Nonetheless, in May Dexter residents voted 460 to 408 to continue the cityhood process. "It was surprising there was such a small turnout," says Smith. "But some people didn't know there was a vote, and others didn't know the issues, while some thought it was already a done deal and didn't know they were being given a chance to vote."
Small as it was, May's vote showed the stark divide between east and west. The east-side precinct that includes the new Dexter Crossing and Huron Farms developments tilted slightly against heading down the path to a city charter, 373 to 336, while the west-side precinct, including the new Westridge subdivision, approved it overwhelmingly, 124 to 35. That advanced the process to this November's election, when voters nine of thirteen candidates to write the charter.
Smith ran for a seat on the charter committee--because he wants to shape the document, not because he favors cityhood. "So many people you talk to here, people like myself, we like the small-town feel," he says. "People move here for the quaintness of the village, and that's something we don't want to see taken away."