Local

Stanton City Clerk/Treasurer Lori Braman and Mayor Ken Burris listen to discussion during Tuesday night’s Stanton City Commission meeting. — Daily News/Meghan Nelson

Stanton Veterans Park plans take a big step back

The future of Stanton’s Veterans Memorial Park is uncertain after the Stanton City Commission voted to rescind state grants for the park. Last December, Stanton officials learned they were approved for a Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) grant worth $296,000, but it required at $596,800 match.

Cheyanna Fleming

Trio of female cousins from Saginaw get jail for robbing Sidney man

A trio of female cousins from Saginaw received jail sentences for their roles in robbing a Sidney Township home last autumn.

Michigan’s 70th District State Rep. Jim Lower, R-Cedar Lake, explained his decision not to ask the Michigan Attorney General’s Office for an opinion about whether election programming is a county clerk’s statutory duty in a Feb. 1 letter to Montcalm County Controller-Administrator Robert Clingenpeel and Montcalm County Board of Commissioners Chairman Patrick Q. Carr. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Rep. Lower declines to request AG opinion about election programming

The decision of whether to pay a county clerk additional salary for election programming is back before the Montcalm County Board of Commissioners.

In January, commissioners voted to seek a legal opinion from the Michigan Attorney General, with the assistance of 70th District State Rep. Jim Lower, R-Cedar Lake, regarding the question of whether election programming is a statutory duty for county clerks.

New Stanton Mayor Ken Burris, at left, welcomes new City Manager Elizabeth Pynaert after city commissioners unanimously voted to hire Pynaert full-time during Tuesday night’s Stanton City Commission meeting. — Daily News/Meghan Nelson

Stanton hires new city manager; mayor resigns, blames new mayor

In the last five months, this city lost its manager, searched for a manager with Lakeview, cut ties with Lakeview, appointed an acting city manager and began advertising for a permanent manager. The “convoluted process,” as Stanton City Commissioner Karl Yoder called it, came to a close Tuesday night when the Stanton City Commission unanimously voted to offer acting City Manager Elizabeth Pynaert the full-time city manager job with a one-year contract.

Joe Verlin of Gabridge & Co., a Grand Rapids-based auditing firm, updated Montcalm County commissioners on Monday about the county’s ongoing audit and financial progress. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Montcalm County commissioners hear update from new auditor

The Montcalm County Finance & Personnel Committee heard some hopeful news Monday from the county’s new auditor.

Joe Verlin of Gabridge & Co., a Grand Rapids-based auditing firm, updated commissioners on the ongoing county audit.

dnlogo

IN BRIEF: Stanton gets new mayor, city manager

The Stanton City Commission once again saw some personnel changes at Monday night’s meeting.

Joe Verlin of Gabridge & Co., a Grand Rapids-based auditing firm, updates Montcalm County commissioners on the ongoing county audit progress. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

IN BRIEF: Montcalm County hears report from new auditor

The Montcalm County Finance & Personnel Committee heard some hopeful news today from the county’s new auditor.

Joe Verlin of Gabridge & Co., a Grand Rapids-based auditing firm, updated commissioners on the ongoing county audit.

The Montcalm County Clerk’s Office has kept detailed records of election programming billing and receipts for local municipalities and school districts since the clerk’s office started billing in 2006 at the direction of the Montcalm County Board of Commissioners. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Montcalm County records contradict election billing allegations

A simmering dispute about Montcalm County election programming has come to a boil.

During the Jan. 23 Montcalm County Board of Commissioners meeting, Commissioner Betty Kellenberger of Carson City stated that officials from local municipalities have been telling her this is the first year they’ve been billed by the county for election programming services. Montcalm County Clerk Kristen Millard, who was present at that meeting, adamantly disagreed with this claim, saying the county has billed municipalities for this service since 2006 at the request of the Board of Commissioners.

A room full of people, including staff, students and community members, listened to NPR Jason Beaubien give a lecture about disease in Latin America on Tuesday.

NPR health correspondent kicks off MCC lecture series

Issues with viruses and disease in Latin America were the focus of a talk given at Montcalm Community College (MCC) on Tuesday. Jason Beaubien, a global health and development correspondent for National Public Radio (NPR), spoke in a room full of students, staff and community members. He touched on the outbreak and spread of viruses such as Zika, disease transmission and the prevalence of diabetes in Latin America.

Montcalm Conservation District Executive Director Judy Cloer and conservation district board members Steve Wyckoff and Jed Welder share their thoughts after Thursday’s Montcalm County millage meeting. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Montcalm County millage proposal inches forward

Supporters of a Montcalm County millage to fund local services have been receiving unpleasant but understandable feedback when presenting the proposal to residents.

“The initial reaction I get is, ‘Hell no,’” said Jed Welder, a Montcalm Conservation District board member and Greenville farmer. “The atmosphere with the county is so poisoned right now. But after you break through that there’s a little more willingness.”