Local News Archives

Chikaming Township Seeks Parks Input From Public

Those who use the trails, parks, and nature preserves of Chikaming Township are being asked to fill out a survey on their parks needs as the Chikaming Township Parks Board puts together its next master plan. Board President Debra Hall Kaylor tells WSJM News they want to hear ideas and opinions from anyone who appreciates the parks of Chikaming Township.. ...Read Full Story

Hundreds Turn Out For Veteran’s Funeral

Hundreds of people turned out Wednesday for the funeral service of a Niles veteran who passed away with no family. Brown Funeral Home and Cremation Services put out a public call for people to attend the funeral of Wayne Wilson at Silverbrook Cemetery, and word must have really gotten around. The cemetery was packed with people who wanted to pay their respects. Morgan Friend knew Wayne Wilson and spoke with WSBT about him.. ...Read Full Story

Cooling Station Opens In South Haven

The Cooling Station is open at the Bronson Wellness Center in South Haven. Heat related illnesses are possible for the rest of the week, and anyone living or visiting the area can come into the club free of charge and get cooled off with air conditioning and cold water. Director Bryan Heisler tells WSJM News it’s a way to stay safe during the hot weather.. ...Read Full Story

Disability Network To Honor Whirlpool With Award

The Disability Network of Southwest Michigan will hold its annual celebration of the Americans with Disabilities Act this month, and as part of the festivities, Whirlpool will be honored. The Disability Network’s Kristen Potts tells WSJM News the organization giving out its first ever Community Inclusion Award to the company. The board felt Whirlpool was a natural pick for it.. ...Read Full Story

Deadline Approaching For Student Aid Program

The deadline to apply for student aid through the state’s Tuition Incentive Program, or TIP, is approaching. Michigan Office of Post-Secondary Financial Planning Director Anne Wohlfert tells WSJM News TIP provides tuition to students who qualified for Medicaid for at least 24 months in a 36 month window since age nine.. ...Read Full Story

City Commission Discusses Appointments

Benton Harbor City Commissioners are talking about how appointments to local boards are made. At this week’s commission meeting, an appointment to the Library Board hit a snag when Mayor Pro Tem Duane Seats asked how openings on local boards are publicized. He wondered if the same people are allowed to serve on multiple boards too many times.. ...Read Full Story

South Haven City Manager Talks Lifeguards

There’s a petition effort underway to convince the city of South Haven to add lifeguards at its public beaches. The change.org petition as of Tuesday afternoon had more than 600 signatures following the weekend drowning of a 13-year-old boy in Lake Michigan. South Haven City Manager Brian Dissette tells WSJM News city leadership opted to no longer have lifeguards about 15 years ago.. ...Read Full Story

Upton Votes To Condemn Trump Tweets

Congressman Fred Upton is among the four Republican members of the U.S. House to vote with Democrats to condemn controversial tweets made this past weekend by President Trump. The House vote on Tuesday was on a resolution which “strongly condemns President Donald Trump’s racist comments that have legitimized and increased fear and hatred of new Americans and people of color.” The weekend tweets were about Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts, and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan. The president tweeted, “Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came.” The Democrat-controlled House approved the resolution against Trump’s words with support from only four Republicans. In addition to Congressman Upton, Republicans Will Hurd of Texas, Susan Brooks of Indiana, and Brian Fitzpatrick of Pennsylvania voted with Democrats. Congressman Justin Amash of Michigan, who recently resigned from the Republican Party, also voted yes. Upton issued a statement Monday saying he was appalled by Trump’s words.. ...Read Full Story

LMC Hires Dean Of Student Affairs

Now on the job at Lake Michigan College is Nygil Likely, LMC’s new dean of student affairs. LMC says Likely has been brought in to help enhance the student experience by giving students someone to go to when they need help. Likely told WSJM News about some of the challenges many college students face.. ...Read Full Story

Huge Net Used To Pull Asian Carp Out Of Illinois Dam

From the Associated Press — Fishermen with a net are removing thousands of Asian carp from Lake Decatur dam in central Illinois.
The Herald and Review reports that the effort began Monday, days after the state was told that many fish were gathering there. The invasive species will be trucked to a company in Bushnell, Illinois, which will process them for fish meal and fish oil. Kevin Irons of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources says some fish appear to be 20 to 30 pounds. The net is 30 feet deep. The Sangamon River is impounded to form Lake Decatur in Decatur. A barrier prevents Asian carp from jumping into the lake. In May, The Army Corps of Engineers approved a $778 million plan to block the carp from reaching the Great Lakes. The fish can cause serious damage by dominating native fish for food and space.. ...Read Full Story

Utility Offers Tips To Reduce Summer Energy Usage

Consumers Energy is issuing tips to its customers on how to reduce their electric bills now that summer is here and many are turning on their air conditioning. Spokesperson Brian Wheeler tells WSJM News forecasters are predicting this month to be one of the hottest in six years. With that in mind, he says there are very small sacrifices you can make to save.. ...Read Full Story

Man Busted For Bogus Bomb Threat

An arrest has been made in a bogus bomb threat that was made to the Cass County Courthouse last month. The Cass County Sheriff’s Department tells us the threat was phoned into 911 the morning of June 21 and caused the place to be evacuated while it was searched. Since then, deputies and detectives from the Cass County Sheriff’s Department have been following up on leads from calls from the public and other sources. They’ve now announced the arrest of Patrick Kyle McMeeken in the case. He’s charged with making a false threat of terrorism, using a computer to commit a crime, and conspiracy to commit obstruction of justice. He’s also being charged as a habitual offender. If convicted, McMeeken faces up to a life sentence. The sheriff’s department asks anyone with more information on the threat to call them.. ...Read Full Story

Perrigo Announces Big Arts Donation

The Perrigo Company Charitable Foundation has announced a donation of $50,000 to the Saugatuck Center for the Arts to support an entire year of arts education programming in Allegan, Kent, and Ottawa counties. A check presentation was held Monday. The Saugatuck Center for the Arts says the drug maker’s contribution will help support programs that include the Children’s Film Festival, Artists in Residence, Growing Young Artists, and Project Based Learning. Each program aims to make an impact on the lives of kids. Since 2007, Perrigo has provided nearly $300,000 to the Saugatuck Center for the Arts. Perrigo CEO Murray Kessler says improving the well-being of its communities is a key component of Perrigo’s corporate vision.. ...Read Full Story

Peters Slams Trump Tweets

President Donald Trump entered  into a rift with a group of liberal Democratic congresswomen, including Michigan Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib, over the weekend. In tweets Sunday, Trump portrays the lawmakers as foreign-born troublemakers who should go back to their home countries. U.S. Senator Gary Peters calls the tweets terrible.. ...Read Full Story

South Bend International Airport Celebrating New Inspection Station Today

The South Bend International Airport will celebrate the opening of a new federal inspection station on Tuesday. Officials from U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the Indiana Economic Development Corporation, and from St. Joseph County, Indiana are slated to be on hand for the grand opening. The celebration will also include a special announcement and the first arriving aircraft. The South Bend International Airport is keeping its lips sealed on what the opening of the new inspections station will mean for the facility until after federal officials come to town. We’ll know more this afternoon.. ...Read Full Story

Town Hall On Roads, Auto Insurance This Week

State Representative Pauline Wendzel is holding a town hall this week on road funding and auto insurance reform. Wendzel tells WSJM News those are the two topics she and other state lawmakers hear about the most. On hand for Thursday’s meeting will be lawmakers who worked on the recently-passed auto insurance reform bill.. ...Read Full Story

PETA: Billboard Near Site Of Livestock Truck Crash Now Up

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals says it has put up its billboard along I-94 near Benton Harbor to memorialize about ten pigs that died in the crash of a livestock truck on June 28. The crash happened at Napier Avenue and I-94, and PETA’s billboard nearby shows a pig with the words “I’m ME, Not MEAT. See the Individual. Go Vegan.” PETA’s Sadie Buckles tells WSJM News the message is that animals like pigs should not be packed into trucks to be hauled off to death factories.. ...Read Full Story

Rotary Taking Grant Applications

The St. Joseph-Benton Harbor Rotary Club Foundation is now taking applications for its 2019 grants. The Rotary Foundation says a total of $60,000 will be awarded this year, with all recipients to be determined by its board of directors. To be eligible, a grant request must be for a minimum of $5,000 and must be submitted by a non-profit or government unit in the St. Joseph and Benton Harbor area. The Rotary is looking for programs that provide better opportunities for youth and special needs populations. Since 1980, the St. Joseph-Benton Harbor Rotary Club Foundation has awarded more than $891,000 in grants in the area. 2018 recipients included Kinexus, which got $7,500 to make improvements to the YouthBuild training facility, the Berrien County Council for children, which received $10,000 to purchase new sound equipment at the Children’s Advocacy Center, and the Boys and Girls Club of Benton Harbor, which was awarded $10,000 for a social-emotional program. The grant application deadline is September 20.
. ...Read Full Story

Mayoral Candidates Take Part In Debate

The six candidates running for mayor of Benton Harbor have squared off for the first time in a debate. Speaking at the WSJM studio Monday, a topic of discussion was economic development and making sure investment in the community is also investment in its people. Candidate Jamie Davis said, too often, there will be developments that don’t result in benefits for residents.. ...Read Full Story