Local News Archives

Antwan “Tank” Mims Expected To Be Arraigned Tuesday

Antwan “Tank” Mims is back in southwest Michigan after spending some time on the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted Fugitives list this summer for a double murder at a party on March 25. He is expected to be arraigned Tuesday on two charges of open murder for the deaths of 22-year-old Cortez Miller and 29-year-old Michael Johnson. Benton Harbor Public Safety Director Dan McGinnis talked to our partners at WNDU NewsCenter 16 after Mims was taken off a plane and sent to the Berrien County Jail Monday afternoon.. ...Read Full Story

Marijuana Business Plans MI HQ

From the Associated Press — A medical marijuana business plans to build a headquarters for its state operations in southern Michigan. The Battle Creek Enquirer reports Michigan Pure Med plans to break ground this fall on a growing and processing center in Marshall that in five years is expected to employ about 400 people. Joe Jarvis, chief operations officer of Pure Med, says the company also plans research and development at the facility. He says the company is “taking a pharmaceutical approach to the market and bringing high-quality, low-cost product and making that available to Michigan patients.” Pure Med had previously received approval for a smaller site. The newspaper says the company will have 10 retail locations or provisioning centers in Michigan. Michigan voters approved marijuana use in 2008 for some chronic medical condition.. ...Read Full Story

Berrien Property Tax Collections Up

School districts around Berrien County have seen their revenues jump dramatically since the closure of a property tax loophole last year. Berrien County Treasurer Bret Witkowski tells WSJM News legislation from state Representatives Dave Pagel and Kim LaSata made it possible to revoke the homestead exemptions of property owners making that claim on more than one property. Since the crackdown, Witkowski says nearly a million dollars more has been collected for Berrien County schools.. ...Read Full Story

Grants Announced For Baroda, Van Buren County

Congressman Fred Upton has announced a couple of grants for Berrien and Van Buren counties. His office tells us the first USDA Rural Development grant in Berrien is $95,000 for the village of Baroda. It will be used to build a road through the industrial park. The park has 14 lots, 12 of which are sold to businesses looking to construct facilities. However, there isn’t road access to all of the sites. The grant will change that. It’s expected to lead to the creation of 20 jobs. The other grant is for $41,000 for Van Buren County to conduct a comprehensive countywide economic development plan. It will focus on three areas — transportation, workforce housing, and internet connectivity. Congressman Upton says the two USDA Rural Development grants will “directly help boost our local economy and create local jobs.”. ...Read Full Story

Group Looking At SWM Retail Needs

Cornerstone Alliance is looking at all options to help Benton Township replace the Target store in the Fairplain Plaza, which closed earlier this year. To that end, they’ve hired an organization called The Retail Coach to study the market. The company’s Will Kline talked about the work with 98.3 The Coast.. ...Read Full Story

OK2Say Tip Line Gets 500 Tips In July

Michigan’s OK2Say student safety tip line continues to receive a large number of calls and texts, even though it’s the summer. The Michigan Attorney General’s office tells us OK2Say received 510 tips in July. The most common types of tips are about suicide, followed by cyberbullying, self-harm, and threats. Attorney General Bill Schuette says the tip line, launched in 2014, has proven to be a success. The AG’s office increased its promotions of OK2Say following the school massacre in Parkland, Florida this year. The office notes it regularly holds assemblies regarding OK2Say at schools around the state. Presentations are currently scheduled in 162 schools in 26 counties for the upcoming school year. OK2Say has received more than 15,000 tips total since launching. You can find out more at Michigan.gov/OK2Say.. ...Read Full Story

Cass County Accepting Applications For Treasurer

Applications are now being accepted by the Cass County Treasurer Appointment Committee for that post. It became open with the death of Treasurer Linda Pruett in late July. Probate Judge Susan Dobrich, County Clerk Monica McMichael and Prosecutor Victor Fitz make up the committee authorized by state law to find someone to serve the remainder of Pruett’s term, which ends December 31, 2020. Prospective candidates need to be at least 18, be registered to vote in Cass County or able to move there if appointed, have an accounting background, experience managing a small staff and be familiar with real estate matters. The deadline to apply is 4 p.m. on August 31. The person selected will be eligible to run for a full term in 2020.. ...Read Full Story

Commission Settles Marijuana Question

Applications to open a medical marijuana business in Benton Harbor will become available on September 1. That’s following a meeting this past week of the city commission. The commission previously had set the application date about a month later, but a shift in state rules prompted bumping the local dates up. Commissioner Mary Alice Adams on Monday pushed for an even earlier date, but Mayor Marcus Muhammad didn’t want to overwhelm city staff.. ...Read Full Story

Study Looks At Future Of Waterfront

An ongoing study on the future development of the riverfront in St. Joseph and Benton Harbor will result in some workshops to seek public input next month. At this week’s Benton Harbor City Commission meeting, commissioners heard from Don Carpenter, a consultant working on the Twin Cities Harbor Visioning Charrette. It’s a grant-funded effort to plan for riverfront development in a sustainable way.. ...Read Full Story

Cornerstone Pursuing Retailers

Cornerstone Alliance is making an aggressive push to bring more retailers to Benton Township. Cornerstone President Rob Cleveland tells WSJM News the group has hired The Retail Coach, a national retail recruitment and development firm, hoping to get some spaces filled along M-139 between I-94 and Napier Avenue.. ...Read Full Story