What is light trespass???
Light trespass occurs when stray light shines onto neighboring properties. Light trespass infringes on the property rights of the neighbor who has unwanted light intruding onto his or her property. It can lower property values, reduce the quality of the nighttime environment and be a general irritant. Citizens should have the right to the full enjoyment of their property without being forced to live with unwanted light directed onto his or her property.
To eliminate light trespass, shield and aim all lights on your own property so the illumination stays within your own property lines. Also, if you can see the source of the light from a neighboring property then your light is committing light trespass. Remember that your property rights stop at your property line. Unless your lights stop there too, they are creating light trespass onto the neighboring property.