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Moolenaar gives general election season updates

When Congressman John Moolenaar visited the campus of Montcalm Community College on Monday, he was candid in giving an update on the current happenings in Washington, D.C.

Rep. Rick Outman, R-Six Lakes, speaks at Monday’s Legislative Update meeting at Montcalm Community College.

Outman reflects on 6 years as state representative

For six years, Rep. Rick Outman, R-Six Lakes, has made monthly trips to Montcalm Community College to update his constituents on the happenings of Lansing.

From state budget issues and road funding concerns, to education legislation and thoughts on the Flint water crisis, Outman rarely, if ever, shied away from speaking on a topic, whether those in the audience agreed with his thoughts or not.

The old Carnation property, on the corner of S. Sheridan (M-66) and E. Condensery, is in the final stages of being available for development. Sheridan Village Council members talked about what to do with the property during Tuesday night’s council meeting. — Daily News/Meghan Koglin

Sheridan officials preparing to put up former Carnation property for sale

The Sheridan Village Council is talking about next steps to take with the former Carnation property on M-66.

Kathy Jo VanderLaan from The Right Place and Robert Anderson from ASTI Environmental gave an update on the status of the property during Tuesday night’s Village Council meeting.

Animal Control Director Angela Hollinshead updated Montcalm County commissioners on her department’s status on Monday after Animal Control received a 33 percent budget cut. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Animal Control deals with budget cuts by reducing hours, staff

Reduced hours, reduced staff, reduced services.

Montcalm County Animal Control is running as such after a 33 percent budget cut by the Montcalm County Board of Commissioners.

Daily News/Meghan Koglin

Jim LaCroix, executive manager of Wright Plastics in Sheridan, gives students from Montcalm County Career Center a tour of the plant Friday.— Daily News/Meghan Koglin

Students tour Wright Plastics in Sheridan, learn about manufacturing

Wright Plastics in Sheridan opened its doors Friday for a group of students from Montcalm Area Career Center.

The students were from welding and computer-aided design classes. Thanks to the tour, they were able to see different machines and processes the business uses and learn how what their basic skills and knowledge could turn into a career.

Montcalm County Sheriff’s Deputy Michael Levand explains how he’s lost his job twice now due to budget cuts. He was let go in 2012, but was able to return about six months later after another officer retired. Now Levand is being let go again, along with eight other full-time sheriff’s officers, plus two part-time court security officers. Their last day on the job is Friday. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Commissioners cut pay; approve new budget, deficit elimination plan

No apologies yet, but commissioners have decided to cut their pay. Another standing room only audience was in attendance Monday afternoon as the Montcalm County Board of Commissioners unanimously approved the 2017 budget and a 2016 deficit elimination plan for the state of Michigan. Included in the new budget was a 15 percent salary cut for commissioners.

The Montcalm County Board of Commissioners will vote to approve the fiscal year 2017 budget on Monday, including $1.7 million in budget cuts. — File photo

Loss of jobs, services hit home hard amid Montcalm County budget cuts

Montcalm County is in the red, and pink slips went out this week as a result.

Last Monday, the Montcalm County Board of Commissioners unanimously voted to make budget cuts totaling 22.5 full-time equivalents (FTEs). Those cuts, along with other budget adjustments, will equate to more than $1.7 million in cuts.

Montcalm County Controller-Administrator Robert Clingenpeel, left, and Montcalm County Board of Commissioners Chairman Patrick Q. Carr consider the task before them during a special budget meeting Monday. Commissioners voted to move forward with a recommended $1.7 million in budget cuts. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Montcalm County moves forward with $1.7 million in budget cuts

Montcalm County residents should prepare for a “new normal.” The Montcalm County Board of Commissioners unanimously voted Monday to accept a budgetary investigation analysis by Clark Hill, Rehmann Robson and Municipal Financial Consults Inc. (MFCI), and to make budget cuts totaling 22.5 full-time equivalents (FTEs). Those cuts, along with other budget adjustments, will equate to more than $1.7 million in cuts.

The pomes on the Bradford pear trees along Camburn Street in Stanton are starting to mature. The trees have been discussed at the last three Stanton City Commission meetings, including the meeting Tuesday night. — Daily News/Meghan Koglin

Conversation on Stanton tree removal remains controversial

Trees across Montcalm County are beginning to change, with apples maturing and leaves on the tips of trees starting to transform to their fall colors.

Stephen Blann of accounting firm Rehmann Robson reports Monday afternoon on how Montcalm County arrived at its current financial situation and what needs to be done in coming years to balance the budget. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Montcalm County commissioners hear the latest on budget investigation

The Montcalm County Board of Commissioners heard the initial findings of three financial, legal and consulting firms Monday regarding the county’s concerning budget situation.