Rep. Jim Lower, R-Cedar Lake, speaks Monday in a room full of constituents at the Legislative Update meeting held at Montcalm Community College.

Lower discusses failed effort to cut income tax

In just his second month in office as a state representative, Jim Lower experienced a legislative session last week typically reserved for long, lame-duck negotiating evenings in December. Rep. Lower, R-Cedar Lake, spent the majority of Feb. 22, along with his fellow members of the Legislature, tweaking, negotiating and eventually voting on House Bill 4001.


IN BRIEF: Stanton City Commission endorses Taste of Montcalm

It may only be February, but Stanton City Commissioners discussed the June Taste of Montcalm festival at Tuesday night’s meeting.

Stanton City Manager Elizabeth Pynaert asked city commissioners to endorse the festival, which had it’s inaugural event last year.

Dumpsters for multi-family trash services, such as apartments, are part of the sealed bids proposals the Village of Sheridan is collecting. Granger, a Lansing-based trash and recycling collection, bought Sidney Sanitation in 2016 and has a contract for trash service in Sheridan until May. — Daily News/Meghan Nelson

Sheridan accepting trash collection bids

Village residents could see a change in trash service later this spring.


IN BRIEF: Montcalm County borrows money to pay delinquent taxes

The Montcalm County Board of Commissioners unanimously voted Monday night to approve a borrowing resolution for 2016-2017 delinquent taxes.

The resolution was similar to action taken by commissioners last October to borrow no more than $2.6 million for the 2014-2015 delinquent tax revolving fund.

Wabasis Creek and Wabasis Lake are designated for land preservation, but is at risk of E. coli contamination, according to a presentation by the Mid-Michigan District Health Department during a seminar hosted by the Montcalm Planning Commission on Thursday.

Septic tanks, E. coli impact Flat River watershed

Swimming, boating and fishing might not be a typical conversation in late February, but it was exactly what local health officials were talking about Thursday during a seminar hosted by the Montcalm Planning Commission. Bob Gouin, environmental health director, and Marcus Cheatham, health officer, both from the Mid-Michigan District Health Department (MMDHD) talked about the risk of E. coli, a bacteria commonly found in human waste, poses to swimming, boating and fishing activities in Montcalm County.

Montcalm County Emergency Medical Services Director David Feldpausch points out how the EMS facility’s parking lot in Stanton, which is located in a valley behind the Montcalm County Sheriff’s Office and Jail, often gets flooded and messy due to water runoff. Feldpausch is hoping the Montcalm County Board of Commissioners will approve his proposed $81,000 revamp of the parking lot. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Montcalm County EMS parking lot may get $81,000 improvement

The parking lot of the Montcalm County Emergency Medical Services (EMS) building is falling apart, and the Road Commission for Montcalm County has offered to help fix it. EMS Director David Feldpausch appeared before the county’s Economic Development & Physical Resources Committee and the county’s Finance & Personnel Committee on Feb. 13 to ask for their approval of a parking lot project at what’s also known as the BVM facility (named in honor of former county commissioners Bogart, VanHarn and McCrackin). The project calls for improving the drainage, removing the current parking lot asphalt and expanding the parking lot around the BVM (which would add about 20 more parking spaces) at a cost not to exceed $83,000. The money would come from the EMS fund, not the county’s general fund.

The Montcalm County Drain Commission Office in Stanton is located directly above a newly installed steam boiler, which is causing problems for Drain Commission employees due to gas and chemical fumes in the air. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

New boiler proving to be a headache at county offices

The installation of a new boiler has solved one problem for Montcalm County, and created another. Last October, the Montcalm County Board of Commissioners approved purchasing a new steam boiler for $45,600 after the previous steam boiler broke down. The new boiler was paid for out of the county’s contingency fund.


CM school board discusses sex ed curriculum

The seven members of the Central Montcalm Public School Board of Education heard a presentation Monday on the district’s Positive Behavior Intervention Supports (PBIS) and a possible addition to the Sex and Reproductive Health Curriculum. Amanda McLaughlin, Multi Tiered Systems of Support coordinator, gave the school board an update on PBIS, now in its second year of a three-year project.

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.