Local News Archives

GOP Leaders Call Off Budget Talks With Snyder Over Teacher Pension Dispute

From the Associated Press — Republican legislative leaders have canceled budget talks with Governor Rick Snyder’s administration due to their dispute with the governor over switching new teachers away from a pension into a 401(k) retirement plan. Snyder opposes closing the pension system to newly hired school employees. The move to cancel a Friday meeting between top lawmakers and Snyder’s budget director could put at risk a quick resolution of the next budget, which Snyder and the GOP-led Legislature like to finish in early June. Senate Majority Leader Arlan Meekhof and House Speaker Tom Leonard want to see progress on talks over the teacher retirement system before resuming budget
negotiations.. ...Read Full Story

Panel Recommends Pay Raises For MI Elected Officials

From the Associated Press — A panel is recommending that Michigan restore the pay of statewide elected officials to levels that were in place before a 10% cut was imposed in 2010. The State Officers Compensation Commission said Friday that the governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general and secretary of state should receive 10% pay hikes. It also said Supreme Court justices should receive their first raise since 2002. Pay levels ultimately are set by the legislature, which has been reluctant to vote for pay hikes and previously cut the pay of legislators and others during the economic downturn. The commission, which meets every two years, says pay should be boosted to attract quality public servants. It did not recommend a pay hike for legislators.. ...Read Full Story

Self-Defense Claimed In Benton Township Shooting Death

Self-defense is claimed in a shooting death in Benton Township earlier this month. At a Thursday hearing, Jade Roy testified that she and her boyfriend, Derrick Bailey, encountered her ex-boyfriend the night of May 1 at the intersection of Benton Center and Red Arrow Highway. She says that ex, Nicholaus Kling, had been sending her threatening text messages after finding out she was dating Bailey.. ...Read Full Story

Conviction In Attack On MSP Trooper

One of the two men accused of attacking Michigan State Police Trooper Garry Guild is headed to prison. 21-year-old Michael Barber faces up to 15 years behind bars for the most serious conviction, assault with intent to commit great bodily harm. Defense attorney Scott Sanford told our partners at WNDU NewsCenter 16 he was pleased the jury found Barber guilty of that instead of attempted murder, which was in front of them.. ...Read Full Story

State Approves Forms For Marijuana, Prevailing Wage Petitions

From the Associated Press — Groups that want to legalize recreational marijuana and repeal a law that requires union-level wages on state-financed building projects can begin gathering voter signatures. The Board of State Canvassers approved the form of the petitions on Thursday.
The ballot committees must collect roughly 252,000 valid voter signatures needed to put the bills before the Republican-led Legislature and potentially voters. Lawmakers likely would not act on the marijuana measure and instead let it go to a statewide vote in 2018. A new ballot committee has been created to oppose the marijuana legalization drive. GOP legislators could pass the repeal of the prevailing wage law to bypass Republican Governor Rick Snyder’s past veto threat.. ...Read Full Story

Police Investigate Benton Harbor Shooting

Police are looking for a suspect in a Thursday shooting in Benton Harbor. The department of public safety tells us it happened around 6:30 at the intersection of Main and McCord. Officers arrived to find 38-year-old Dondrell Blackamore, of Benton Harbor, wounded. He was taken to Lakeland Hospital in St. Joseph for treatment. Blackamore is the owner of M&M Garage, which is located at that intersection. Police don’t yet have any suspects, but say they’re investigating several leads. They did get a report of a man dressed in back running from the scene. If you have information on the shooting, you’re asked to contact the Benton Harbor Department of Public Safety.. ...Read Full Story