News

Montcalm County Undersheriff Mike Williams monitors primary election results online with his wife, Jeni, at their Sidney-area home Tuesday night. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Voters choose Williams as next Montcalm County sheriff

The tightest race in Montcalm County came down to the sheriff’s next man in command. Voters convincingly chose Undersheriff Mike Williams to succeed longtime Sheriff Bill Barnwell on Tuesday. Barnwell is retiring at the end of this year and endorsed Williams to follow in his footsteps.

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JUST IN: Voters approve Central Montcalm’s school bond proposal, Montabella’s tax levy renewal

A majority of voters in their districts approved a bond proposal for Central Montcalm Public School and voted Montabella Community Schools to continue its 18 mill non-homestead property tax levy.

Ron Schafer

JUST IN: Schafer dominates 8th Judicial Circuit Court judge race

A former prosecutor turned judge emerged as the frontrunner over two attorney challengers Tuesday in the race for 8th Judicial Circuit Court, which covers Ionia and Montcalm counties.

Charlie Mahar, at right, explains his plans for the future if he is elected Montcalm County sheriff while fellow sheriff candidates Michael Williams, center, and Charles Noll, at left, listen during a primary election forum Monday evening in Greenville. The three Republicans are facing off in today’s election. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Montcalm County candidates make final bid for votes before today’s election

The three candidates in the hottest race in Montcalm County were given one last chance to earn votes. Charlie Mahar, Charles Noll and Michael Williams had their final face off during a candidate forum Monday evening at Montcalm Community College’s Ash Technology Learning Center in Gr

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Montcalm County releases sheriff candidates’ personnel files

The Daily News utilized the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA) to obtain the personnel files of five candidates running for sheriff in two counties, in an effort to research the character and job performance of all five men.

The Flat River, pictured here in Six Lakes, runs through Six Lakes, Greenville, Belding and Lowell, with various streams and tributaries connected to it. The Flat River Watershed Council is working toward building a management plan to restore and protect the river. — Daily News/Emilee Nielsen

Local groups partner to restore and protect the Flat River

The Flat River has long been a source of joy, recreation and sustenance for the communities built around it. Over time, though, the river has fallen victim to bad practices, which affect water quality, water levels and the wetlands surrounding it.

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Flat River Watershed meetings scheduled for July and August

Four meetings will be held throughout the Flat River Watershed to present water quality data and discuss recommendations to restore and protect the watershed.

Spanning 564 square miles in Kent, Montcalm, Ionia, and Mecosta counties and incorporating three major communities — Belding, Greenville, and Lowell — the Flat River Watershed is home to a lively biotic community and viable small mouth bass fishery. Incorporating 150 miles of stream channel, the Flat River and its tributaries are incredibly scenic and beloved for their recreation possibilities.

Sweepstakes Showmanship Champion Heather Fishburn, 17, of North Central 4-H Club, poses with her sheep, Jack, after winning the sweepstakes competition Saturday at the Montcalm County 4-H Fairgrounds. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Vestaburg teen defends title, repeats as sweepstakes showmanship champion

Being declared a showmanship champion stands as one of the highest honors in 4-H, and for Heather Fishburn, victory now tastes twice as sweet. On Saturday morning, 11 4-H’ers, each of them a showmanship champion for a separate animal class, walked into the livestock arena at the Montcalm County 4-H Fairgrounds with a goal to come out on top amongst their peers.

About 60 people attended a forum for Republican candidates for the 70th District State House Thursday evening at the Six Lakes VFW Post 5602, where they listened to each candidate speak. — Daily News/Cory Smith

GOP state rep hopefuls square off in Six Lakes

With less than a month remaining before the Aug. 2 primary, candidates for local and state elections are ready to hit the home stretch. On Thursday evening, Republican candidates for the 70th District State House participated in a forum at Six Lakes VFW Post 5602, hosted by ladies auxiliary member Shirley Pool.

Former Central Montcalm Public School superintendent Jacob Helms of Clifford Lake was one of many residents to address the Montcalm County Board of Commissioners on Monday about law enforcement cuts. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Adopt a park, adopt a sheriff’s deputy?

Montcalm County officials have come up with an Adopt-A-Park plan to help keep county parks open amid budget cuts.

But who will adopt a sheriff’s deputy?