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Politics

City mayor and manager testify about tax policy in Lansing

Three Rivers Mayor Tom Lowry and city manager Joe Bippus joined state Rep. Aaron Miller in Lansing last week to testify about tax fairness before the House Committee on Tax Policy. Lowry and Bippus said big stores should be subject to common-sense property tax rates so that municipal governments don’t have to cut their budgets to adjust to the lower …

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Shaffer plans Township supervisor run

A St. Joseph County commissioner said he plans to run for Lockport Township supervisor in next year’s general election. Rick Shaffer, a 20-year commission member, said he will not seek reelection when his two-year term expires at the end of 2016. Shaffer stated he plans to remain active in the community but his main focus will be a run for …

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Roads funding topic of discussion for county commission

For the third time in three months, Florence Township Supervisor Gordon Evilszior asked members of the county commission to consider funding a rehab of what is generally considered the worst road in St. Joseph County. Evilsizor has been seeking assistance to help correct a stretch of Constantine Road in White Pigeon and Florence townships. The north-south route forms the border …

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Low voter turnout in Three Rivers

Not surprisingly, a low voter turnout was recorded in three municipalities where elections took place Tuesday. In Three Rivers, about 5 percent of the city’s 5,100 registered voters participated in an uncontested election that saw Mayor Tom Lowry secure an additional two-year term. The 59-year-old Lowry, who has served as mayor of St. Joseph County’s second-largest community for 16 years, …

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Burr Oak approves sinking-fund millage

Voters in Burr Oak Community Schools were in a generous mood Tuesday, as a sinking-fund millage was approved by nearly a three-to-two margin. The 3-mill, five-year sinking fund request was supported by a vote of 116 in favor to 71 opposed. Tuesday’s request is identical to what was on the ballot in the May 5 election, when voters defeated the …

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Sturgis dog ordinance defeated

A proposed ordinance allowing more than two dogs in a single-family residence was defeated Tuesday by Sturgis voters. The proposed measure, which would have allowed up to three dogs in a residence, was defeated, 245 opposed to 132 in favor. In May, voters rejected a proposed ordinance amendment that would have lifted any limit on the number of dogs at …

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Sturgis dog ordinance on ballot

For the second time in 2015, Sturgis voters will decide how many dogs can be kept at any single-family residence inside the city limits, without requiring an approved kennel designation. In May, voters rejected a proposed ordinance amendment that would have lifted any limit on the number of dogs at Sturgis properties. Following that vote, several residents asked the commission …

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Burr Oak Schools millage on ballot

Burr Oak Community Schools again will ask voters to approve a 3-mill, five-year sinking fund request. The Nov. 3 request is identical to what was on the ballot in the May 5 election, when voters defeated the measure, 111-91. The millage would bring approximately $125,000 per year for the schools for the next five years for a total of $625,000. …

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Transportation bills head to Senate

State Rep. Aaron Miller this week voted in favor of a $1.2 billion legislative package to fix Michigan’s transportation system, including a bill he introduced that increases the use of competitive bidding for local road and bridge projects. Miller said House Bill 4610 expands the use of competitive bidding to keep the costs of road and bridge repair more affordable …

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GOP presidential contender Cruz to campaign in Kalamazoo

Republican presidential contender Ted Cruz will campaign in Michigan next week. The Texas senator plans to speak at a morning rally at the Wings Event Center in Kalamazoo on Oct. 5. Cruz was recently in Michigan for a Republican gathering on Mackinac Island. Other candidates in the crowded GOP field who attended were former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, former technology …

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