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County Transportation seeks millage renewal

April 11, 2014 by Administrator · Leave a Comment 

The St. Joseph County Transportation Authority is seeking approval for a millage-request renewal in August.

During Thursday’s St. Joseph County Board of Commissioners’ executive committee meeting, CTA director Steve Yorks said the request would ask for renewal of 0.33 mills for a four-year period.

Committee members recommended the request appears before the board during its twice-a-month meeting Tuesday.

After it was established by voter approval in 2007, the millage was renewed by a 2-to-1 margin in 2010 for four years. Yorks said the 0.33 mills this year generated about $622,000 for the countywide transportation service.

The St. Joseph County Road Commission is expected to place a millage renewal before county voters during the August vote, as well.

County officials request new units

April 11, 2014 by Administrator · Leave a Comment 

St. Joseph County officials acknowledged a grant-application request from the sheriff’s department for preliminary-breath-test units.

During Thursday’s executive committee meeting, county administrator Pat Yoder said law enforcement agencies in the county use the PBT units to assist deputies with drivers suspected of being intoxicated or impaired.

Time and usage has resulted in a need for new units.

Committee members agreed to add the matter to Tuesday’s agenda for action by the commission.

The grant would cover the purchase of 42 devices, which are used by the sheriff’s department and distributed to police departments in each of the county’s eight municipalities.

Included in the grant are 28 bags of disposable mouth pieces; each bag contains 250 mouth pieces. Total amount of the purchase is $13,100.

One-time removal of items from properties

April 10, 2014 by Administrator · Leave a Comment 

Starting Monday, the city of Three Rivers will partner with Waste Management to provide a one-time removal of items from residential properties.

Items will be picked up by district beginning with the 1st District Monday, 2nd District Tuesday, 3rd District Wednesday and 4th District Thursday.

Items to be picked up should be placed on the terrace area along with regular trash. City clerk Melissa Bliss said Waste Management will pick up regular trash only for its customers. Residents who have large items for the one-time pickup do not have to be Waste Management customers.

The event does not include residents in the downtown area. The downtown area will be provided dumpsters during the Community Pride Day May 10.

Inspection completed

April 10, 2014 by Administrator · Leave a Comment 

The St. Joseph County Board of Election Canvassers completed a once-every-four-years task Wednesday.

According to state law, every county’s board of election canvassers must complete an inspection of ballot boxes and bags. County Clerk Pattie Bender said the task previously was performed over a two-day period, when she and the four-member board traveled to all 16 townships and the cities of Three Rivers and Sturgis.

This time, Bender and board members set up a check station at the county fairgrounds and representatives from the 18 entities made the trip to Centreville. It was an all-day job, as Bender scheduled each entity in 15-minute increments. But, she said, it’s a relief to have the task out of the way before a May 6 vote.

Bender said the inspection ensures it’s impossible to tamper with ballots. She said the inspections Wednesday yielded no problems.

Closing area garages

April 9, 2014 by Administrator · Leave a Comment 

The St. Joseph County Road Commission has announced it is closing its Colon Township and Three Rivers-area garages. The move means three area foremen, including the Centreville area foreman, will be offered an early-retirement incentive.

The positions will be eliminated effective May 1.

Operations from Colon, Centreville, and Three Rivers garages/districts will be gradually folded into the central facility in Centreville. Christopher Bolt, engineer/manager, said the positions will be replaced by one new director of operations position.

Bolt said the agency in 10 years has seen its share of Michigan Transportation Fund dollars drop from $5.5 million a year to $4.5 million annually.

He said for now, St. Joseph County will retain ownership of the Colon and Three Rivers-area garages. They will come in handy for storage of equipment and materials, and maybe even serve as temporary headquarters for crews working on larger projects in the area, he said.

Meijer looking to build in Sturgis

April 8, 2014 by Administrator · Leave a Comment 

The Meijer grocery chain has confirmed it is looking into a new store in Sturgis.

Later this month, the Sturgis Planning Commission will review site plans provided by the store regarding a site at South Centerville Road and West South Street. The location is north of the Sturgis Walmart.

Preliminary plans call for a building just under 200,000-square-feet, though its size is subject to change depending on discussions at the planning commission’s April 15 meeting.

City manager Mike Hughes said departments such as engineering, police and fire will review the plans and offer recommendations based on their evaluations.

The site plan must meet access, zoning and green space requirements set by the city in order to be approved.

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