Local News Archives

Van Buren Road Meeting

The Van Buren County Road Commission is hoping to fill in the public next week about its need for new road funding. The last of three public information meetings on an August ballot proposal for a new millage will be Tuesday, July 24 at the Van Buren Conference Center in Lawrence. The meeting will run from 6 to 8 p.m. The road commission tells us on hand will be engineers who will give a Power Point presentation regarding the proposed millage, along with a review of the current road conditions, the current road funding, and the intent of the millage. The road commission is asking voters for an additional three mills for 12 years. That would work out to about $15 per month for the average property owner. The Van Buren County Road Commission tells us road funding is grossly inadequate under old models still in place. Right now, about 67% of the roads in the county are classified as being in poor condition. Everyone is invited to next Tuesday’s meeting to hear more.. ...Read Full Story

Splash Pad For South Haven

Future visitors to South Haven’s South Beach will most likely be enjoying a splash pad. The public has asked for it and the city’s parks and recreation department is now working on engineering studies. That’s according to Assistant City Manager Kate Hosier. She spoke with WSJM News about the project.. ...Read Full Story

County Promotes Tax Accounts

Berrien County Treasurer Bret Witkowski is thanking Honor Credit Union for making an effort to promote its new property tax savings accounts. Witkowski tells WSJM News he worked with some local banks to create the accounts taxpayers can use to have a portion of their earnings put aside each month for property taxes later in the year.. ...Read Full Story

Pokagons Elect Tribal Chair

Matt Wesaw has been elected as the Tribal Council Chairman of the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi. Wesaw was picked for the post in the tribe’s general election on Saturday, July 14. This is Wesaw’s third election as tribal chairman with the previous elections being in 2008 and 2012. In October 2013, Wesaw announced his retirement from the council to become the executive director of the Michigan Department of Civil Rights. At that time, current Chairman John P. Warren was chosen in a special election to serve out the remainder of the term and was re-elected in 2015. With Wesaw now once again serving as tribal chairman, he’ll also serve as CEO of the Pokagon Gaming Authority Board, which oversees the band’s casino properties in New Buffalo, Hartford, Dowagiac, and South Bend. Also elected July 14 were Kelly Curran as secretary, Colin Wesaw as elders representative, and Gary Morseau, Sr. as member at large. The Pokagon band includes around 5,600 citizens.. ...Read Full Story

Mendel Center Volunteer Awards

The Mendel Center at Lake Michigan College is saluting its Volunteers of the Year. Mainstage Director Grace Kelmer tells us they held their annual volunteer appreciation dinner this month, and named Larry and Linda Becker as the recipients of the award. Kelmer tells us the Mendel Center relies on volunteers.. ...Read Full Story

Film Being Shot In St. Joseph

There another movie being shot around southwest Michigan. Filmmaker John Hancock, the director of Prancer and 2015’s The Looking Glass, could be seen with his crew in downtown St. Joseph on Thursday shooting scenes for The Girls of Summer. The movie is about a female country rock band, and the crew was out at the Howard Band Shell with about 50 extras. St. Joseph Mayor Michael Garey tells us the movie was shooting at Tiscornia Beach on Wednesday, and the crew will be back at the Silver Beach Carousel later. They’re also shooting around South Bend and Laporte. The movie is expected to premiere next year, and you can follow its progress at its Facebook page. Garey says the movie appears to be family-friendly, and he thinks it’s good promotion for the city. But don’t worry. Garey told us he doesn’t believe St. Joe is going Hollywood.. ...Read Full Story

Study On Possible Line 5 Spill

In theory, more than 400 miles of shoreline in Michigan, Wisconsin, and Canada would be impacted by a potential oil spill from Enbridge Energy’s Line 5 pipeline in the Straits of Mackinac. The report was put together by a Michigan Tech University professor. Michigan Department of Natural Resources spokesperson Ed Golder spoke with Michigan News Network about the report.. ...Read Full Story

Van Buren County Assault Arrest

A Decatur man is facing charges of assault with a dangerous weapon and possession of a firearm while under the influence following an incident early Friday in Sister Lakes. The Van Buren County Sheriff’s Department tells us deputies were sent to the Lakeview Inn around 1:40 a.m. on a report of an assault. They learned a 26-year-old man had been thrown out of the establishment due to his behavior. He then allegedly retrieved a loaded semi-automatic rifle from his vehicle, returned to the patio, and pointed it at the person who had removed him. That person and some bystanders wrestled the weapon from the man and held him until police arrived. The suspect has been identified as Alanzo Gasca. He was arrested and arraigned on Friday. His bond was set at $50,000.. ...Read Full Story

MI Dems Hold Final Debate

From the Associated Press — Democrats running for Michigan governor have held their second and final televised debate weeks before the Aug. 7 primary. Abdul El-Sayed, and Gretchen Whitmer sparred Thursday night over the influence of corporate money in politics. El-Sayed accuses Whitmer of using “Republican gimmicks” because an allied outside group airing pro-Whitmer ads can use “unlimited corporate money” and has not disclosed its donors. Whitmer counters that El-Sayed – who rejects corporate political action donations – has received $170,000 in donations from corporate executives, and “you can’t be half-pregnant on this one.” The sharp exchange punctuated a debate in which the candidates, including businessman Shri Thanedar, answered questions about business taxes, roads, tariffs and abortion rights.. ...Read Full Story