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Break-in reported in Burr Oak

A former bar in Burr Oak Township was burglarized last week. State police said a breaking-and-entering report was filed from the former Jorge’s Bar, on U.S. 12 at Halfway Road. Several items of NASCAR memorabilia, as well as collectible knives and other items were taken from the building. The incident is believed to have occurred at some point during a …

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Man shot during home invasion

An Elkhart man was shot after breaking in to a Cass County residence late last week. Sheriff Richard Behnke said deputies were called around 6:30 p.m. Friday to a home invasion in the 20000 block of Marcellus Highway in Violina Township. Deputies said Jonathon Niswonger, 35, and Shasta Blankenmyer, 34, were at home when the 34-year-old suspect attempted to force …

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Man charged with multiple charges in Sturgis

A Colon man was arrested in Sturgis last week after an incident involving a knife. Sturgis police said officers were called shortly before 4:30 a.m. Friday to the 400 block of West South Street in response to a man with a knife threatening people. Upon arrival, officers were told the suspect had entered Walmart, where he was eventually taken into …

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Natural-gas rate increase approved

Michigan regulators have approved a 9.2 percent natural-gas rate increase for 300,000 customers of SEMCO Energy Gas. The utility will use the nearly $20 million rate increase to replace gas mains and initiate an infrastructure reliability-improvement program. The Port Huron-based company delivers natural gas to customers in the southern half of the Lower Peninsula, including St. Joseph and Cass counties, …

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Michigan OKs 9% natural gas rate hike for SEMCO customers

Michigan regulators have approved a 9.2% natural gas rate increase for 300,000 customers of SEMCO Energy Gas. The utility will use the nearly $20 million rate increase to replace gas mains and initiate an infrastructure reliability improvement program. The Port Huron-based company delivers natural gas to customers in the southern half of the Lower Peninsula and in parts of the …

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Colon plans Christmas celebration

The 11th annual Christmas in Colon will be celebrated this weekend. Sponsored by the Colon Area Chamber of Commerce, Christmas in Colon will feature activities, food, attractions, music and holiday cheer starting today and concluding Saturday. Pam Gilbert, chamber president, said one change this year will be Santa at the Colon Township Library, 5 to 8 p.m. Saturday instead of …

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IAC in Mendon to close

A major employer in Mendon plans to close next year. Auto supplier International Automotive Components Group informed United Auto Workers Local 503 members that the plant will shut down in May after current work orders are fulfilled. Union officials indicated they are meeting today with company representatives in order to secure severance packages for the 230 people affected by the …

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County commission approves 2 year budget

An unprecedented measure in St. Joseph County history was taken this week when county officials approved a two-year budget. The fiscal-year 2020 budget in excess of $18 million was approved Tuesday by the St. Joseph County Board of Commissioners. In addition, an $18.4 million budget for fiscal year 2021 was OK’d. The county’s fiscal year starts Jan. 1. Finance director …

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Lillywhite will serve remainder of Balk’s term

A three-member panel of county officials selected Mark Lillywhite to serve the 11 remaining months of Brad Balk’s term as sheriff. Balk recently announced he will retire Jan. 31, 11 months before the conclusion of the four-year term to which he was elected in November 2016. By law, the appointment to fulfill the balance of Balk’s term was to be …

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Vehicle stolen in Sturgis

A vehicle was stolen at gunpoint Wednesday outside a Sturgis residence. Sgt. Damon Knapp said the incident occurred at 5 a.m. in the 200 block of North Prospect Street. Knapp said the victim left his truck running in his driveway and returned inside his residence. During that time, an unknown subject dressed in black got into the truck and pointed …

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