City of Ionia

City Council and Mayor

The City Council serves as the legislative body of the City and is responsible for setting policy and approving the annual fiscal year budget. The Mayor serves a term of four years as the chief executive officer of the City and is elected by the electorate on an at-large basis. Learn more about City Council from the City Charter.

Meet the City Council Members

Not counting the position of Mayor, there are eight City Council members with two elected from each of the City of Ionia's four wards on a partisan basis for four-year terms. The City Council selects one of its members to serve as deputy mayor who, if a mayoral vacancy occurs, shall become mayor for the remainder of the unexpired term. For information about City elections and running for elected office, please visit the City Clerk's page.

First Ward, Gordon Kelley

First Ward, Council Member Gordon KelleyGordon is the owner of KDH Construction and lives on West Main Street with his wife Susan. They have 3 adult daughters - Melissa, Judith-Hope, and Keturah - and they host parented 7 foreign exchange students. Gordon was first elected to the City Council in November 1989 and has served continuously since January 2000, many of those years as the liaison between the Planning Commission and the City council. He has previously served as a board member and President of the local Home Builders Association, on the Executive Board of Directors and as a Regional Vice President of the Michigan Association of Home Builders, as a board member of Ionia Community Theatre, and is currently on the Board of Directors of Ionia Area Habitat for Humanity.

First Ward, Tim Lee

Tim Lee has been a resident of Ionia since 2005 and is employed at Matcor Automotive. Tim has served on the Planning Commission since 2012 and recently served as Chairman. Tim and his wife Elizabeth have four children who are enrolled in Ionia Public Schools and reside on West Lytle Street.

Second Ward, Tom Millard

Second Ward, Council Member Tom MillardTom Millard has been a small business owner in Ionia for 25 years. During this time, he has served the public interest as a member of various community boards, including the Ionia Downtown Development Authority (DDA), the Ionia Chamber of Commerce, and the Ionia Theatre. Tom is currently employed with Life EMS. Tom and his wife Jani have been long-time residents of West Washington Street, Ionia.

Second Ward, Richard A. Starr, II

Rich grew up in Canton Michigan and is a retired USAF Veteran, MBA, & Certified Management Professional who has led multi-national teams on six continents. He served for 21 years as an Aircraft Mechanic and a Cyber Systems Operator, completing two deployments to southwest Asia where he managed the mission planning networks and aircraft targeting systems for bomber operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. Rich finished his military service in 2019 after consecutive assignments to the International Military Staff in Brussels as the liaison to the DoD Communications Electronics Board and the NATO Allied Communications Manager. He's now a part-time investor and has represented Ionia's Second Ward since 2019.

Rich and his wife Cindi have been married since 2001, and they live on W Main Street with their two daughters Aurelia and Libelle. They share a passion for antiquity and enjoy restoring Ionia's historic Vanderheyden house.

Third Ward, John R. Milewski, II (Deputy Mayor)

Third Ward, Council Member John R. Milewski, IICouncilmember John R. Milewski, II joined the City Council in June 2008. John has previously been a member of the Planning Commission since 2005 and had been its chairperson since 2007 until joining the City Council. He has served as the secretary to the Board of Directors for Relief After a Violent Encounter (RAVE) - Ionia / Montcalm for 9 years, as the communications chair for the Habitat for Humanity of Ionia County Board of Directors for 10 years, and as the secretary to the board for Sparrow-Ionia Hospital Board of Trustees for 10 years. He is a City of Ionia representative to the Ionia Regional Utilities Authority (IRUA). John was appointed Deputy Mayor in the fall of 2019.

John is employed by Ionia County Intermediate School District as the Director of Technology, and also functions in that capacity for Saranac Community Schools. John resides with his wife Beth, and sons Will, John, and James, on Lafayette Street.

Third Ward, Jeff Winters

Third Ward, Council Member Jeff WintersJeff Winters joined the City Commission in January 2006. Jeff resides on Ridgewood Drive in Ionia, Michigan. Mr. Winters has previously served the City as a member of the City of Ionia Planning Commission, and he is now a 3rd Ward Commissioner. He also serves in the capacity as a member of the Ionia-Montcalm Circuit Court’s “Ionia County Community Corrections Board."

City Council Meetings

Ionia City Council meetings are held the first Tuesday of each month at 7:00 p.m. at City Hall, 114 N. Kidd Street, Ionia, Michigan, unless rescheduled due to a conflict with a holiday or in instances when there may not be a quorum of the City Council present at the meeting. To view regular City Council meeting dates, please visit our City Calendar page. Also, visit our Meeting Agendas and Minutes page.

Meet the Mayor, Daniel A. Balice

City of Ionia Mayor, Daniel A. BaliceThe mayor presides over meetings of the City Council and is considered a member of the City Council with a vote. He is also responsible for recommending individuals to City Council to serve on the various boards and commissions of the city.

Education
Daniel A. Balice graduated from Ionia High School in 1978, Grand Valley State University (magna cum laude) in 1982 with degrees in Criminal Justice and Psychology and Cooley Law School 1985 (cum laude).

Employment
Attorney at law Daniel A. Balice has a general law practice, Peterson Paletta Balice, PLC's in Ionia, where he has been practicing since 1985.

Daniel A. Balice was first elected to the City of Ionia Council in 1988 and became the Honorable Mayor of the City of Ionia in 1990. His father, C. Anthony Balice, was the Honorable Mayor from 1949 to 1961 and 1965 to1966.

Since his becoming the mayor in 1990:

  • The population of Ionia has doubled, and property values have increased by over $100,000,000.
  • A new wastewater treatment plant was built, adding two oxidation towers to accommodate the growth of the city and surrounding areas.
  • A new public safety building was constructed and gained accredited status.
  • A new City Charter was adopted.
  • The City has expanded its geographic boundaries and implemented a city income tax.
  • City property tax levies have been reduced.
  • The City has built new wells, implemented a wellhead protection program, and fluoridated the drinking water.
  • Rebuilt street, sidewalk, water, and sewer infrastructure.
  • Major expansion to City Parks and Recreation programs.
  • The City of Ionia obtained the title to the Armory Building at the corner of Main and Dexter Streets, which is now utilized as a Community Center.
  • Renovated and re-opened the Ionia Theater with over 100,000 people utilizing annually.

Personal
A lifelong resident of Ionia, Dan and his wife Janet have been married since 1985. Together they have two children, John and Leigh.

Fourth Ward, Janice E. Gustafson

Fourth Ward, Council Member Janice E. GustafsonJanice has been employed with Independent Bank since 1981 and serves as Vice President Accounting Officer. Janice resides on Morse Street and is a lifelong resident of Ionia, graduating from Ionia High School in the class of 1977. Janice has one grown daughter Kelsey, who is a high school Spanish teacher. Janice is active in the community serving as the treasurer for the Ionia Area Chamber of Commerce, treasurer for the Friends of the Fred Meijer Clinton-Ionia-Shiawassee Rail Trail, and a member of the Ionia Community Band.

Fourth Ward, Troy A. Waterman

Troy was raised and lived in the Village of Muir. In 1991, Troy moved to Ionia and currently resides with his wife and family on Pearl Street. Troy and his wife Kerry Ann Waterman are the proud parents of three daughters; Morgan, Makenna, and Molly. Troy and Kerry keep very active with their children playing in different sports of basketball, track, pole vaulting, volleyball, and school functions. Troy's family are avid campers and enjoy spending time with their friends and family. Troy looks forward to serving his constituents as a City of Ionia council member.

City Calendar

City of Ionia City Calendar

114 North Kidd Street Map
Post Office Box 496
Ionia, Michigan 48846
Phone 616-527-4170

Fax 616-527-0810

Business Hours:
Monday - Friday, 8:00a - 4:00p
(Holiday exception)

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