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Stanton residents currently drop off recyclables at collection sites like this one operated by Montcalm County. Curbside recycling pickup is not included in the city’s new solid waste contract with Republic Services, but it is a feature that could be added in the future. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Stanton votes to not include curbside pickup for recyclables in trash contract

Curbside pickup for recyclables won’t be a part of Stanton’s benefits with a new trash service contract with Republic Services, but it’s still an option.

The Stanton City Commission unanimously voted Tuesday night to finalize a five-year contract with Republic Services, which has serviced the city for solid waste pickup for more than 10 years.

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BREAKING NEWS: Morse sentenced for Sidney Township murder

A Sidney Township man was sentenced to up to 75 years in prison today for murdering an elderly man last spring at Nevins Lake.

Alan Morse, 48,was sentenced to from 26 to 75 years in prison for the murder of Alan “Dale” Nelson.

Montcalm County Commissioner Ron Baker, right, takes a moment to speak with Sen. Judy Emmons, R-Sheridan, after Monday afternoon’s Legislative Update meeting at Montcalm Community College. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Outman, Emmons defend law restricting ballot communication

Facing criticism from local officials, Rep. Rick Outman, R-Six Lakes and Sen. Judy Emmons, R-Sheridan are defending legislation they believe is being incorrectly interpreted. During Monday afternoon’s Legislative Update meeting at Montcalm Community College, Montcalm County Commissioner John Johansen addressed Emmons about Public Act 269, a campaign finance law signed by Gov. Rick Snyder on Jan. 6.

The Montcalm County Board of Commissioners on Monday unanimously approved a request for the Road Commission for Montcalm County to borrow $4 million for local road work. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Road Commission to borrow $4 million for Montcalm County roads

The Road Commission for Montcalm County will be borrowing $4 million to get a jump start on road work based on Michigan’s legislative road funding package. Road Commission Superintendent-Manager Mark Christensen appeared before the Montcalm County Board of Commissioners on Monday to request permission for the Road Commission to begin the process of borrowing $4 million. The board unanimously approved the request.

Rep. John Moolenaar, R-Midland, at left, listens as Montcalm Community College Vice President of Academic Affairs Rob Spohr explains how the college trains students to prepare for manufacturing jobs, such as using this basic motor control system board. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Rep. Moolenaar tours MCC, learns about rapidly changing workforce

Lots of us probably sing along to the Japanese lyrics of “Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto,” by the rock band Styx. But for many Americans, that’s where the knowledge of Asia and technology end.

Brown bags of ready-to-eat meals were delivered to Walnut Hills Elementary School in Greenville on Friday. The take-home meals are provided by a program called IM KIDS 3rd Meal program, which provides a meal to local children in need of getting a third meal each day of the week. The program is supported by both Montcalm and Ionia's intermediate school districts and involves as many as 450 students in both counties. Pictured are meal bags that were delivered to the classroom of teacher Molly Tarkowski's first grade class. — Daily News/Ryan Schlehuber

IM KIDS program helps up to 450 children in need of meals each week

Thanks to a friendly competition between two intermediate school districts last month, more local children will be enjoying a third meal each day. Speaking at Thursday’s meeting of the Montcalm Intermediate School District (MAISD), Superintendent Ron Simon announced that the MAISD edged Ionia’s ISD in a food fundraiser, collecting 195 food bags to Ionia’s 170 between the span of Dec. 1 and Dec. 18. The bags of food were donated to the IM KIDS 3rd Meal program, which both ISDs partner in supporting.

Mark Mathisen was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis when he was 7 months old and was told he wouldn’t live to the age of 18. Today, at age 31, he is celebrating his first published novel, a work of fiction titled “My Brother Alan.” — Daily News/Cory Smith

Central Montcalm grad deals with cystic fibrosis diagnosis by writing

At 7 months of age, Mark Mathisen’s eyes were open wide to the world around him serving as a wonderful miracle of life cradled in the arms of his parents. But before Peter and Sharon Mathisen could celebrate Mark’s first steps or first words, their new world as a family of three came crashing to a halt, with Mark suddenly laying prematurely on his deathbed.

Thousands of used medical items wind up in landfills every month, where they create a public health hazard. Thanks to a new program at the Mid-Michigan District Health Department, proper disposal is now easy and convenient. — Daily News/Mike Taylor

New health department program tackles problem of medical waste

For hundreds of Montcalm County residents, daily heath maintenance comes at the end of a sharp needle. Frequently, meds to manage conditions such as allergies, arthritis, cancer, diabetes, hepatitis, HIV/AIDS, migraines and multiple sclerosis are delivered in this manner.

Montcalm County Board of Commissioners Vice Chairman Ron Retzloff of Crystal, left, reviews appointments as Montcalm County Controller-Administrator Chris Hyzer discusses the annual meeting schedule and committee assignments during an organizational meeting Monday. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Montcalm County commissioners OK bylaws, procedures and appointments

The Montcalm County Board of Commissioners held a 12-minute meeting Monday to organize for the new year.

From left, Danielle Pemberton of Reed City, Macie Devries of Greenville, Amber Marchese of Belding, Brock Jackson of Stanton and Taylor Teegardin of Coral, wait in line to apply for the Montcalm Community College nursing program Monday afternoon. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Students line up overnight for early enrollment in MCC nursing program

Danielle Pemberton spent her 27th birthday Monday huddled under her coat, sitting in a lawn chair just a few feet outside the front entrance of Montcalm Community College’s administration building.

Settling in at 7 a.m., Pemberton made herself comfortable, taking shelter from the rain under the building’s exterior overhang. Although there was no cake to eat, candles to blow out or gifts to unwrap, it would still likely be a birthday she won’t soon forget.