News

Montcalm County 4-H Council President Kim Thomsen, left, and Montcalm Conservation District Director Steve Wyckoff, right, visit with a community member after a community gathering Wednesday to discuss whether to move forward with a millage ballot proposal for 4-H, animal, conservation, park and veteran services in the county. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Grassroots millage effort moves forward in Montcalm County

A grassroots group of citizens are moving forward with a proposed millage to fund Montcalm County services, but they don’t necessarily want the approval of the Montcalm County Board of Commissioners.

Nearly 20 people met at the Montcalm Conservation District office in Stanton on Wednesday to discuss options for funding 4-H, Animal Control, conservation, parks and veterans.

From left, Dan Manning, a community technology adviser with Connect Michigan, presents “Connected Community” certification to Casair founder Steve Meinhardt, Kathy Jo Vanderlaan, Montcalm County’s business development coordinator with The Right Place, Montcalm Economic Alliance Vice President Robert Clingenpeel, and Alliance President Rob Spohr, during Wednesday’s Alliance meeting. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Connected Community: 99% of Montcalm County is online

In rural Michigan, reliable broadband internet may be hard to come by, but that is not the case in Montcalm County.

On Wednesday, Dan Manning, a community technology adviser with Connect Michigan, presented the county with “Connected Community” certification under Connected Nation’s Connected Community Engagement Program.

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MAISD to benefit from 3-year sex ed grant

The Montcalm Area Intermediate School District has been awarded a grant that was given to only 19 other districts nationwide.

The Sexual Risk Avoidance Education Grant provides sexual risk avoidance education for special education students in self-contained classrooms, which have smaller groups of students.

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Lakeview offers peer mentoring program

Lakeview Middle School speech and language pathologist Holly Bennet and social worker Kathy Hewett are teaming up to offer a peer-to-peer mentoring program. The duo is working with a male and female group of sixth-graders to teach, implement and reinforce social and language skills they would typically learn during speech and language or social work programs.

The dock at Lakeside Park could see the addition of a universally accessible kayak launch through a future Lakeview Downtown Development Authority project. — Daily News/Meghan Nelson

Lakeview DDA receives final lakeshore development plans

After eight months of meetings, public input and designing, a shoreline development plan was presented to the Lakeview Downtown Development Authority (DDA) on Wednesday night. Matthew Levandoski, a landscape architect with Prein & Newhof, a Grand Rapids-based civil engineering company, and his colleague Kim Jongsma, an urban planning and public outreach specialist, presented six areas of development they designed.

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Montcalm County Parks & Rec Committee fails to have quorum

The Montcalm County Parks & Recreation Committee was scheduled to discuss and vote on the topics of park closure and adopt-a-park applications Tuesday morning.

However, the committee was unable to meet due to the lack of a quorum.

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IN BRIEF: Lakeview school board president, superintendent thank board members

School Board President Edward Jonaitis and Superintendent Kyle Hamlin recognized Lakeview school board members for having the “toughest volunteer job in America” at Monday night’s meeting.

As part of board appreciation month, all board members received a certificate recognizing their service and a $25 gift card to Turk Lake Restaurant, and Chartwells Food Service provided board members snacks for the meeting.

Lakeview Clerk and Finance Director Pam Main and new Village Manager Shay Gallagher review budget notes in preparation for the village’s upcoming budget. — Daily News/Meghan Nelson

Lakeview’s new village manager Shay Gallagher feels right at home

During Shay Gallagher’s interview for Lakeview village manager, he told the Village Council he planned to hit the ground running. Since accepting the position and starting the job less than one month ago, that’s exactly what he has done.

Steve Wyckoff holds a copy of the Montcalm County Forestry & Wildlife Guide, a publication created in part by the Montcalm Conservation District. Wyckoff, a conservation district director, is leading a grassroots effort to explore the possibility of a millage proposal to fund services for the conservation district along with Montcalm County Animal Control, 4-H, county parks and veterans. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Montcalm County millage exploration group to meet Jan. 18

Animals, conservation, 4-H, parks and veterans.

These five topics may not share the same audience or interest in Montcalm County, but they all have one common need: Funding.

Patrick Q. Carr of Lakeview, at right, was unanimously re-elected chairman of the Montcalm County Board of Commissioners by his colleagues during Tuesday morning’s organizational meeting. Also pictured is Montcalm County Controller-Administrator Robert Clingenpeel, at left. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Montcalm County BOC switches to night meetings for more attendance

If your New Year’s resolutions included attending more Montcalm County Board of Commissioner meetings — but you work a day job — you’re in luck.

Commissioners voted 8-1 during Tuesday’s annual organizational meeting to start meeting at 6 p.m. each month for full board meetings, instead of the usual 1:30 p.m. meeting time. All full board meetings take place the fourth Monday of each month.