Local News Archives

LaSata Hosting Concealed Pistol License Training Course

State Representative Kim LaSata is offering a free training course for those interested in getting a Concealed Pistol License. She’s working with the Berrien County Sheriff’s Department on the program, which will be offered on Saturday, August 26. The course will take place at the Berrien County Patrol Office located in Benton Harbor, and will be run on a first come, first serve basis. It will be a five-hour classroom session followed by a three-hour range session with LaSata’s office providing lunch. Everyone who takes part should bring 100 rounds of ammunition and a reliable handgun of .380 caliber or larger. To sign up or find out more, contact the office of state Representative Kim LaSata. The number is at 517-373-5240.. ...Read Full Story

Warren Dunes To Host Meteor Viewing Party Next Week

Stargazers are invited to an event set for this month at state parks all over Michigan. The office of state Senator John Proos tells us Meteors & S’mores takes place on August 11 and 12. That’s next Friday and Saturday. The events are held every year to watch the Perseid meteor shower. Proos says it’s one of the best shooting star shows you can see. Warren Dunes State Park will host a viewing party on August 12 from 9 p.m. to midnight. They’ll provide complimentary s’mores. Everyone should meet at the south side of the third beach parking lot. Everyone’s advised to bring bug spray, snacks, and chairs. Anyone looking for more information should call Warren Dunes State Park at 426-4013.. ...Read Full Story

Pokagons, Hartford Library Team Up To Promote Reading

Thanks to the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi, parents who sign their kids up for library cards at the Hartford Library in the next week or so will be able to get a free trip to the Potawatomi Zoo in South Bend. The trip will take place Tuesday, August 15. The promotion is all part of the Hartford Public Library Card campaign. Any children or parents who get a new library card and borrow a book can take part in that free trip. The goal is to register more than 75 new children with library cards. Anyone looking for more information can contact the Hartford Library.. ...Read Full Story

New Videos Promote Berrien County

A series of videos has been produced by Berrien County to promote the area’s assets and attractions. Intended to generate economic development, new residents, and additional tourists, the videos can be found at BerrienCounty.orgWSJM’s own Pat Moody serves as the narrator for the introductory video. He tells viewers about the Lake Michigan shoreline, the area’s inland lakes, Amtrak routes, parks, and more. Other videos focus on community organizations, education, and agriculture. The videos were produced for the county by CGI Video. They’re on the front page of the county website, about halfway down on the left. Just click Video Tour of Berrien County.. ...Read Full Story

Stabenow Vows To Protect Great Lakes Funding

Senator Debbie Stabenow continues her attempts to protect millions of dollars of funding for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative. She told Michigan News Network this week the Trump administration may be proposing to cut the $300 million per year spent on the initiative, but members of Congress are fighting the idea.. ...Read Full Story

Four Winds Job Fair This Weekend

The Pokagon Band of Potawatomi’s Four Winds Casinos will hold a job fair this Saturday. It’ll be from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Four Winds Field in downtown South Bend. It’s the second of four job fairs scheduled to find roughly 1,200 new hires for the Pokagon South Bend property. Four Winds human resources will be on hand for the event. Many of the jobs are hospitality positions for the new property’s five restaurants and three bars, and some traditional casino positions also need to be filled. Everyone is welcome to the job fair.. ...Read Full Story

Boy Remains In Critical Condition Following Near Drowning

Police credit good Samaritans with saving the life of a four-year-old boy found in Lake Michigan off Warren Dunes State Park this week. The Berrien County Sheriff’s Department tells WSJM News Matthew Ramirez of Palatine, Illinois had been playing in the water with other children and family members on Tuesday around 7:45 p.m. Family members thought the boy had left the water and returned to the beach area, not realizing he was still in the lake. Good Samaritans later found him and started CPR. The boy was airlifted to Bronson Hospital in Kalamazoo, where he remains in critical condition. The sheriff’s department reminds all parents to keep a constant eye on their children when at the beach.. ...Read Full Story

Paw Paw State Police Seeking Volunteer For New Drug Program

Michigan State Police are expanding their Angel Program to the Paw Paw post. First Lieutenant Dale Hinz tells WSJM News Angels are volunteers who drive individuals who are struggling with an addiction to a treatment facility. He says police are increasingly backing away from the old method of locking people up for having a drug problem and focusing on getting them treatment instead.. ...Read Full Story

Half Of Mayoral Candidates In Detroit Have Criminal Past

(Detroit, MI – AP) – Half of Detroit’s eight mayoral candidates have been convicted of felony crimes involving drugs, assault or weapons. A “Detroit News” analysis shows that three of the contenders on next Tuesday’s primary ballot were charged with gun crimes, and two of them were charged for assault with intent to commit murder. Some of the offenses date back decades. The most recent was in 2008.. ...Read Full Story

M-40 Lane Closures Start Next Week

The Michigan Department of Transportation is advising drivers about some lane closures planned for M-140 in Van Buren County next week. On Monday, work begins on the road from County Road 665 to St. Joseph Street in Paw Paw. MDOT is doing some repairs to the roadway. The lane closures will remain in effect through Friday, September 15. You can stay on top of all of MDOT’s summer road projects with the agency’s app, MIDrive. It’s free on both iPhone and Android.. ...Read Full Story

Upton Talks Self-Driving Car Legislation

Congressman Fred Upton is hailing committee passage last week of legislation designed to help regulate self-driving cars without holding back their development. He tells WSJM News the PAVE Act allows the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to approve exemptions for self-driving cars from federal motor vehicle safety standards. He tells us this allows for smooth development of autonomous vehicle technology. ...Read Full Story

Roxy’s Hamburgers To Close

A staple of St. Joseph will soon be closing. Roxy’s Hamburgers on Cleveland Avenue has been serving up burger, fries, and milkshakes to the community for more than 50 years, but this is its last month. Roxy’s posted to its Facebook page last month, “Sad news today. August 25th will be the last day of Roxy Hamburgers. New owners decided not to keep it Roxy.” There’s no word yet on what Roxy’s new owners are planning for the property, but you’ve got until the 25th to have a burger at Roxy’s for the last time.. ...Read Full Story

One Arrested In BH Heroin Bust

A Benton Harbor man could soon be facing several drug charges following a heroin bust on Wednesday. The Southwest Enforcement Team tells us the arrest came at the conclusion of an eight month investigation into activity at 561 Heck Court. The team has received several tips about drug activity in one apartment at that address, and on Wednesday, the Berrien County Sheriff’s Department arrested Derrious Antron Fields for some outstanding warrants. The enforcement team then searched the apartment, and says it found and seized heroin packaged for sale, marijuana, and some cash. It’s now seeking drug charges against the suspect.. ...Read Full Story

Preparations Underway For Berrien County Youth Fair

Preparations are well underway for the 2017 Berrien County Youth Fair. This is the 72nd year for the fair, and this time around the theme is “Fairadise.” From August 14 through the 19, more than 125,000 people are expected to stop by the fairgrounds in Berrien Springs. Fair Director Karen Klug tells WSJM News they’ll have something on the grandstand every night, including a demolition derby, live music, and tractor pulls.. ...Read Full Story

State Capitol Getting $70 Million In Renovations

From the Associated Press — The grounds at Michigan’s Capitol will be under construction for the next two years as part of $70 million in improvements to its mechanical and electrical systems. MLive reports the Capitol building in Lansing will be open during the Capitol Infrastructure Upgrade Project, but the west side will be closed. Different sections of the building will be cordoned off throughout the
process. John Truscott, vice chairman of the Michigan Capitol Commission, says it’s the first time in 30 years that the building’s heating and cooling systems, electrical systems and other inner workings have been slated for an upgrade. The state legislature earlier approved funding for the work. Truscott says switching to more energy-efficient systems will eventually lead to a significant savings in energy bills for Capitol operations.. ...Read Full Story

Jim McCloughan Welcomed Home

Fresh from receiving the Medal of Honor at the White House, James McCloughan was greeted by dozens of well-wishers at Gerald R. Ford International in Grand Rapids late Wednesday night. His flight was four hours late, but they stuck it out anyway. McCloughan said it was the first time he had ever gotten a welcome home ceremony. He thanked everyone for coming out, and will be embarking soon on an outreach tour. He was awarded the nation’s highest military award for valor this week by President Trump for saving the lives of ten men during a battle in Vietnam, despite being wounded himself.. ...Read Full Story

President Declares Emergency In Parts On Michigan

From the Associated Press — President Donald Trump has made a disaster declaration for four Michigan counties that sustained widespread damage amid severe storms and flash flooding in June. The announcement Wednesday makes federal funding available to residents and
business owners in Bay, Gladwin, Isabella and Midland counties for things such as temporary housing, repairs and low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses. The assistance also will aid the Saginaw Chippewa Tribe within Isabella County. Trump’s declaration also means communities statewide are eligible to participate in a program to help reduce or eliminate long-term risk to people and property from natural hazards. Governor Rick Snyder had asked Trump for the disaster declaration.. ...Read Full Story

Van Buren Rep Leads Gathering Of Local Officials

Mattawan State Representative Beth Griffin has held her first local officials meeting. She tells us it’s a tradition started by her predecessors to gather representatives of agencies that affect the lives of residents all over southwest Michigan. She tells WSJM News a big topic of discussion at the meeting this week was education funding.. ...Read Full Story

Gray Wolves Remain On Endangered Species List

Gray wolves in the western Great Lakes will remain on the endangered species list. That word from the US Circuit Court of Appeals in Washington, which overturned a previous ruling from US Fish and Wildlife Services. Noah Greenwald with the Center for Biological Diversity told Michigan News Network one of the main faults the court found in the previous ruling is that gray wolves are gone from more than 90% of their range across the country.. ...Read Full Story