PERSONALLY SPEAKING: A legacy of local news

Today would have been my dad’s 79th birthday. And while he’s not here to enjoy all the things like cards and presents and my mom’s homemade cheesecake to mark his special day, he is still very much celebrated.

Often I find myself sitting in front of my computer at the paper trying to channel him, looking for guidance on a particular decision or wondering what he would do if he was walking in my shoes on any given day. Mostly I wonder what he would think about the way the world has changed today — particularly the world of news. And what he would want me to do in response to those changes.


OUR VIEW: Montcalm County commissioners must make amends

How do you sit in front of a roomful of constituents and employees detailing a plan that will cut $1.7 million from the county budget and the equivalent of 22.5 full-time positions without shouldering any of the burden?

This is our question to the nine elected officials who comprise the Montcalm County Board of Commissioners.

James Freed

GUEST VIEW: Pension and healthcare liabilities

It’s time for Lansing’s policymakers to take action on unfunded pension and healthcare liabilities—a new red-ink menace that threatens to swamp Michigan’s municipal budgets, overtaking critical taxpayer-funded services such as public safety.

Julie Stafford is pictured with her daughter, Emma, a cancer survivor. — Courtesy photo

GUEST VIEW: Go gold in September for Childhood Cancer Awareness

“Your child has cancer.”

These are the words no parent ever wants to hear.

But every day, the families of at least 43 children around the world will hear just that.


OUR VIEW: Montcalm County’s $9 million question

How do you spend almost $9 million of taxpayer money and not know it?

The Montcalm County Board of Commissioners is collectively asking themselves this question — and so are we — after a financial consultant report revealed the county spent an average of $2 million or more in savings each year for the last four years.

Merry Kim Meyers

GUEST VIEW: No place like a county fair

The Montcalm County 4-H Fair is set to begin Sunday. As this year’s theme proclaims, “There’s no place like a county fair.”

No place better for the grind and growl of the demolition derby. No place better to bid on a prize winning market animal. No place better for indulging in an ooey gooey elephant ear. No place better for … learning!


OUR VIEW: Paying attention in Montcalm County

Montcalm County officials have been trying to alert residents to a county budget predicament for a number of years.

They finally have the people’s attention.


OUR VIEW: Much applause for ‘Carmina’

On April 11, The Daily News published a front page story about 150 area artists and musicians collaborating for an April 17 presentation of Carl Orf’s “Carmina Burana” at the Greenville High School Performing Arts Center Anyone with knowledge of this prodigious musical undertaking realized the challenge ahead for the performers.


OUR VIEW: Confusing times for Montcalm County commissioners

“I felt that ever since I had this job that we’ve never known what we’re doing as far as our fund.” The eyebrow-raising admission was made by Commissioner Ron Braman of Vestaburg at a special Montcalm County Board of Commissioners meeting Monday.

Tammy Quillan

GUEST VIEW: Stand against a private mental health system

Gov. Rick Snyder recently released his proposed version of the state budget for fiscal year 2017. Nestled inside the massive 408 page document is the Health and Human Services budget, and within that budget — on page 125 — lies a small, but frightening section known as Section 298.