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Congressman John Moolenaar meets with media before Thursday’s listening session at Central Michigan University. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Congressman Moolenaar talks failed ACA repeal effort, future of health care reform

Congressman John Moolenaar knew Thursday evening’s listening session was going to be a bumpy ride.

As about 900 people were being seated in Warriner Hall’s Plachta Auditorium at Central Michigan University, Moolenaar steadied himself for the event in a dressing room in the basement of the nearly century-old theater.

Audience members waved green or red pieces of paper to show their support or opposition to statements made during Congressman John Moolenaar’s listening session Thursday at Central Michigan University. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Congressman Moolenaar hosts raucous listening session at CMU

Not much listening took place during a Thursday night “listening session” hosted by Congressman John Moolenaar.

Nearly 900 people packed Central Michigan University’s Warriner Hall to hear from the Republican representative for Michigan’s 4th District, which encompasses 15 counties.

Montcalm County Sheriff Mike Williams

Montcalm County commissioners to set sheriff’s deputy contract rate

The Montcalm County Board of Commissioners on Monday will consider a recommendation to set a lower rate for municipalities to contract with sheriff’s deputies than the sheriff would prefer.

The county’s Finance & Personnel Committee on April 10 voted to recommend the full board approve setting all contract rates for deputies at $75,000 starting in 2019. Sheriff Mike Williams had asked commissioners to set the rate at $79,000.

Kalvin Quakenbush, a junior and the head electrician for the Mustang Robotics, tells the Montabella school board on Monday how he helped design a robot to be able to be successful in the gear component of a competition. — Daily News/Meghan Nelson

Montabella Mustangs Robotics team is looking for support

Being involved in robotics has helped Kalvin Quackenbush with his grades and direction after high school graduation. “This program kind of led me where I wanted to go, which is electrical engineering or robotic engineering,” said Quackenbush, a Montabella High School junior and the head electrician of Mustangs Robotics.

New Ferris Township Trustee Kevin Hills looks over the list of requirements for the position. Hills was unanimously voted to join the board during a special meeting Monday.  — Daily News/Meghan Nelson

Ferris Township Board appoints new trustee

Once again, Ferris Township has a full board to serve its residents.

On Monday, the township board held a special meeting to fill an open trustee position after former trustee Randy Stearns was appointed to fill the supervisor position, which was vacated when Brian Stratton resigned.

Rep. Jim Lower sits down with  volunteer grandparent Joan Pitts during his visit to Montabella Elementary School. — Daily News/Meghan Nelson

Rep. Lower tours Montabella Elementary School

As State Rep. Jim Lower, R-Cedar Lake, walked the hallways of Montabella Elementary School, he gets a chance to see what administrators, teachers and students experience there on a daily basis.

Rep. John Moolenaar

Rep. Moolenaar to host district-wide listening session Thursday

Congressman John Moolenaar will be hosting a district-wide listening session Thursday evening at Central Michigan University’s Plachta Auditorium.

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IN BRIEF: Art classes coming back to Montabella Junior/Senior High

For the 2017-2018 school year students at Montabella Junior/Senior High School will once again have the option of art classes.

The Vestaburg FIRST Robotics team, the Vestabots, in red shirts, are advancing to the state finals competition at Saginaw Valley State University today and Sunday. The team won the Gracious Professionalism award at last weekend’s event in Shepherd; an award which recognizes teamwork, a positive attitude and communication. — Courtesy photo

Vestaburg robotics team bound for state tourney

There were a lot of firsts happening for Vestaburg Community School last weekend. The high school’s first robotics team competed in their first competition — and won — during a tournament in Shepherd on April 8. The competition is part of For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST) robotics.

Amber Rowland is pictured in happier times on a poster created by friends and family after Amber fatally overdosed on heroin in the summer of 2016. She was 25 years old. — Daily News/Cory Smith

HEROIN HITS HOME: Part 1, ‘Kissing Everything Goodbye’

“I was 22 and only smoked weed, drank from here and there, took pills sometimes. Some call me a late bloomer.” — So begins a letter written by Amber Rowland on April 11, 2016, and read aloud in Montcalm County’s Drug Court as a success story from someone who was bound by addiction, but fought to be sober.