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County commits to purchase of Stewart Lake parcel

Six months after allocating funds toward the purchase of a Burr Oak Township property, members of the St. Joseph County Board of Commissioners have formally committed to the transaction. Tuesday’s purchase agreement centered on what has been called the Stewart Lake parcel. The 126-acre property includes a body of water and will be managed by the county’s parks and recreation …

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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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Commission handles personnel matters

Three personnel matters were handled last week by the St. Joseph County Board of Commissioners. The commission accepted the resignation of Lydia Paille, deputy equalization director. A pay increase from $18.29 an hour to $19.59 hourly was approved for Erin Goff, community corrections coordinator. Also, Joshua Shook has been hired as animal control officer and facility supervisor at an hourly …

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Child Trauma Assessment Group receives budget shortfall funds

The St. Joseph County Child Trauma Assessment Group was provided $50,000 to help it meet a projected budget shortfall. The request was pitched last week to members of the county board of commissioners by Probate Court Judge David Tomlinson and probate court director Thomas Robertson. Tomlinson said the state might refund St. Joseph County half of the $50,000, but the …

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Connectivity upgrades coming to Animal Control

A Jackson-based company was selected last week to replace the existing wireless connection at the county’s Animal Control facility. County commission members have accepted a $6,100 bid from Challenger Technologies LLC to install fiber-optic cable from Animal Control to the sheriff’s department. Teresa Doehring, county human resources director, said the replacement will significantly improve the quality and reliability of data …

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Two attorneys added to contract defender system

Two area attorneys were added to St. Joseph County’s Contract Defender System. Following action Tuesday last week by the St. Joseph County Board of Commissioners, Luke Nofsinger and Kevin Kane were included to the roster of contract defenders. The change was necessary following Kevin Kleidon’s passing earlier this year. For housekeeping reasons, Kleidon’s name was removed from the roster.

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TR Cares presented petition to commissioners

A representative from the group TR Cares last week presented to county commissioners a petition signed by a number of registered voters asking for a review of Lindsay Oswald’s appointment as county clerk. Furthermore, Doug Bingaman said the petition urges commissioners to issue a public statement, asking Oswald to not seek the position when it appears before voters next year. …

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Commissioners approve contract changes

The St. Joseph County Board of Commissioners last week approved contract changes to three sheriff’s department divisions. During Tuesday’s meeting, commissioners agreed to the modifications starting in 2016 and impacting the department’s corrections, law-enforcement and command-officers divisions. Notable changes include a 2 percent raise in 2017 and again in 2018 in all three divisions, and a pension revision affecting employees …

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Disabled vets offered chance to hunt

St. Joseph County’s Board of Commissioners has thrown its support behind an event – believed to be the first of its kind locally – in which disabled veterans will have the opportunity to deer hunt. Organized by the county’s veterans services director Stoney Summey and parks and recreation director Jaymes MacDonald, the so-called Veterans’ Hunt 2015 will be conducted now …

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Funds request, labor agreements among items on County Commission agenda

Thirteen items, including a request for funds for the Child Trauma Assessment Group, await the St. Joseph County Board of Commissioners this afternoon. Other matters on today’s agenda include labor agreements with three governmental units, a request for a letter of support from Covered Bridge Healthcare, a request to fill the position of deputy equalizer and a request to close …

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