Local News Archives

Upton Talks Recreational Dredging

Congressman Fred Upton is hailing the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Fiscal Year 2018 Work Plan because it includes money to dredge recreational harbors in southwest Michigan. He tells WSJM News the weather this year has left those harbors in need of some cleaning up.. ...Read Full Story

Group Launches Ad Blitz Against Whitmer

From the Associated Press — The conservative group Americans for Prosperity is spending nearly $1.7 million on a TV ad criticizing Democratic gubernatorial candidate Gretchen Whitmer, saying she backed policies of former Governor Jennifer
Granholm and voted for tax increases as a legislator. The 30-second ad will begin airing Thursday and run for three weeks. Americans for Prosperity is backed by the billionaire Koch brothers. The ad points to Whitmer’s 2007 votes to raise taxes to address a budget deficit. It’s being released the same week a pro-Whitmer group launched an ad introducing her to voters before August’s primary. A Whitmer spokesman said Wednesday the Koch brothers are attacking Whitmer because they know she is the strongest candidate to beat Republican candidate Bill Schuette in November. He says Whitmer repeatedly took on Granholm in Lansing.. ...Read Full Story

Journeyman, Three Oaks Reach Compromise On Wastewater

The village of Three Oaks has until mid-September to figure out how its sewer system can be improved to handle the wastewater discharge from Journeyman Distillery and future businesses in town. Journeyman co-founder Bill Welter reminded the crowd and the village council that he started the business during the Great Recession, and the village knew about the potential issues with the wastewater treatment when he opened.. ...Read Full Story

Bills Clear Way For Online Gambling

From the Associated Press — Bills that have cleared an initial legislative hurdle would legalize online gambling in Michigan and start the process toward possibly also allowing internet sports betting in the wake of a U.S. Supreme Court decision. The state House late Tuesday voted 68-40 in favor of the legislation, which is not expected to be considered by the Senate until September at the earliest after lawmakers adjourned for a summer break. An 8 percent tax would be collected from wagers, minus winnings paid out – which would be less than a 19 percent tax now paid by Detroit’s three casinos. Those casinos could seek an internet gambling license. The state’s 23 tribal casinos could conduct online gambling if they secure authorization from the state through a compact.. ...Read Full Story

Heart Of Cook Grants

33 southwest Michigan non-profit organizations have been selected for Heart of Cook grants this year. The Berrien Community Foundation tells us more than $53,000 is included in the 2018 plan. The Heart of Cook is a corporate-advised fund held by the community foundation, supported with money from the Cook nuclear power plant. Berrien Community Foundation President Lisa Cripps Downey tells WSJM News a committee made up of Cook employees reviewed 85 applications this year that totaled more than $330,000.. ...Read Full Story

Trustee Comments On Coach Legal Action

The Benton Harbor Area Schools Board of Education’s decision to seek legal action against former football coach Elliot Uzelac and former Superintendent Shelly Walker is based both on what they said and the circumstances under which they said it. Following Tuesday’s vote to seek action against the two former district officials, Trustee Joseph Taylor told our newsgathering partners at WNDU NewsCenter 16 that Walker couldn’t weigh in on the Uzelac situation.. ...Read Full Story

Business Donation To Humane Society

Albemarle Corporation of South Haven has made a $15,000 donation to the Al-Van Humane Society for critical medical care and life saving emergencies for animals and to finish work on the new adoption center on Blue Star Highway in South Haven. Albemarle has donated over $40,000 to the shelter’s general operating fund over the past six years. The Al-Van Humane Society was founded in 1968 and is a no-kill non-profit welfare organization providing emergency food and shelter for homeless pets. Al-Van continues to seek corporate donations for shelter programs. Contact Jennifer Nuernberg at 637-5062 for more information.. ...Read Full Story

Senior Services Seeking Millage Increase

The senior population is the United States is growing rapidly and funding for senior services has not kept up. That’s why one organization is seeking a millage increase this summer. Senior Services of Van Buren County Director Diane Rigozzi tells WSJM News she hopes voters will help out with funding at the ballot box in August.. ...Read Full Story

Possible Phone/Fraud Scam In Berrien County

A warning is going out from the Berrien County Sheriff’s Department about a possible phone scam or fraud. A Coloma resident told officers a call came in at 8 a.m. Tuesday from 983-7111, which is the number for Berrien County government. The caller said he was from the civil department and said he needed to meet the woman at her home to serve legal papers, and then provided a toll-free number for the woman to call and avoid being served. The sheriff’s department says the call was not legit, and says if you get such a call, hang up and call police. They add you should not give out any personal information. It’s believed the scammer had cloned the county’s phone number to make the call.. ...Read Full Story

Rep. Pagel: Overall Budget Good, But Lacking For Schools

Overall, state Representative Dave Pagel says the Fiscal Year 2019 budget that’s been sent to Governor Snyder this week is good. He tells WSJM News that there’s always something that someone can find in the plan they’re not happy with, and for him, it’s the education budget. While the foundation grant for schools has been going up, the Berrien Springs Republican says it’s not keeping up with the rate of inflation.. ...Read Full Story