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Constantine awarded grant

March 3, 2014 by Administrator · Leave a Comment 

The village of Constantine was awarded a grant in excess of $240,000 Friday from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation.

During a ceremony at the village office, municipal leaders accepted the money awarded as part of a Downtown Infrastructure Grant. The $242,000 gift was contingent on an $80,000 match from the village.

Village Manager Mark Honeysett said the funds will help pay for a 34-space parking lot downtown, new lighting and a number of other amenities to enhance Constantine’s downtown area.

Constantine was one of 14 communities in the state to receive grants from the EDC. A total of $7 million was available from the Lansing agency.

Work is expected to start later in the spring and conclude in September.

Concerns about leaving water running

February 28, 2014 by Administrator · Leave a Comment 

Concerns about the city’s recommendation to leave a trickle of water running as a precaution against frozen pipes were expressed during last week’s Three Rivers City Commission meeting.

Residents Jim Everett and Helen Dettmar asked Mayor Tom Lowry and commissioners if residents who adhere to the request would be given a break on their water bills.

City manager Joe Bippus said the billing department would make average adjustments for people who do leave water running. Bippus said people who have either been following or plan to abide by the request should visit the city’s finance department.

Lowry suggested the city consider taking the average of the prior three, four or six billing cycles. He clarified that the city will consider the rate adjustment only if a homeowner has, in fact, left water running and their bill is greater than usual.

Sale of house approved

February 27, 2014 by Administrator · Leave a Comment 

Three Rivers city officials have approved the sale of a house that is part of the Neighborhood Stabilization Program.

During last week’s city commission meeting, final approval was given for the sale of the residence at 516 Eighth St. for $86,000.

Mayor Tom Lowry said the sale marks the third residence constructed by the city and sold through the NSP program.

City Manager Joe Bippus indicated the NSP grants have been exhausted, though he was encouraged to stay abreast of any potential grants in the future.

Mayors’ Exchange Day

February 25, 2014 by Administrator · Leave a Comment 

Members of the Constantine Village Council have agreed to participate in the 2014 Mayors’ Exchange Day.

Organized for the past 17 years by the Michigan Association of Mayors and Michigan Municipal League, the exchange will take place in May and involve Constantine Village President Pat Weiss and other municipal officials.

The exchange community has not yet been identified.

Council president Pat Weiss said last year’s pairing of Constantine and Blissfield was a fun and beneficial experience.

City officials from Blissfield took a walking tour of downtown Constantine, toured schools, the township library, local museum, American Legion Post 223, DPW, Pioneer Hi-Bred International and Vaupell Midwest Molding.

City Commission could approve ordinance

February 24, 2014 by Administrator · Leave a Comment 

Members of the Three Rivers City Commission could be less than a month from approving an ordinance regulating donation boxes.

Following discussion on the matter during Tuesday’s meeting, Mayor Tom Lowry and commissioners ironed out a few specifics to a draft ordinance presented Feb. 4 by city attorney Pat O’Malley. With the feedback presented Tuesday, O’Malley will make revisions and potentially have a final draft ready for first reading March 4.

According to terms of the proposed ordinance, the city would allow non-profit, local organizations to obtain a special-exception permit in order to keep a box anywhere in the city.

If an ordinance is approved, commissioners are expected to allow current boxes to remain in place for one year if they aren’t in compliance with the non-profit, local requirement.

Commissioners agreed “local” means St. Joseph County-based.

Sturgis to purchase truck

February 24, 2014 by Administrator · Leave a Comment 

The Sturgis Electric Department has been given approval to proceed with the purchase of a new bucket truck and a mini-derrick aerial lift.

The bucket truck and aerial lift will be purchased from Altec for a combined $ 221,528 and come from the motor-vehicle fund included in the current year’s budget.

It is intended to replace a 2002 model in the fleet.

The aerial lift will be used to rebuild or remove backyard-distribution systems. The lift is mounted on a trailer and provides access to areas currently impossible to reach by the city’s line trucks.

The lift also will be used to set and remove poles, transformers, cross arms and other equipment quicker and more efficiently.

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