Local

Firefighters from the Belding Fire Department and Greenville Department of Public Safety work to extinguish a fire at 303 E. Ann St. in Belding this morning. — Daily News/Cory Smith

BREAKING: Woman dies in Belding house fire, another woman escapes

A woman was discovered dead inside a Belding home early this morning from injuries sustained in a fire, while another woman was able to escape with injuries by jumping from a second story window.

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IN BRIEF: Otisco Township Board renews salvage yard contract

At a regular meeting of the Otisco Township board tonight, board members approved renewing a contract for Simons Salvage Yard.

According to Zoning Administrator Marc Larabel, the yard has operated without issue during their previous contract.

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IN BRIEF: Grattan Township board approves one reimbursement, denies another

Members of the Grattan Township Board voted unanimously to approve a request for reimbursement Monday evening, without taking action on an additional requests.

Grattan Elementary School sixth-graders and brothers, Henry Merren, 11, left, and Owen Merren, 11, explain to their classroom details they recently researched about the Flint water crisis. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Grattan students have ‘penny wars’ to help Flint residents

The first thing a visitor to Grattan Academy Elementary School sees as they walk into the building is a case displaying four jars filled with change beneath the phrase, “Let the penny wars begin!”

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Grattan Academy hires marketing firm

The Grattan Academy Board of Directors is committing nearly $10,000 toward marketing its school to attract new students, while retaining current ones. During a special meeting Jan.16, the Grattan school board unanimously approved hiring Piper & Gold Public Relations firm for the purpose of building a compelling marketing communications plan at a cost not to exceed $9,750.

Porsche, a golden retriever puppy, is the third dog to be taken in by Greta Wilker as a Paws for Cause puppy in training to be a service dog. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Belding senior trains puppies for Paws with a Cause

Juggling four sports and sitting at the top of her class with a 4.12 GPA, there’s not much outside of school that Greta Wilker has time for.

That is, until the Belding High School senior stares into the eyes of her golden retriever puppy, Porsche, who stares back with an equal amount of love and affection.

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Governor’s office accepting applications for Ionia-Montcalm judge appointment

Gov. Rick Snyder’s office is now accepting applications to fill a judge vacancy in Ionia and Montcalm counties.

Judge David Hoort of Portland has accepted a job with the Michigan Attorney General’s Office. He will retire as judge on Feb. 26.

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Belding school board makes several technology purchases

The Belding Area Schools Board of Education unanimously approved four separate motions Tuesday for expenditures in technology for the district: Network equipment, wireless equipment, telephone service and Internet service.

Belding Area Schools Transportation Director Beverly Brownell points to a map of Belding with every bus route throughout the school district. A new electronic routing system will replace the map, which is currently organized with color-coded thumbtacks and pushpins. — Daily News/Cory Smith

New transportation system coming to Belding schools

When plotting bus routes for Belding Area Schools, Transportation Director Beverly Brownell often feels like she’s jumping a few decades into the past. That’s because the current system in place involves a printed map that uses a color-coded system of pushpins and thumb tacks to map out the school district’s bus routes.

Otisco Township board member Dan Zeigler reads aloud a proposed ordinance during the Jan. 12 township board meeting that would limit the parking of recreational vehicles within the township.  — Daily News/Cory Smith

Zoning changes under review in Otisco Township

In November, there was much discussion by this township’s board centered on the idea of creating a standalone ordinance to deal with the storage of recreational vehicles (RVs).

That conversation picked up again during the Jan. 12 Otisco Township Board meeting as a revised version of the ordinance, which would restrict the parking of RVs on both vacant and occupied dwellings, was discussed.