St. Joseph County animal control director Tom Miller said the department saw a revenue increase from 2011 to 2012.
In addition, Miller said fewer dogs were euthanized in 2012 compared to 2011.
Miller addressed the St. Joseph County Board of Commissioner Tuesday, presenting to the five-member panel his annual report.
The department euthanized 111 dogs last year, 77 fewer than it did in 2011. As far as revenue, Miller said the department took in more than $132,000 last year. That marked an increase from $117,000 in 2011.
About $20,000 was secured through donations; more than $88,000 from dog kennel and license fees.
A Florence Township official will have to look for an alternative source of financial help to address a crumbling roadway in his jurisdiction, as he was turned down for assistance by county officials Tuesday.
For the second time in two months, Florence Township Supervisor Gordon Evilsizor asked the commission for consideration to help replace Constantine Road from Dickinson north to Fairchild roads. A cost estimate he shared was $718,000 for rebuilding the roadway through Florence Township.
Evilsizor said the condition of the roadway is dangerous and motorists are forced to drive in the middle to avoid potholes and blemishes along the edges of the road.
Commission Chairman John Dobberten acknowledged the deteriorating condition of county roads in general. For local units to come in and expect the county to pick up the cost of repairs, however, is “unimaginable,” he said, as the county has hundreds of miles of roadways under its jurisdiction.
Dobberteen said he would encourage the county road commission to increase its annual assessment when it is up for renewal next year, or urge local units of government to follow the lead of the city of Sturgis and offer a millage specifically for road repairs.
A longtime Three Rivers city employee and community icon has passed away.
Ken Baker, who served in a variety of roles for the municipality, died Tuesday evening following a long battle with kidney cancer. He was 71.
Baker started his career with the city as a patrol officer for the Three Rivers Police Department. He was later promoted to sergeant and spent the last three years of his 24-year law-enforcement career as chief.
He would then serve as acting city manager before his peer from the police department, Joe Bippus, took over the post full-time.
Baker subsequently spent six years as a city commissioner and in 2011, was appointed mayor for the year after Allen Balog left to serve as a county commissioner.
Funeral arrangements for Baker, who was the grand marshal of the 2013 Three Rivers Water Festival parade, are pending.
A 2014 allocation for the St. Joseph County Conservation District appears to be secured, as agency supporters successfully pleaded their case to county officials Monday.
The district was at risk of losing its annual $14,000 allowance after county commission members last week unveiled St. Joseph County’s proposed 2014 fiscal year budget.
Monday’s appeal included nearly an hour of discussion centering on the proposed budget and its ramifications on the Centreville-based conservation district.
Carol Higgins, chair of the five-member Conservation District Board, said the agency’s river cleanup annual tree-seedling, erosion-control education program Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assistance Program and duties related to the National Resources Conservation Service all hold equal weight in what the district provides St. Joseph County.
Sherman Township Supervisor Bruce Bart and a handful of other residents attended Monday’s session and indicated support for the agency, which earned the reprieve after an informal poll of county commissioners.
A public hearing on the county’s proposed 2014 budget takes place Nov. 19.
Seventeen St. Joseph County employees were recognized Tuesday for reaching milestone years of service.
The St. Joseph County Board of Commissioners acknowledged employees who had reached the 10-, 15-, 20- and 25-year plateau. The 25-year category featured three recipients: Det.-Sgt. Jim Hart, patrol officer Pete VanCamp and IT director Dan Wing.
The group of 20-year employees consisted of Mike Minger, Brad Balk, Sally Wickum, Vicky Anders, Lonnie Palmer and Kitty Buchner.
Concerns about the potential demise of the St. Joseph County Conservation District were raised during Tuesday’s St. Joseph County Board of Commissioners meeting.
In light of Monday’s 2014 budget work session, during which commissioners proposed not funding the conservation district, John Nelson addressed the five-member commission.
Nelson, vice-chair of the Conservation District Board, questioned why the district is also possibly being stripped of the seven annual river cleanup events and countywide irrigation assistance. If the budget is approved, the duties questioned by Nelson would fall to the county’s Parks and Recreation Department and MSU Extension office, respectively.
Commission Chairman John Dobberteen invited Nelson to attend an appeal session at 3 p.m. Monday at the courthouse.
Under the proposed budget, the $14,000 previously allocated to the district would go to the parks and recreation department to offset costs associated with the river cleanup.
The county’s 2014 fiscal year starts Jan. 1.