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County commission approves union agreements

A month after supporting a tentative agreement, St. Joseph County Board of Commissioners made official its agreements with nine county unions. Commissioners approved the three-year proposals, which had already been ratified by the respective unions. In all, the nine unions represent more than 100 employees; nearly two-thirds of whom work for the sheriff’s department. County administrator Teresa Doehring noted that …

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Two dogs that escaped man’s euthanasia request find new home

Two dogs that escaped death when a northwestern Indiana veterinarian refused their owner’s request to have the healthy canines euthanized have found a new home together with an Illinois couple. The man who’d owned Sam, a pointer, and Cosmo, a Lab mix, had divorced and was moving in with his girlfriend, who said she was allergic to dogs. He visited …

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County commission makes hiring freeze exception

St. Joseph County Board of Commissioners recently made two exceptions to the county’s hiring freeze. With the departure of finance director Ryan Post, county administrator Teresa Doehring was granted approval to seek a replacement. The salary range, including fringe benefits, is between $80,000 and $100,000 a year. Meanwhile, the other exception was granted to juvenile court regarding its need to …

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Woman injured trying to avoid deer

A Vandalia woman was injured this week after swerving her vehicle to avoid striking a deer in Cass County’s Howard Township. Sheriff Richard Behnke said Joyce Kocher, 33, was driving west on M-60 when the deer appeared in the roadway. She drove off the road and her vehicle struck a tree, authorities said. The incident occurred just west of Burn …

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County approves Indigent Defense Agreement

St. Joseph County officials last week approved the 2019 Indigent Defense Agreement. County administrator Teresa Doehring said the agreement represents a 2 percent increase compared to the 2018 agreement. The county’s allocation for the agreement is $567,528. Doehring said the caseload of indigent clients averages about 25 weekly. According to terms of the seven-page agreement, there will be the full-time …

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New engine for TR Fire Department

The Three Rivers Fire Department last week unveiled the newest addition to its vehicle fleet. The Spartan 180 fire engine cost $435,000 and has the capacity to pump 1,500 gallons of water per minute, according to chief Carl Holcomb. He added that the truck can carry 750 gallons of water through its onboard tank. With the latest vehicle delivered, the …

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Trooper suffers minor injuries after Indiana toll road crash

A state trooper has been injured after his marked patrol car crashed along the Indiana Toll Road in St. Joseph County near South Bend. State police say Master Trooper Bradley Kaizer was released Wednesday from a hospital after receiving treatment for cuts and abrasions. Kaizer was attempting to catch up to another vehicle for a traffic violation about 8 a.m. …

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County administrator contract renewed

Teresa Doehring is wrapping up her first full year as county administrator and by all indications, the five-member board of commissioners is pleased with her effort. The 44-year-old Doehring received a contract renewal and a 2 percent raise in the capacity of the county’s highest, non-elected position. Both matters were approved unanimously by county commissioners last week. A lifelong Mendon-area …

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Two fires caused by wood-burning stoves

Investigators said wood-burning stoves are believed to be the source of two fires Saturday in St. Joseph County. On Saturday afternoon, firefighters were called to 70861 Sevison Road in White Pigeon Township after a report of a pole barn on fire. Authorities were told a family member could see the corner of the structure near a wood burner that was …

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Centreville Schools stock food pantry

Centreville Public Schools and a number of its volunteers were successful in a recent attempt to “Stuff the Bus.” High school principal Chad Brady said the effort was co-organized by the high school’s Future Farmers of America students and its National Honor Society members. Brady and Centreville Elementary Principal Mark VanderKlok joined students and parent volunteers during the Dec. 8 …

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