Local News Archives

Schuette: Schools With Indian Nicknames Can’t Lose State Aid

Attorney General Bill Schuette says the Michigan school superintendent doesn’t have authority to cut off tax dollars to districts with American Indian mascots or logos. Schuette’s opinion was sought by state Representative Tim Kelly, a Republican from Saginaw County. Critics of schools with Indian mascots say they create a hostile environment and are culturally insensitive. But supporters say they’re signs of respect. In an opinion dated Monday, Schuette says state law lists specific grounds for a superintendent to stop state aid to a school district, but having an Indian mascot isn’t among them. In March, Superintendent Brian Whiston proposed cutting up to 10% of a district’s annual payments if he had authority. In Paw Paw, the school board in February voted to keep the Redskins nickname. Saranac also still uses the Redskins mascot.. ...Read Full Story

Monday Is The Deadline To Register To Vote In August

Time is running out to register to vote for some local elections taking place next month. The elections will be on August 8, and the deadline to register is next Monday. The Michigan Secretary of State’s office is also telling us there will be new voting equipment being used for the first time in 63 communities. Those communities have been receiving new optical scan machines designed to make things easier for both the voters and the election workers. In Berrien County, there will be a few things to decide next month. In the city of St. Joseph, three city commission candidates will be chosen out of a field of seven in a primary. Then, the three winners in the primary will appear again on a ballot in November, with the top two vote getters receiving four year terms and the third place candidate getting a two year term. On the August 8 ballot will be Fran Chickering, Al DiBrito, Kim Jorgensen Gane, Mike Garey, Peggy Getty, Mary Goff, and Laura Goos. There will also be some ballot questions to vote on in Three Oaks Township, Berrien Springs, and the village of Three Oaks.. ...Read Full Story

Van Buren County Drug Treatment Court To Graduate Five Friday

Five men will graduate Friday from the Van Buren County Drug and Family Treatment Court. Judge Kathleen Brickley will preside and share some information about the transformation that’s occurred in each grad’s life. All five of them are recovering from a drug or alcohol addiction, and in some cases, they’ve been able to avoid jail or prison by taking part in the rigorous treatment program the specialty court provides. The Van Buren County Specialty Courts Administrator tells us the programs offer community supervision and treatment to addicts who find themselves in the legal system because of their substance problem. The goal is to reduce the rate of reoffending, cut costs for taxpayers, and preserve families. The graduates will celebrate their completion of the programs at 9 a.m. at the courthouse in Paw Paw.. ...Read Full Story

Man Dies In Niles Area Roll Over Crash

Michigan State Police are investigating a fatal crash which occurred Thursday afternoon on US-31 near Niles. MSP tells us officers arrived on scene to find a single vehicle that had rolled over. The driver was trapped inside, and the Bertrand Township Fire Department had to get him out. The man, 71-year-old James Panos, of Martinsville, Indiana, went into cardiac arrest while being extricated. He was taken to a hospital where he was pronounced dead. Police are still working to determine what caused the crash.. ...Read Full Story

Kalamazoo County Approves New ID Card Program

From the Associated Press — Kalamazoo County has decided to create an identification card program for residents who lack documents needed to get a state ID. The Kalamazoo Gazette reports the county Board of Commissioners’ 6-5 vote Wednesday was split along party lines, but the Democratic majority approved a resolution creating the program. The resolution authorizes an initial budget of $60,000 to begin the program in
January. It also creates an advisory board that would report to the Board of Commissioners. The program will ensure an estimated 27,000 residents without a state-issued ID still have access to government and commercial services. Residents would be required to prove their residency status with several documents. However, state and federal programs may not recognize the ID.. ...Read Full Story

Michigan AG: Schools With Native American Nicknames Can’t Lose State Aid

From the Associated Press — Attorney General Bill Schuette says the Michigan school superintendent doesn’t have authority to cut off tax dollars to districts with American Indian mascots or logos. Schuette’s opinion was sought by state Rep. Tim Kelly, a Republican from Saginaw County.
Critics of schools with Indian mascots say they create a hostile environment and are culturally insensitive. But supporters say they’re signs of respect. In an opinion dated Monday, Schuette says state law lists specific grounds for a superintendent to stop state aid to a school district, but having an Indian mascot isn’t among them. In March, Superintendent Brian Whiston proposed cutting up to 10 percent of a district’s annual payments if he had authority. In Paw Paw, the school board in February voted to keep the Redskins nickname.. ...Read Full Story