Adams Excavating will provide snow-removal and plowing services for St. Joseph County again this winter.
The St. Joseph County Board of Commissioners last week renewed a contract for the winter services at the courthouse parking lot, the parks building and animal-control parking lot, and the sheriff’s department/central dispatch parking lot.
Scott Adams, a Centreville resident, will provide his services when accumulation has reached two inches or more, according to terms of the independent-contractor agreement. The contract is in effect through April 15.
Adams will be required to have lots cleared by 7:30 a.m. in the event of overnight snow.
Adams will be paid $375 per snow-clearing/plowing incident.
The contract was awarded to Adams, as no other bids for the job were submitted.
Appointments and re-appointments were made by members of the St. Joseph County Board of Commissioners last week.
Constantine-area resident David Miars was reappointed to another three-year term on the county’s Board of Public Works. His current term expires at the end of the year.
Deb Leyes of Sturgis was tapped to serve a one-year term as a general-public representative on the Central Dispatch Policy Board. Her appointment fills a vacancy on the board.
Four members on the St. Joseph County Planning Commission Board were reappointed to three-year terms. They are: James Griffith of Flowerfield Township, Mark Ripplinger of Mottville Township, Doug Pagels of Fawn River Township, and Warren Atkins of White Pigeon Township.
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.