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Politics

50th Anniversary of Community Mental Health Act

State Rep. Matt Lori and state Sen. Rebekah Warren, of Ann Arbor, introduced resolutions Thursday to commemorate the 50th anniversary of President Kennedy’s signing of the Community Mental Health Act. In February, Lori and Warren were appointed by Gov. Rick Snyder to the Mental Health and Wellness Commission, and the two have been working to identify and address gaps in …

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Tax-break for businesses

Members of the Sturgis City Commission last week approved tax-break requests for three businesses. The requests for Industrial Facilities Exemption Certificates were granted to Mayer Tool and Engineering, Americraft Carton and Burr Oak Tool. Mayer Tool’s request was for a 12-year abatement of almost $55,000 on the purchase of new equipment. Americraft Carton sought $6.2 million was for new equipment …

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Plant to get reimbursed

Constantine village and township plan to reimburse more than $200,000 owed to a former manufacturing plant following a reassessment of its property taxes. Village officials this week were told Rexam Closure Systems appealed its 2011 tax assessment. The assessment was $11.2 million but reduced to $4.5 million following its appeal. As a result, the village and township owe a total …

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Sales-tax relief

State Rep. Matt Lori on Tuesday voted for legislation that offers sales-tax relief for Michigan residents who buy new and used vehicles and watercraft. The House and Senate approved bills that eliminate buyers having to pay sales tax on the full price of a car, watercraft or recreational vehicle purchase without subtracting the value of trade-ins. Michigan is one of …

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Conservation District keeps allowance

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 …

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New superintendent of water plant

The Three Rivers City Commission has named Doug Humbert as the new superintendent of the Three Rivers Wastewater Treatment Plant. The move by Mayor Tom Lowry and commissioners came during last week’s city commission meeting. Humbert replaces James Baker, whose last day is today before joining the wastewater plant operated by the city of Kalamazoo. Humbert is a 10-year employee …

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Employees recognized

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, …

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Concerns for County Conservation District

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 …

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Commission agrees on purchases

Three Rivers Mayor Tom Lowry and commissioners last week agreed to two major purchases. In advance of winter weather, the city commission approved the purchase of 5,000 pounds of road salt. The $24,000 transaction will call for 60 percent of the salt to be delivered ahead of the season and the balance will be shipped later in the winter. Also, …

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Neighborhood program to receive grant

State Rep. Matt Lori has announced the Sturgis Neighborhood Program will receive a $30,000 grant from the Michigan State Housing Development Authority. The grant, from the Housing Resource Fund, will be used to support general operating expenses of the organization, which serves residents of the city of Sturgis and the surrounding area. Lori said the Sturgis Neighborhood Program serves to …

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