Local News Archives

New Buffalo Lands Grant For Waterfront Master Plan

The development of New Buffalo’s waterfront will be a hot topic later this year thanks to the city receiving a $51,000 grand from USDA Rural Development to cover nearly all the costs involved with developing a master plan and do preliminary engineering work. City Manager Dave Richards tells WSJM News the city wants to hear from as many residents as possible once they begin holding open houses and putting out online surveys.. ...Read Full Story

Stabenow Backing Impeachment Inquiry

Senator Debbie Stabenow of Michigan says she would back House Democrats if they launch an impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump. The fourth-term Democrat said in a written statement Monday that former special counsel Robert Mueller’s report about Russian interference in the 2016 election “describes extremely serious instances of the president of the United States trying to obstruct justice.” She says “no one is above the law.” Politico first reported Stabenow’s position. About 100 Democrats in the 435-member House now favor opening an impeachment inquiry. House committees have been investigating Trump and filing lawsuits to obtain information. Even if the House voted to impeach Trump, the Republican-run Senate would likely acquit him. Michigan’s other senator, Democrat Gary Peters, is up for re-election in 2020 and has not backed impeachment proceedings.. ...Read Full Story

St. Joseph Bringing Back Former Finance Director

The St. Joseph City Commission is bringing back a city hall veteran for a few more years. Former city finance director Deb Koroch is returning to that position following her retirement in June 2016. Koroch had been brought back on an interim basis this year after her successor, Sara McCallum, left for a new job in Ann Arbor. The city commission search committee of Mayor Pro Tem Laura Goos and Commissioner Peggy Getty met with city staff on Friday to go over the applications for the job, and felt no one could stack up to the experience Koroch would bring with her 16 years with the city.. ...Read Full Story

Red Cross Offering Gift Cards With Blood Donations

As the Red Cross grapples with another emergency blood shortage, it’s teaming up with Amazon in the hope of enticing more people to donate. The Red Cross says those who give blood between now and August 29 will receive a $5 Amazon gift card via email. While a $5 gift card doesn’t sound like much, the gift from Amazon amounts to $1 million for the Red Cross. The organization says it’s down to a less than two day supply of type O blood as people donate less during the summer. Anyone who wants to give can check out the Red Cross Blood App, call 1-800-RED-CROSS, or go to RedCrossBlood.org.. ...Read Full Story

Free Lunches For South Haven Students This Year

Students at South Haven Public Schools will be able to get free lunches this coming school year. South Haven Public Schools Child Nutrition Director June Altom tells WSJM News enough of the district’s students this year qualify for free lunches under federal guidelines, therefore opening the program to the whole district. She says this can help make sure more of the kids eat healthy.. ...Read Full Story

Glad Peach Fest In Coloma This Week

The Glad Peach Festival is set for this week in Coloma. It starts Friday at noon, and will run through Sunday evening. Peach Fest President Julie Pupedis tells WSJM News the festival started as a victory celebration following World War II. At first, it was just a flower show, but over the years it’s grown.. ...Read Full Story

State Offers Financial Aid Advice

With high school graduates across Michigan preparing to head off to college, the Michigan Department of Treasury is offering them some advice on seeking financial aid. Office of Post-Secondary Financial Planning Director Anne Wohlfert tells WSJM News students need to know about the the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA. That’s the first step. But don’t just assume a loan is the only way to go.. ...Read Full Story

Five Governors Call On Candidates To Aid Great Lakes

From the Associated Press — Five Democratic governors of states in the Great Lakes region want candidates in next year’s presidential election to support a plan for protecting their freshwater resources. Led by Gretchen Whitmer of Michigan, the governors Monday proposed a six-point platform that seeks increases in federal spending on water treatment infrastructure and environmental cleanups.
Whitmer told The Associated Press the plan’s release was timed to draw attention to issues affecting the lakes ahead of this week’s Democratic presidential debates in Detroit. But she said the governors also hoped for support from Republican President Donald Trump. In addition to money for drinking water and wastewater system upgrades, the plan calls for battling invasive species, harmful algae blooms and pollution from toxic chemicals, as well as building another shipping lock at Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan.. ...Read Full Story

State Representative Defends State Buildings Flag Bill

A state representative is defending her bill introduced last week to restrict what flags can be flown on state buildings to the U.S. flag, the state flag, and the official flag of the governor. Republican Lynn Afendoulis of Grand Rapids introduced the bill after hearing complaints after Governor Whitmer had a rainbow Pride flag on the Romney Building during Pride month in June. She told Michigan’s Big Show its about keeping state buildings from becoming special interest billboards and she’s not homophobic.. ...Read Full Story

Democrats Hit Detroit Ahead Of This Week’s Debates

Twenty of the Democrats seeking their party’s presidential nomination will be on the Fox Theatre stage in Detroit over two nights this week for the second series of debates, broadcast on CNN. Several of them are already making the rounds in the Motor City, with Washington Governor Jay Inslee taking time Monday to unveil his plan to fight climate change at an appearance in southwest Detroit.. ...Read Full Story

Benton Harbor Residents Reminded To Take Steps To Keep Lead Out Of Water

Residents of the city of Benton Harbor are being reminded about the importance of installing filters in their homes to prevent against lead contamination. The city released information Friday afternoon that the water supply remains under a continuation of the Action Level Exceedance of 15 parts per billion, which took effect in October of last year. The Berrien County Health Department has partnered with the city to get the word out, and spokeswoman Gillian Conrad says the new reminders are being issued out of an abundance of caution.. ...Read Full Story

Dangerous Swimming Conditions On Lake Michigan North Of South Haven

Planning to go to a Lake Michigan beach Monday? The National Weather Service says you should think about another day. Dangerous swimming conditions are expected at beaches north of South Haven. Separately, swimming is discouraged south of South Haven down into Indiana along the shore. Waves could be 3 feet or higher. A 43-year-old man who was struggling in high waves and strong current Saturday drowned in Lake Michigan in Ottawa County. The sheriff’s department says Steven Davis of Holland Township was brought to shore after 4 p.m. in Park Township. A red flag was flying nearby at Holland State Park, a signal that conditions were dangerous at the time. The Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project says at least 27 people have drowned in Lake Michigan this year, up from 15 at this time last year.. ...Read Full Story

State Police Identify Man Who Died While Kayaking In Paw Paw River

Michigan State Police are identifying the man who died while kayaking with his wife in the Paw Paw River Sunday evening as 42-year-old Chad Whittington of Coloma. The couple had launched their kayak from Hayes Park in Watervliet and took a break to swim, and that’s when she told police he became distressed and struggled in the water. She got him partially to shore and called 9-1-1, but nothing could be done. First responders were unable to revive Whittington, who was pronounced dead at the scene on the banks of the river in the 71-hundred block of Red Arrow Highway. An autopsy is being done today at Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo to determine the cause of death.. ...Read Full Story

Motorcyclist Killed In Weekend Cass County Crash

A Three Rivers man is dead after a crash involving his motorcycle and a car in Cass County. The sheriff’s department says it happened Saturday afternoon in Porter Township when Tyler Hershberger was on US-12 and collided with a car driven by a 16-year-old that was pulling out of a driveway. The impact sent Hershberger off his bike, and he was pronounced dead at the scene. He was wearing a helmet, and the teen driver was also buckled up. Police are continuing to investigate.. ...Read Full Story

Man Dies In Kayak Accident On Paw Paw River

There aren’t many details as yet, but Michigan State Police are investigating the death of a man on the Paw Paw River in Berrien County on Sunday. He and his wife were kayaking when something went wrong according to our newsgathering partners at WSBT-22. She survived, but he was pronounced dead after what authorities have called an unsuccessful water rescue in the seven-thousand block of Paw Paw Avenue, which is between Coloma and Watervliet. The two were on a date at the time. Michigan State Police say more information will be released later today.. ...Read Full Story

Scream Park Awards Scholarships

The Niles Scream Park has announced its community project scholarship recipients for the year. Secretary Kelly Welch tells WSJM News six young people from Niles, Brandywine, and South Haven High Schools have been picked for $500 scholarships from the non-profit park. Some of them were volunteers for the attraction, but that’s not the only reason they’d be picked.. ...Read Full Story

Grants To Mean New Riverfront Developments In SJ, BH

Berrien County has been approved for a more than $100,000 state grant that’s expected to allow for water taxis between Benton Harbor and St. Joseph. Cornerstone Alliance VP of External Affairs Christina Frank tells WSJM News Berrien County Community Development and Cornerstone Alliance applied for the Michigan Department of Natural Resources Waterways Program grant in April to make way for the water tax idea.. ...Read Full Story

Broadband Funds Approved For Michigan

The Federal Communications Commission this month announced that it’s authorized nearly $33 million in funding to expand broadband internet around Michigan. Southwest Michigan will receive $2.6 million over ten years as part of the allocation announced this week. It’s expected to expand high-speed internet to nearly 2,400 homes and businesses in the region. Congressman Fred Upton tells WSJM News he’s pleased.. ...Read Full Story

Niles Man Shot Multiple Times; Expected To Survive

A 32-year-old Niles-area man is recovering at South Bend Memorial Hospital after being shot multiple times in the legs and buttocks early Sunday morning. The Berrien County Sheriff’s Department says road patrol officers and Michigan State Police troopers responded to the call of multiple shots being fired in the 900 block of Woods Edge Drive in Niles Township just before 12:30 a.m. The victim was taken by ambulance to the hospital and underwent surgery. He’s expected to fully recover and is in stable condition.. ...Read Full Story

South Bend Man Killed In Cass County Shooting

The Cass County Sheriff’s Department is looking for more witnesses as detectives try to piece together the shooting death of an 18-year-old South Bend man. He’s been identified as Dayman Chatman, and was shot while attending a party at a home in the 29-hundred block of Yankee Street in Howard Township. Chatman was shot around 2 a.m. Sunday, and while some witnesses have been interviewed by police, they’re looking to talk to more people who had scattered after the shots were fired. Anyone with tips is asked to call the Cass County Sheriff’s Office at 269-445-1560, the Cass County Tip Line at 800-462-9328, or by texting CRIMES (274637) and then writing CASS with the details you’re sharing.. ...Read Full Story

Chikaming Township Releases Parks Survey

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