Local News Archives

Man Accidentally Shot In Cass County

Police are looking into possible charges after a Cassopolis man was accidentally shot on Monday. The Cass County Sheriff’s Department tells our newsroom deputies were called out to a home in Milton Township around 12:30 p.m. on a report of a man with a gunshot wound. They got there to find 42-year-old Justin Anderson with a non-life threatening injury. Turns out Anderson was hit by a shot fired by his neighbor about 500 to 600 yards away. The neighbor had been target shooting when one of his shots missed the backstop. The bullet went through some woods before it hit the victim. He’s now recovering and police are looking into whether to charge the neighbor. They remind everyone to use caution when target shooting.. ...Read Full Story

University Of Michigan Announces Projects To Fight Poverty

From the Associated Press — The University of Michigan is announcing a series of projects as part of its new initiative to address poverty. The effort called “Poverty Solutions” will explore and test models to ease the effects of poverty and broadly share that knowledge. The Ann Arbor school on Tuesday is revealing details of nine projects funded through the program with
grants totaling $200,000. The projects include efforts to alert low-income homeowners about an exemption to reduce their property taxes. Others include employing health workers in neighborhoods to help residents and collaborative community-academic research partnerships. The program is co-sponsored by the Detroit Urban Research Center, a partnership among the U-M schools of Public Health, Nursing and Social Work; the Detroit Health Department; Henry Ford Health System; and nine community-based organizations.. ...Read Full Story

GM To Invest One Billion in U.S. Plants

No details yet but General Motors will announce plans today to invest a billion dollars in its U.S. plants today, something it’s reportedly been planning for months. The plans will reportedly maintain or create about a thousand jobs.  Some of the money will go into Michigan plants, but beyond that we have no detail.  Edmunds-dot-com Senior Analyst Jessica Caldwell says it reportedly has nothing to do with tweets from Donald Trump threatening to impose 35% tariffs on vehicles made in Canada or Mexico. She says the Trump tweets may be changing the way they deliver the good news, but not the news itself.. ...Read Full Story

Charity Gives Out Record Amount Of Food In 2016

Despite the economic recovery, many southwest Michigan families continue to need food assistance and Feeding America West Michigan tells us it’s been able to step up and meet that demand. Spokesperson Andrew Steiner tells WSJM News the organization gave out a record amount in Berrien, Cass, and Van Buren counties in 2016.. ...Read Full Story

LMC To Interview Finalists For President This Week

Anyone interested in meeting the finalists for the job of president at Lake Michigan College will have a chance to do so this week. LMC will have each of the three finalists in town to tour all of its campuses and meet with the community. Interviews are also planned. On Wednesday, Dr. Rebekah Woods will be interviewed at the Mendel Center North Training Room at 5:30 p.m. Then on Thursday, Dr. Jon Mandrell will be at the same place at the same time for his interview, while Dr. Trevor Kubatzke has an interview set for 5:30 on Friday at the Mendel Center South Seminar Room. Anyone who attends is invited to submit their thoughts to the board of trustees through January 23. The three finalists were picked out of a total 92 applications submitted.. ...Read Full Story

Betsy Devos Confirmation Hearing Tuesday

From the Associated Press — Betsy DeVos is widely expected to push for expanding school choice programs if confirmed as education secretary. Such a move is certain to bring pushback from teachers unions. Democrats and civil rights activists also are raising concerns about how her conservative Christian beliefs might impact minority and LGBT students. A Senate committee begins considering her nomination Tuesday. Her financial questionnaire shows DeVos has donated to the political campaigns of at least four committee members. The committee chairman, Senator Lamar Alexander, of Tennessee, says DeVos will work to ensure equal access to a high quality education. DeVos spent the past two decades advancing charter schools. She also has pushed for vouchers, which use public money to help low-income families send their kids to private and religious schools of their choice.. ...Read Full Story

Michigan Guide Helps You Pronounce 2,200 People, Places Or Things

From the Associated Press — The state of Michigan wants to help residents and visitors pronounce the names of 2,200 people, places and things in or connected to the Great Lakes State – from Aaliyah (uh-LEE’-uh) to Zilwaukee (zil-WAW’-kee). The Michigan Braille and Talking Book Library recently created the “You Say it How in Michigan?” guide, with audio and phonetic pronunciations. Officials say it was developed for audio book production for the blind and visually impaired but can benefit anyone.The guide can help newcomers sound like natives, such as when it advises accenting the second syllable of the Lansing-area community of Charlotte (shar-LOT). But in some cases the list recognizes residents are of two minds, such as when it allows for Michigan’s biggest city to be pronounced “DEE’-troit” or “de-TROIT’.”. ...Read Full Story

Car Hits Tree In Millberg

The Berrien County Sheriff’s Department tells us a car has hit a tree in Millberg at the intersection of South Street and North Highland. According to dispatchers, there are not believed to be any injuries. That said, roads are slick – drive safely!. ...Read Full Story

Thousands Show Up For Sanders Health Care Rally In Michigan

An estimated crowd of over 10,000 people showed up for a rally in suburban Detroit where U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders spoke in support of President Obama’s signature health care law. Sanders was joined by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York and Michigan’s two U.S. Senators, Debbie Stabenow and Gary Peters. It was one of several rallies around the country by Democrats yesterday ahead of President-elect Donald Trump’s inauguration. Trump has promised a speedy repeal and replacement of the law that was one of Obama’s proudest achievements.. ...Read Full Story

Gas Prices Down 18¢ Locally, Drop 10¢ Statewide

Gas prices in the Benton Harbor-St. Joseph area are down 18¢ in the past week according to Triple-A Michigan’s latest survey. The auto club says statewide, we’re down a dime to an average of $2.40 a gallon. Locally, they put the average at $2.31, but you can find gas as low as $2.15 in Benton Harbor and $2.17 in St. Joseph. Go a bit north, and GasBuddy says South Haven prices are as low as $2.10, which is the lowest in West Michigan. According to Triple-A, Flint has the state’s lowest prices at $2.30, while up in Marquette they’re shelling out $2.52 a gallon with the state’s highest prices. Statewide, our prices are up 61¢ from this time last year.. ...Read Full Story

Whirlpool Praises Trade Commission Ruling

Whirlpool Corporation’s chief executive says a recent decision by the U.S. International Trade Commission is a big win for workers at its washing machine factory in northern Ohio. The commission ruled last week that two foreign manufacturers made washing machines in China and then sold them in the United States at less than fair value. The ruling means the companies must start paying duties on washers made in China and imported to the United States. Both Samsung and LG say they disagree with the decision. Whirlpool chief executive Jeff Fettig says it’s a gratifying win for the 3,000 employees at the company’s factory in the Sandusky County city of Clyde. The appliance maker based in Benton Harbor also has Ohio operations in Marion, Findlay, Ottawa and Greenville.. ...Read Full Story

Upton Working To Help Protect St. Joseph Bluff

Congressman Fred Upton is hoping his office can help keep a rail line that runs along the bluff in St. Joseph safe. St. Joe City Commissioners have reached out to him, asking him to contact CSX Railroad about its property around 2405 Old Lakeshore Road. The sea wall down below the bluff has failed, and neighbors fear the bluff itself could collapse.. ...Read Full Story

“Great Kindness Challenge” Coming Up At SJ Schools

St. Joseph Public Schools is gearing up to celebrate kindness this month. The district has announced all five of its schools will take part in the Great Kindness Challenge the week of January 23. The challenge calls on students and staff alike to commit to doing something kind for someone else each day of the week. The acts could include complimenting someone or leaving them a thank you note. Kids for Peace created the Great Kindness Challenge in 2012 to encourage more positive learning environments. In 2016, more than 5 million kids took part, resulting in 250 million acts of kindness.. ...Read Full Story

Upton Foundation Taking Applications For Big Idea Grants

The Frederick S. Upton Foundation is seeking some big ideas for a grant. It says its BIG IDEA grant will go to a Berrien County non-profit that has an ambitious plan to improve the lives of others. It should also be something that can be sustained into the future. The Upton Foundation is giving out $50,000 with the grant. Any non-profits with ideas can find out more at BerrienCommunity.org/Upton. The deadline to apply is April 10.. ...Read Full Story

Survey Looks At The Most Annoying Phone Calls

A new survey takes a look at the top five most annoying phone calls. The poll from YouGov was done on behalf of CPR Call Blocker, and finds the number one most annoying nuisance calls are automated robocalls, with 66% of respondents citing it. Coming in second are credit card and loan offers, at 28%, followed by charitable causes, with 23%, long distance providers, at 11%, and lottery or sweepstakes offers at 10%. About a third of U.S. respondents reported getting 20 or more unwanted calls per month. Also, about 13% of Americans have fallen for a scam on the phone.. ...Read Full Story

OutCenter Open House Next Week

Next week will bring an open house at the OutCenter in Benton Harbor for everyone to come out and learn about the organization’s plans for 2017. OutCenter Board Chair Todd Dockerty tells WSJM News this is just kicking off what will be a busy year.. ...Read Full Story

Lake Michigan College Annual Martin Luther King Celebration Set For Monday

For the 22nd year, Lake Michigan College is planning to mark Martin Luther King, Jr. Day on Monday with a breakfast and awards ceremony. The event will be at the Mendel Center starting at 7:45 a.m. and will culminate with the announcement of the 16th annual Martin Luther King Jr. Diversity Award. Speakers at the breakfast will include Congressman Fred Upton, and there will be music from the All God’s Children Community Choir and the LMC Concert Choir. The next day, LMC will also host its Race Relations Council Forum with a theme of “Promoting Racial Equality in Education.” It’ll be at the Brown Lecture Hall from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. It will feature four panelists and a question and answer period.. ...Read Full Story

Snyder Hoping Healthy Michigan Program Can Be Preserved

Governor Rick Snyder is sending a team to Washington with the hope that something can be done to salvage healthcare for about 613,000 Michigan residents. Michigan News Network reports Snyder has determined the state’s Healthy Michigan program is working, helping all of those Michiganders who weren’t previously insured get the care they need. With the Trump administration about to take office and Congress moving full speed ahead on an Affordable Care Act repeal, Snyder is dispatching Michigan Budget Director Al Pscholka to the capital to convince the Trump administration that Healthy Michigan and programs like it should be preserved. Congressional leaders have said they will consult with governors around the country as they come up with the promised Affordable Care Act replacement.. ...Read Full Story

Blossomland Learning Center Gets Arts Grant

Berrien RESA’s Blossomland Learning Center will be able to enhance its arts programming thanks to a grant from the Michigan Council of Arts and Cultural Affairs. The $1,500 Michigan Youth Arts Grant will be used to buy drums for the music therapy program. Blossomland Learning Center caters to the learning disabled, and it says group drumming is a great way to teach students about working in groups. In all, the new grant will enable the learning center to buy nine drums.. ...Read Full Story

Upton Talks Affordable Care Act Repeal

With a repeal of the Affordable Care Act already in motion, Congressman Fred Upton predicts many of its provisions will remain in place when Republicans come up with their replacement plan. He tells WSJM News there’s a lot of work ahead on the Obamacare alternative, but some of its more popular components should be salvaged.. ...Read Full Story