News

Belding Area Schools Board of Education members Cori Anderson, Shannon Hummel and Scott McNeal listen to President Timothy Flynn during the board’s discussion of the six candidates they spent the day interviewing. — Daily News/Emilee Nielsen

Belding Board of Education interviews 6 superintendent candidates, narrows list to 2

The search to fill the vacancy of superintendent at Belding Area Schools is now down to two candidates after the school district’s board of education narrowed the competition from a pool of six candidates during a special meeting on Saturday. The two finalists are Brent Noskey of Lowell and Wendy Maynard-Somers of Fruitport.

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IN BRIEF: Belding board of education accepts bid for refinishing gym floors

BELDING — Board of education members voted unanimously during Monday evening’s meeting to accept the bid from Floor Care Concepts to refinish the both gymnasium floors in the high school.

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No More Sidelines: Belding event to raise awareness about Down syndrome

Woman’s Life Belding Chapter 915 is sponsoring a walk-a-thon Saturday afternoon to raise awareness about Down syndrome and funds for an organization called No More Sidelines of Central Michigan.

The event will take place from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. at Rudness Field.

Crosswinds Manor Apartments is a low-to-moderate income housing unit for seniors which now qualifies for tax exemptions approved by the Belding City Council in a 3-1 vote Tuesday. — Daily News/Emilee Nielsen

Belding approves PILOT for apartment buildings

Crosswinds Manor Apartments will be making some hefty improvements over the course of the next two years, thanks to the approval of a payment in lieu of taxes (PILOT) program approved by the Belding City Council on Tuesday. Under the PILOT program, housing for low-to-moderate income people qualify for what is essentially a tax break; in lieu of paying taxes, housing developments that meet the requirements agree to pay an annual service charge. The charge amounts to 10 percent of the total rent collected from residents in a full calendar year.

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IN BRIEF: Belding residents unhappy about speed limit change

Belding City Council members are fielding calls from disgruntled residents following a speed limit reduction just outside of city limits that was approved during a regular Feb. 16 meeting.

Ron Schafer

Ionia County prosecutor named 8th Judicial Circuit Court judge

The longtime Ionia County prosecutor has been appointed to fill a vacant judicial seat in Ionia and Montcalm counties. Gov. Rick Snyder announced Monday he has appointed Ron Schafer as the new 8th Judicial Circuit Court judge.

Grattan Academy junior Noah Byrd, 16, second from left, is congratulated by senior Devon Hoard, 17, far left, and freshman Michael Taylor, 15, at right, on Thursday after being awarded a scholarship to partially fund a 10-month stay in Italy as a foreign exchange student next school year. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Grattan student gets scholarship to study abroad in Italy

Noah Byrd has long acted as an unofficial ambassador to foreign exchange students at Grattan Academy, welcoming visitors from countries across the world with open arms.

As the 16-year-old junior sat among his peers Thursday — and a number of foreign exchange students whom he now calls close friends — it didn’t take long before the attention of everyone in the high school gymnasium turned to him.

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‘We just haven’t had an election like this one before’: Montcalm County voters head to the polls

Presidential primary elections have been drawing record voter turnout throughout the United States.

Today, it’s Michigan’s turn.

Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Members of the Central Montcalm High School Symphonic Band react in celebration together with friends and family after learning that they received a first division rating at Thursday’s Michigan State Band and Orchestra Association District 7 Festival at Greenville High School. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Members of the Central Montcalm High School Symphonic Band react in celebration together with friends and family after learning that they received a first division rating at Thursday’s Michigan State Band and Orchestra Association District 7 Festival at Greenville High School. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Local school bands succeed at district band festival (PHOTOS)

Just a short time ago, Matthew Reed wasn’t entirely sure his students could come together and play the music program he had arranged to the expectations they had set forward. The Central Montcalm band director was determined to have his high school students ready to perform at the Michigan State Band and Orchestra District Band Festival, but facing a total of eight snow days, the necessary rehearsal time just wasn’t there.

The Belding office of The Right Door for hope, recovery and wellness center will have an addition put on the north side of the building to add six treatment rooms, bathrooms and showers in order to expand treatment options offered to area autistic children and families. — Daily News/Emilee Nielsen

Belding mental health center expanding treatment for autism

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention, in a 2014 study, determined that an average of one in 68 children between the ages of 3 and 17 in the United States are on the autism spectrum. The Right Door for hope, recovery and wellness, formerly the Ionia County Mental Health Department, is working toward offering behavioral services to more autistic children in the area community by constructing an addition to their facility in Belding.