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For the fourth straight year, representatives of the Montcalm Community College Business Professionals of America Club have qualified for and will compete in a national event. Pictured, from left, are co-adviser Bill Bishop, Rachel Jacobbson, Dustin Snoap, Elizabeth Jacobbson, Devin Covendish, Katrina Soper and co-adviser Michael Adams. Not pictured but also competing are Michael Ruggles, Carmon Bianchi and Justin Brackenbury.

MCC business club to compete at national event

For the fourth straight year, representatives of the Montcalm Community College (MCC) Business Professionals of America (BPA) Club have qualified for and will compete in a national event.

Puzzles with 100 pieces occupied students during Central Montcalm Elementary School’s 100 Days celebration on Monday. — Daily News/Mike Taylor

Central Montcalm kindergarten — where 100 is a big deal

How high can you count? A million, a billion? For kindergarten and first grade students at Central Montcalm Elementary School, getting from 1 to 100 is a pretty big deal.

Those in attendance at Monday’s Legislative Update meeting at Montcalm Community College listen as Rep. Rick Outman, R-Six Lakes, Sen. Judy Emmons, R-Sheridan, and Montcalm County Road Commission Superintendent-Manager Mark Christensen speak on the topic of emergency road funding. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Local legislators talk about road repair

An unusually harsh winter has left several county road commissions in Michigan scrambling for funds to continue snow-removal and salting efforts to battle the elements and keep roads safe and passable for commuters.

Randolph Flechsig has more than one year under his belt as administrator of Sheridan Community Hospital. He was hired in September 2012 and has more than 20 years of experience in the healthcare field. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Sheridan Community Hospital’s leader looks back at his first year on the job

Randolph Flechsig gets excited talking about rural healthcare like some people get excited talking about their favorite sports team. Flechsig took on administrative duties at Sheridan Community Hospital just over one year ago. He describes the past year as busy and challenging, but in a good way.

On shifts of 12 hours at a time, the highly experienced dispatchers of the Montcalm County Central Dispatch in Stanton take multitasking to the extreme with their daily duties. Dispatcher Karisa Bailey sits in front of the long line of computer screens she oversees as calls come into the 911 center. Each screen has a different program and serves a different purpose. — Daily News/Curtis Wildfong

Dispatchers team up to guide callers through dire circumstances

Illuminated by the bluish glow of a computer screen, the sharp eyes of 30-year veteran dispatcher Jan Jourdan dart from one monitor to the next, locating nearest personnel, directing services and gathering information from the caller, all while keeping an almost eery calm.

More than two dozen people attended Monday's Montcalm County Board of Commissioners meeting, which included a public hearing about a proposed property tax increase to fund the Montcalm Alliance. — Daily News/Cory Smith

County commissioners decline to vote on Montcalm Alliance millage

Many people have voiced opinions about a proposed economic development millage, but in the end it was silence that made the decision. After a 39-minute public hearing Monday afternoon, the Montcalm County Board of Commissioners declined to vote on a property tax increase to fund the Montcalm Alliance using Michigan’s Public Act 88, which would bypass a vote of the people.

William Tingley, owner of Tingley & Associates in Stanton, does contracted remonumentation work for Gratiot and Montcalm counties. Here he looks at the tag of an ancient shot gun, which was once used as a survey marker at an Evergreen Township location. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Montcalm County remonumentation project 60 percent complete

Twenty years ago, a major surveying project got underway in Montcalm County. The Montcalm Remonumentation Program was part of a statewide effort starting in 1993 with the goal of preserving history, protecting cadastral surveys (maps showing boundaries or property lines) and promoting professional surveying practices, according to William Tingley of Tingley & Associates, a land surveying and engineering service in Stanton. Tingley has a contract for the remonumentation of Gratiot and Montcalm counties.

ABOVE: Angel Doolittle, 10, of Sheridan, takes aim with a bow and arrow Thursday evening at Central Montcalm Community Church in Sheridan during a free archery class for children and adults. TOP RIGHT: Luke Myers, 11, of Stanton, uses a string bow to practice his form Thursday evening at the class.

Children learn life lessons through archery

There are lessons to be learned from the sport — some might call it art — of archery. Patience, strength, judgment, the ability to find one’s center and home in on it, like an arrow to a bullseye. All these are skills that make not only for a better archer, but a better person.

Audience members applaud a comment spoken out against a proposed Montcalm Alliance millage Monday afternoon. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Montcalm Alliance millage request heads to public hearing

With apologies to Malcolm Rebennack Jr., better known as Dr. John, members of the Montcalm Alliance were “in The Right Place … but it must have been the wrong time …” The Montcalm County Board of Commissioners didn’t vote for or against a millage request from the Montcalm Alliance on Monday, deciding instead to send the proposal to a public hearing next month.

James Freed, center, speaks out against a millage proposed by the Montcalm Alliance while the Montcalm County Board of Commissioners, at left, and Montcalm Alliance members, at right, listen. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Montcalm Alliance millage request to bypass Montcalm County voters

The Montcalm Alliance’s request for a countywide millage to fund economic development efforts will be voted on without local voters or a ballot. Montcalm Alliance members previously presented an overview of their millage request to the Montcalm County Board of Commissioners on Nov. 12. At that meeting, Montcalm Alliance members said they wanted to pursue voter approval of .1 mills to generate $162,000 to allow the Montcalm Alliance to join forces with The Right Place, a West Michigan business development and economic development agency which offers services to support existing and new businesses.