Local News Archives

US Steel: Failed Pipe Apparently Caused Spill

(Portage, IN – AP) – U.S. Steel says a failed pipe apparently caused a spill at the company’s northern Indiana facility that sent a potentially carcinogenic chemical into a Lake Michigan tributary. The company said Wednesday its preliminary investigation shows an expansion joint failed in that pipe Tuesday at its Portage, Indiana, plant.. ...Read Full Story

Benton Harbor To Hold Town Hall On Water, Sewer System

Benton Harbor City Manager Darwin Watson is holding a town hall meeting Thursday night at City Hall. He’ll be talking to residents about the city’s water and sewer system as part of a series of forums he’s been holding for the past few months. Benton Harbor has been replacing old water meters since last year, and was awarded a grant of nearly $400,000 in February by the state for a slew of water projects. Watson told WSJM News at the time the city will be replacing the water main on Territorial from Paw Paw Avenue to Hull Street, replacing and connecting the water main on Sherman Court off of Colfax, and doing water valve replacements city-wide. The town hall meeting starts at 5:30 p.m.. ...Read Full Story

Western Michigan University Picks New President

Western Michigan University has its next president. The school’s Board of Trustees has picked a dean and professor of economics at Georgetown University’s McCourt School of Public Policy to succeed John Dunn, who is retiring. Edward Montgomery has been picked after a national search. Montgomery served as President Barack Obama’s auto-recovery czar. He has held faculty positions at Carnegie Mellon and Michigan State universities as well as the University of Maryland during a more than 35-year academic career. He has been at Georgetown since 2010. Dunn had planned to retire June 30, but the school says he will continue in his role until July 31. Montgomery will be WMU’s ninth president.. ...Read Full Story

Attorney General Takes Over Murder Investigation

The Attorney General’s office is confirming that it’s taken over a murder investigation in Van Buren County because a relative of Sheriff Dan Abbott is now being investigated. Reportedly the gun used to kill Eddie “EJ” Holland during a sour drug deal in Lion’s Park in February belonged to the Sheriff’s son. He is a friend of the prime suspect in the killing, Thurman Fletcher, who has been charged with open murder. The State Police will conduct the actual investigation, and turn over their investigation file to the Attorney General’s office for any additional charges.. ...Read Full Story

Former Rep. Gamrat Files Wide-Ranging Federal Lawsuit

Disgraced former state Representative Cindy Gamrat of Plainwell is alleging wiretapping, stalking and defamation in a lawsuit against the Michigan House, former House Speaker Kevin Cotter and her soon-to-be former husband. The defendants include Cotter and his chief of staff and general counsel, ex-staffers Keith Allard and Ben Graham, Joe Gamrat and many others. Fellow Republican and former lover Todd Courser previously filed a suit with a similar list of defendants, but later filed a motion to dismiss over failing health. Both conservative Christians were accused of using taxpayer resources to cover up their affair. That scandal led to Courser tendering his resignation in September 2015. Gamrat was thrown out of office an hour after Courser stepped down.. ...Read Full Story

Waterfront Film Festival Finds Permanent Home

The Waterfront Film Festival will not be returning to South Haven. The festival left South Haven in 2013 for Saugatuck and was canceled in 2015 due to a partnership with ArtPrize in Grand Rapids for a film competition. Organizers now say they have a permanent home being set up in Holland that will give them a year-round facility for screening films and for education and other purposes. A matching grant from the Michigan Council for Arts & Cultural Affairs helped to make the permanent home possible. Ticket information for the grand opening on June 22 will be announced next month.. ...Read Full Story

One Hurt In Bridgman Rollover

A 78-year-old Harbert man is being treated at Lakeland Hospital in St. Joseph for back, head, and neck injuries after a rollover crash in Bridgman. Police were called to the scene around 11:20 a.m. Tuesday on Lake Street near Pine Street and found the man trapped inside the car. Investigators believe he suffered a medical incident prior to the crash, causing him to cross into the oncoming lanes and then into a brick planter. The crash is still being looked into, and the man’s name has not been released.. ...Read Full Story

Car-Bike Accident Sends One to Hospital

A woman remains in the hospital after being hit by a car while riding her bicycle. The incident happened around 11:30 yesterday (Monday) morning on County Road 354 in Porter Township. 67-year-old rider was riding southbound when a car, driven by a 35-year-old man hit her from behind. Sheriff’s Deputies report the driver appeared to be under the influence of drugs and was arrested. He is being held in the Van Buren County Jail for possession of Marijuana and operating a motor vehicle with the presence of drugs. The bicyclist was transported to Bronson Hospital in Kalamazoo and is listed in stable condition. Their names have not been released.. ...Read Full Story