Local

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: Howard City will soon welcome new village manager

The outgoing village manager reported the incoming village manager is ready to come to work.

The Howard City Village Council recently approved hiring Michael Falcon as its new manager.

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.

Congressman John Moolenaar, left, speaks with Doug Bartlett, an Edmore mail carrier and president of the Michigan Rural Letter Carriers’ Association, prior to riding with Bartlett on his mail route Monday. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Congressman Moolenaar rides along with mail carrier, tours health facility

Moolenaar, R-Midland, is the representative of the 4th District, which includes Montcalm County (minus Eureka Township), as well as Gratiot, Isabella and Mecosta counties, among others. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the 4th District is the second-most rural district in the state, second only to the 1st District, which contains the entirety of the Upper Peninsula.

male addict syringe and heroin in a spoon in the shape of a cross

HEROIN HITS HOME: The Daily News to begin 4-part heroin series

The 2015 Sam Quinones book “Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic” tells the story of how the prescription painkiller epidemic of the early 2000s spawned heroin addiction in unlikely locations around the country.

From left, Mid-Michigan Humane Society acting Board President Angela Hollinshead, Vice President Rachell Martin and Secretary Autumn DeVries are pictured. The humane society was recently established to provide extra security and services to pets in Montcalm County and surrounding areas. — Courtesy photo

Local Humane Society established to expand services to pets

Amid an uncertain future for the Montcalm County Animal Shelter, a group of people have come together to provide some peace of mind for pets and pet owners throughout the county.

Angela Hollinshead, director of Montcalm County Animal Control and acting president of the board for the newly formed Mid-Michigan Humane Society (MMHS), said the idea for the Humane Society was born out of panic when in June 2016 it looked like the county might need to eliminate Animal Control.

Howard City Village Clerk-Treasurer Melissa Kuzmik listens at left, as Village Manager Randy Heckman talks about the Howard City Village Council choosing four finalists for village manager during Monday night’s meeting. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Howard City Village Council chooses 4 village manager finalists

The Howard City Village Council has chosen four finalists for village manager.

The Village Council on Monday night agreed to arrange interviews with Wally Delamater, Michael Falcon, Thomas Raymond and Charles Watson.

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IN BRIEF: Howard City chooses village manager finalists

The Howard City Village Council has chosen four finalists for village manager.

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Howard City’s proposed employee policy changes face questionable legality

Proposed policy changes that would cause village employees to be fired for saying anything critical of the village are now being reconsidered after The Daily News filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request.

During the Feb. 20 meeting of the Howard City Village Council, Village Manager-President Randy Heckman distributed to council members copies of proposed changes he wants to make to the village employee policy manual.

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Smoke from barn fire kills livestock in Winfield Township

Smoke from a barn fire Wednesday afternoon at 8834 N. Bailey Road caused several barn animals to perish.