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Wednesday, Jan. 17, 2018

An outdated and deteriorating operation that has outlived its relevance has motivated the Isabella County Road Commission to move another step closer to obtaining funding needed for a rebuild. County Commissioners voted last night to directed the road commission to provide more information on the financial plan to replace its facility. Although the road commission does not need county board approval to build, statute requires that the county back the type of bond funding they are pursuing for what looks to be about a $10 million project.  The High Street facility was built nearly 70 years ago and is not structurally sound, according to a feasibility study commissioned. Among the findings of that study the old building does not accommodate larger modern road commission equipment, contains lead and asbestos and has outdated heating, cooling and technology systems. You can read more about in the story on themorningusn.com

 

After more than a year of work  Owners of The Main Cafe in Alma say they can see the light at the end of the tunnel. Right now they’re working through inspections, permitting and final steps...they say they’re hopeful within two or three months, the doors of popular downtown restaurant can finally reopen. One big thing missing is a finished kitchen...until inspections and plans are approved, equipment will not be installed...in the meantime customers can take a peek through the front windows to catch a glimpse of the redesign.

 

A Mt. Pleasant man faces a felony domestic violence charge after police say he assaulted his girlfriend, at one point taking her phone and threatening to bury her alive. if convicted it will be the man’s third time for domestic violence, elevating the charge from a misdemeanor to a five-year felony. The victim said she went to the 61-year-olds home with the intention of ending their one-year relationship; he grabbed her hand, threw her phone into the snow and told her he would kill her and bury her alive. SHe told police she was afraid he’d find her and follow through on the threat. He bonded out of jail on 10 percent of a $30,000 bond; you can read more in that story on the morningsun.com

 

If you check out WCMU’s quiz central tonight, you might see a couple of familiar faces. Mt. Pleasant High School’s quiz bowl team is set to compete tonight’. Mt. PLeasant faces Flushing tonight at 7:30...the winning team will move on in competition, hoping to win the division championship and then later face off to become the overall winner; it’s not just bragging rights at stake; winning team members earn scholarship money as well.

Alma has received 16 applications from candidates interested in its city manager position as of yesterday’s deadline.  Today a subcommittee responsible for the search process will meet to review the applications and do an initial review for qualifications required for the job. Once narrowed down interviews will be scheduled and finalist names will be made public. Interim city manager Matt Schooley is set to  remain in the position until it is filled.

 

Did you see a big flash in the sky or hear what sounded like a clap of thunder Tuesday night? If so, you weren’t alone. Numerous reports flooded social media, as well as Michigan State Police and the National Weather Service. The preliminary consensus seems to be it was a meteor entering the atmosphere. Reports came in from across the Great Lakes region starting around 8:15 pm, but so far, there no one can say where the possible meteor landed. Dozens of people reported seeing a bright white flash in the sky, followed by a loud, house-shaking sound. And, The United States Geological Survey reports a 2.0 magnitude earthquake at the same time which could be contributed to the possible meteor

 

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Water levels across the great lakes are rising for a fourth winter after hitting record lows in 2013. this year most likely because of cold temperatures. Levels for the lakes right now average nearly 2 feet higher than the long-term average over the past century but they will decline as we approach march...Officials predict water levels will have an overall increase this winter of 4 to 6 inches; Water levels depend on snow accumulation across the Great Lakes basin and ice on the lakes, which can slow water evaporation…
 

Changes in state law regarding underage drinkers are a second chance, of sorts, for those caught. But only if it’s a first offense. A new state law, which took effect on New Year’s Day, makes it a civil infraction for those 17 to 20 who are charged with minor in possession of alcohol. Previously, an MIP was a misdemeanor, which could show up on a person’s record for years to come. the chnage might not have as big of an effect in Isabella County where a program is already in place to help first offenders. Under the new state law, being cited for MIP could result in a $100 fine, for first offense while a second offense is a misdemeanor crime.
 

What started as a request to use a roommate’s cell phone escalated quickly after the machete and pipe wrench came out. A 29-year-old wanted to use his 55-year-old roommate’s cell phone, but the older man said the younger asked by charging into his bedroom with a pipe wrench and threatening to bust his head open if he didn’t get the phone; Luckily, the victim had a machete -still sheathed- nex to his bed, and used that to ward off his would be attacker until police came. The younger man was arrested.
 

It’s the year of the pickup truck at the 2018 North American International Auto Show in Detroit as General Motors, Fiat Chrysler and Ford unveil new trucks in a fast-growing and highly competitive U.S. auto market. Beyond more big truck reveals than ever before, the autoshow features the limited mew Mustang Bullit, to commemorate the original famously driven by Steve McQueen; after intense controversry, Volkswagen has a new line out; and Tesla is creating a lot of buzz with its latest creation. The Detroit Auto Show opens to the public on Saturday andhas hours through the following Sunday.
 

Does this feel like a harsh winter so far? It turns out, among the ways meteorologists analyze the season is the severity index, which bascially looks at how the season would feel to a local compared to past winters. It looks at daily avearage snow fall, snow on teh ground, temperature and more and compares it to current numbers...in Michigan, Detroit is having the most extreme winter so far, with Lansing and grand Rapids close behind. Alpena and other northerin michigan areas are jsut average in terms of how it feels to anyeone who has lived there in past winters.
 

Michigan is well-positioned to grow jobs in six emerging sectors, according to a recent report looking at economic opportunity in the state. Clean energy, food and agricultuer, water technology, Transportation and mobility, Health services, and data and information….A history of autmotive innovation, a large university research base contribute to the advantage the state has; teh study also recommends investing more in innovation encouarage business and jobs to come to Micigan, as well as funding Green and Blue city initiatives to enoucrage growth in those six sectors.


Monday, Jan. 15, 2018

Mt. Pleasant residents in need can once again find food assistance At a permanent pantry, after the  Community Compassion Network opened a store on W. High Street. THe building also houses the homeless day shelter and other non-profit services; the food pantry is set up a lot like a traditional grocery store and has hours weds-sat. Each week. It’s been three years since CCN’s former standing pantry on Broomfield road closed and since, a rotating mobile food pantry has served those with food insecurity challenges. You can read more in that story on themornignsun.com

A small fire sparked by a neon sign at Mt. Pleasant’s Pixie Restaurant caused minimum damage and  a lot of worry throughout the community. A transformer shorted out when the lights were turned on; an employee who lives nearby was leaving his home at around 830 saturday morning when he saw the fire; Some of the restaurant suffered smoke damage...they closed for a short time, first reopening the drive thru later on Saturday; yesterday, the restaurant announced on Facebook that the dining room was opened for customers as well.

From an initial list of more than 90, just four sections of road remain closed in Isabella County after sustaining damage during heavy rains and flooding last June. It could still be a year or longer until all are opened. An inconvenience for residents that can be taxing on alternate route roads in the meantime, the road commission says patience is key in securing money to cover the high price tags of repairing and rebuilding. THe roads include Blanchard between crawford and lincoln, two stretches of loomis road and Wise at M-20. The four roads in total will costs about $2 million to fix; you can read more about the repairs, the search for funding and more on themorningsun.com

 

Thousands of Isabella COunty residents who are uninsured or underinsured motivated a mid-Michigan hospital to re-open its free medical clinic.  McLaren Central Michigan’s free clinic is open to the public now on the first thursday of each month from 4pm to 6pm. They don’t schedule appointments but takes patients on a first-come, first-serve basis. As the needs are assessed, the number of days and times the clinic is open could change.

 

A push alert that warned of a ballistic missile heading straight for Hawaii and sent residents into a full-blown panic Saturday was issued by mistake. The emergency alert, which was sent to cellphones, said in all caps, “Ballistic missile threat inbound to Hawaii. Seek immediate shelter. This is not a drill.” The Hawaii Emergency Management Agency tweeted that there was a threat about 10 minutes later. t a revised push alert stating there was no threat went out sometime after that. it was a false alarm and the agency is trying to determine what happened…

 

Black Creek Conservation Club will start the new year with a fresh slate of officers after a court-ordered vote by membership this week, the latest in a lawsuit pitting members of the club against each other. That suit – filed last summer by long-time members and officers – contends the eastern Isabella County club was being taken over by militia members who sought to change the initiatives and direction….the vote this week resoundingly put the defendants in charge, including another win for last year’s club president. HE said he believes the conflict stems from misinformation and insists there is no militia activity at the shooting range. You can find more details and background in that story on themornignsun.com

 

 

Friday, Jan. 12, 2018

Two men are facing drug charges after a Clare County deputy found them passed out in a stolen car sitting in an intersection with a meth lab inside. Other motorists called police about 3:30 Saturday morning for the car stopped at South Clare Avenue (Old US-27) and Mannsiding Road, just south of Harrison When police tried to wake the 24-year-old drover,  became combative with the deputy. The the passenger woke up, jumped out and ran at the officer. POlice found a mobile meth lab and components of making meth in the car.

General Motors announced that it has asked the government for permission to put mass-produced, autonomous cars on the road without a steering wheel or any pedals by next year.  The Cruise AV "is designed to operate safely on its own, with no driver or  manual controls..in 2017, GM had announced it would launch self-driving vehicles meant for deliveries and ride-hailing services in five U.S. markets in 2019.

A Mt. Pleasant man on parole for forgery and other crimes was arraigned Wednesday after police said he used another man’s checks and debit cards to buy hundreds of dollars in pizza and other items. Sammy Michael Neupert Jr., 39, was on parole when he was arrested in December after an investigation into $890 in checks written to Pisanello’s Pizza were returned by the bank...he faces forgery, uttering and publishing, identity theft and more felony charges...his most recent convictions include failing to register as a sex offender as well as identity theft. You can read more in that story on themornignsun.com

Part of an Alma school bus fell into a sink hole at the corner of Marshall and Adams yesterday afternoon, injuring an adult aid in the bus; no students were hurt in the accident, which happened around 730 in the morning as the bus was transporting kids to school. Two other cars were damaged when they rounded the corner and hit the sinkhole; when the bus passed next over the damaged pavement it got bigger, trapping some of the bus’s wheels. IT turned out a water main break below the street had corroded the ground causing the hole...once the accident scene was cleared, the water main break and the street were repaired.

plans to boost the defense of poor people in Isabella, Clare and Gratiot counties have won initial state approval, but the funding is on hold as further questions are answered. Counties across Michigan were required to submit plans outlining ways each legal system could meet new standards in public defense and what it would cost. Those standards will not become requirements unless the state funds grant requests to meet the difference. In all, Michigan counties submitted around $87 million in funding requests, of which more than $80 million was denied this week..the committee agreed the plans submitted by mid-michigan counties were solid but had questions on cost analysis; each county now has 30 days to revise the plans and submit them to the committee.

As officers from the Mt. PLeasant state police post  investigated a house fire in Ellsworth Township in Lake County yesterday, they first notified the public the elderly man who lived in the home had not been located; police asked the public for any information indicated where he might be; later in the day, police confirmed they had found human remains in the ruins of the fire but have not identified a victim yet; The fire, which started wednesday evening, is still under investigation. Watch the mornignsun.com for updates.

 

Thursday, Jan. 11, 2018

 A public hearing is set on Alma’s  medical marijuana draft ordinance after more changes were made this week. Officials have added stipulations that cultivation and processing centers cannot be within 500 feet of a residential area and 300 feet from a park or school. That planning commission hearing is set for 5:30 on March 12 at city hall….from that point, any approved draft would go to city commissioners for approval.

The State Department on Wednesday unveiled four tiered categories to warn travelers of potential dangers overseas, using common-sense language ranging from “Exercise normal precaution” to “Do not travel.” The new rankings replace the vague and often confusing system of issuing “travel alerts” for short-term dangers and “travel warnings” for long-standing concerns. The new rankings are applied to every country in the world and will explain why an advisory was made, with one-letter logos: C for crime, T for terrorism, U for civil unrest, H for health risks and so on.

As talks on preparing the latest iteration of the Farm Bill for Congressional approval continue ahead of a September expiry date, there's at least one thing Republicans and Democrats can agree on: bringing better internet to rural areas. Both sides agree that spreading 21st century jobs throughout the country requires access to high speed internet...it’s a key component of the farm bill, which also address crop insurance and farm regulations.

With winter here, the trees in downtown Mt. Pleasant are empty of anything except maybe Christmas lights, save for one: in front of the Downtown Drugs Soda Shoppe, one tree is full of hats, gloves, scarves and other cold-weather necessities. The plastic bags filled with mostly handmade items are free for the taking for anyone in need, courtesy of the women working inside the historic downtown business. The women said they wanted to help anyone who needs winter wear; you can add your own items to the tree as well, they suggest placing them in plastic bags first so they they’re not affected by wet weather.

The state of Michigan is suing Wolverine World Wide in federal court to recoup costs associated with an expansive probe into drinking water contamination, a move concurrent with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency increasing the federal government's role in the toxic chemical investigation. This week, the EPA ordered Wolverine to conduct more investigation into other toxic chemicals from the shoe company's former riverside tannery that have contaminated groundwater on the west side of the state;  Meanwhile, the state filed suit after new groundwater cleanup criteria for PFAS or PFCs took effect Wednesday.

Despite the freezing temperatures to kick of the new year, alma has not had to issue a “‘run water” notice to avoid freezing pipes in the city. Even so, commissioners voted this week to change the way residents are charged in the event of a let it run order. An average of oct, nov, and dec. bills from the previous year or their actual bill amount, whichever is greater; that rate is in effect until the run water notice expires

 

Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018

A 29-year-old Mt. Pleasant man pleaded guilty Monday to several felonies related to a string of graffiti vandalism as well as two drug charges, after a months-long investigation led police to a suspect last summer. Both Mt Pleasant and CMU police worked together to identify John Peter Obuchowski as a suspect, using video surveillance footage and undercover work. Graffiti identified on multiple buildings across the city and CMU’s campus and totaled around $9,000 in damage; there was no sentencing recommendation on the guilty plea though the judge indicated he would issue county jail time rather than a prison sentence. YOu can find more details in that story on themornigsun.com

Mt. Pleasant commissioners swore in two new members and picked a new mayor and vice mayor this week to kick off 2018. Allison Quast Lents -who has served as vice mayor since 2015- is the city’s newest mayor after commissioners elected her unanimously. Nicholas Madaj won the vice mayor spot in a 5 to 2 vote. In addition commissioners placed two mt. pleasant residents on the planning commission, choosing Christine Ortman and Kathy Rise from a slew of applicants.

A Mt. Pleasant woman known for her volunteer efforts in Isabella County has been honored with the 2017 Distinguished Citizen Award by the rotary Club of Mt. Pleasant. Janet Maar Strickler was nominated for the award Rotarian Amanda Schafer, who called Strickler a “dynamic individual” who works to connect others to causes she cares about. SHe’s served on the Woodland Hospice House Advisory Committee, Art Reach of Mid Michigan Board, and State Board of Directors for Michigan Special Olympics as well as many volunteer stints with other efforts; In addition, Strickler has encouraged young women to become active in philanthropy.

The Michigan Department of Agriculture is trying to ward off an outbreak of thousand cankers disease, which has killed numerous walnut trees in the western U.S…. State officials have issued a quarantine of some walnut products. The quarantine generally prohibits shipment of walnut nursery stock, certain walnut timber products and hardwood firewood into Michigan from infested states. Walnut furniture, veneer, kiln-dried walnut lumber without bark and walnut nuts and nutmeats are exempt.

An effort to remove an apparently abandoned car northwest of Mt. Pleasant turned more serious when the owner, who said her estranged husband had been using it, found drugs and an illegal handgun inside. A property owner in the 100 block of west River Road wanted the car moved...the woman told police she’d get it even though her soon-to-be-ex husband had been using it...but called police back for help when she found a gun -with the serial number removed- and some drugs in the car. The case is still under investigation.

 

An elderly Lake woman and her passenger were both killed Monday afternoon after pulling in front of oncoming traffic north of Reed City;  Maxine Mariann Joseph was eastbound on 11 Mile Road and stopped at a stop sign when she pulled across Mackinaw Trail and was hit by a northbound car. After the initial crash, the two vehicles struck a third vehicle stopped westbound at the intersection. Joseph, 68, died at the scene and her passenger, Gary William Carr, 70, also of Lake, suffered critical injuries and later died at Spectrum Reed City Hospital. Occupants of the other two vehicles were taken to hospitals and released after treatment.

 

 

Tuesday, January 9, 2018 -

For the second-straight year, Orkin has ranked Detroitat No. 7 on its annual list of the Top 50 Bed Bug Cities. Baltimore claimed the top spot for the second-straight year. Washington, D.C., Chicago, Los Angeles, Columbus, Ohio and Cincinnati were the other cities above detroit. The list is based info noting where Orkin performed the most bed bug treatments. The ranking includes both residential and commercial treatments. Grand Rapids jumped four spots to 23 in the list and the flint/ saginaw/bay city area hit the top 50 for the first time at 38th most bed bug infested.
 

Despite the bitter cold and even a few snow days for mid-Michigan students, road commissions say for them, it’s been a fairly mild winter. Isabella’s road commission has gone through about a third if its winter budget, right on track for the season. Part of that is the weather, and part is the salt and sand mixture the agency is using on slippery roads...sand is more than 20 times cheaper than salt, and actually more effective when temperatures dip into the teens and lower. You can read all about the road commission’s seaon so far in that story on themorningsun.com
 

You can help the Arbor Day foundation and get new trees to plant with one donation. A $10 donation fro new members earns 10 flowering trees, including american redbuds, white flowering dogwoods and more. The trees are shipped postpaid when the time is right for planting...between february and june depending on where you live. They come 6-12 inches tall and are guaranteed to grow or will be replaced. You can find more about the Arbor Day Foundations Trees across america campaign on their webiste.
 

The challenges of growing up black and female in apartheid South Africa have been the foundation of Nontombi Naomi Tutu’s life as an activist for human rights. The daughter of Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Naomi Tutu is set keynote Martin Luther King Jr. Week at Alma College. She will speak on “Being a Social Activist” at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 17 in the Remick Heritage Center, Presbyterian Hall. Admission is free and open to the public. It’s one of many events set for next week to celebrate MLK Jr. week at the college...you can find a full list at themorningsnun.com
 

Starting next week, Montcalm Community College is offering a month-long course to learn about dairy production; Presented by MCC and the MSU Institute of Agricultural Technology, the seminar for community members and students will include guest speakers, demonstrations, interactive discussions and field trips. The class is every Tuesday at the Sidney campus and will focus on Hoof care,, equipment troubleshooting, milk quality and more...The course is designed for professionals currently working in the dairy industry as well as those with interest but no experience, and 4-H and FFA members are welcome to participate. Each class costs $5 or $50 for all 11 in the seminiar, you can enroll at MCC’s website.
 

A Belding man was seriously injured Sunday after pulling into the path of an oncoming pickup truck. He was leaving the parking lot of a business when he pulled his Honda Accord onto Greenville Road south of Wise Road; rescue workers used the Jaws of Life to extratct the man after his car was struck; he was taken to a hospital with injuries, the other driver was not injured. Greenville Road was closed for a bout 30 minutes while rescue workers cleared the scene.


Monday, Jan. 8, 2018

A St. Louis man is scheduled for sentencing Feb. 20 in relation to a drunk driving crash in Alma that critically injured a woman. David Francis Cronkite, 57, pleaded no contest to operating while intoxicated causing serious injury….the plea recommends an 11 month jail sentence. His blood alcohol level was .23 when he hit a woman riding a tricycle in downtown Alma last year.

Twenty years ago, CMU instructor Steve Thompson wanted to help sexual assault victims feel so not-alone and help to change myths and perceptions surrounding those crimes and victims. Fast forward to now and his student group Sexual Assault Peer Advocates is the premiere student-centered effort of its kind in the country. Its flagship education program, “No Zebras. No Excuses,” is a staple of CMU freshman orientation and has even grown into a company headed by Thompson that shares the message all over the world. Students who go through the training - known as SAPAs- say once they learn to be an advocate the skill stays with them for life...read about the program as it marks two decades on themornigsun.com

As the Central Michigan University and mid-Michigan community learned of her death over the weekend, many remembered Dr. Nina Nash-Robertson — a recently retired music professor at CMU— as a joyful and talented fine arts teacher who inspired and connected people through music. Nash-Robertson died unexpectedly Saturday after a brain aneurysm Friday; she was 70-years-old. She directed choral programs through CMU’s school of music since 1982, and in those same years directed the Festival Chorus, which combined community members and CMU students into one performance group. Visitation is se for Thursday and the funeral is friday at First Presbyterian; you can find more details in that story on themorninguns.com

Wise Township’s first applicant for medical-marijuana business licenses has been approved for  three licenses; two for a grow operations up to 1,500 plants and one for a processing center.  The next step for the Wise Township applicant will be to obtain a license from the state. The state began accepting applications on Dec. 15 but has not issued a definite date for when it will begin approving licenses. In addition, two other people have obtained applications in Wise Township but have not yet returned them.

 

Not to be outdone by Isabella County, Gratiot County welcomed its first baby of 2018, on Jan. 3 as well...just a little later in the morning. Miguel Garcia was born on Wednesday at MidMichigan Medical Center - Gratiot in Alma….he was healthy, weighed five pounds, 15 ounces and was six days early.

Large jackpots in both the Megamillions and Powerball lottery games were won over the weekend...but not in MIchigan. One ticket won the $450 megamillions jackpot...the ticket was sold in FLA.A night after someone won the Mega Millions jackpot, a lone winning ticket was sold for the $559 million Powerball jackpot on Saturday... in New Hampshire. No one in MIchigan bought tickets that won more than $50,000 in either of the large jackpot wins over the weekend.

 

Friday, Jan. 5, 2018

As much of Michigan faced two nights in a row with wind chills so low they warranted advisories, forecasters say the middle of the state has not had temperatures even close to above freezing since at least Christmas Eve. The normal temperature in central michigan for this time of year is 29 degrees, though for 12 days, Mt. Pleasant and surrounding areas haven’t gotten close to that mark, hovering below 20 and for many days, around 10 with wind chills far below that. Most cities in Clare County at least have issued a “let it run” order until further notice, requiring residents to run a small stream of water constantly out of one faucet to prevent frozen pipes...and police are reminding everyone to stay inside and if you have to be outside, bundle up and takes lots of breaks... also check your carbon monoxide detectors...and never use your oven for supplemental heat.

A seat vacant on the Ithaca City Council was filled this week,  after members voted unanimously to place  James Andrew  on the board. Council member Kathy Timmons resigned Dec. 1 and community members applied for the open spot  by letter; Andrew is a 1992 Ithaca Grad and has worked for the gratiot sheriff’s office for 20 years. It’s the second seat on the council to be filled by appointment in 12 months after Trevor Paradise resigned earlier last year.

Two more Kmart stores in Michigan are set to close after another announcement from the company yesterday. The stores in Greenville and Richmond are now  on the list to shut down in april. That leave just 13 Kmarts left in Michigan, where the retail chain had its start. Mt. Pleasant’s Kmart is set to close this month.

This year’s flu shot contains a vaccine for a strain named just for the mitten state. It takes aim and three different types of flu, including what’s called the Michigan Strain...flu cases by the way tend to peak between December and February and there are some outbreaks right now, including at the Kinross prison in the UP...it’s so bad there visiting hours are canceled right now…. health official sy it’s not too late and are urging everyone to get the flu shot.

China's space agency notified the United Nations back in October that its Tiangong-1 space station would fall from space into Earth. Now we know the space station is expected to fall sometime in march and land between 43 degrees north and 43 degrees south, which is mostly covered in ocean and unpopulated areas….there is a 1 in 10,0000 chance it will come down in a populated area. A majority of the spacecraft is expected to burn up upon reentry into Earth's atmosphere, but some chunks weighing as much as 220 pounds could hit the surface.

A Mt. Pleasant church is taking on a new mental recovery program to help veterans and their families. New Life Church will be putting on a 12-week program based on Reboot Combat Recovery; the first class is Jan. 23. It is a faith-based program focuses on addressing struggles facing veterans, including depression,  suicide and substance abuse and uses a  nationwide course that provides methods for trauma healing.  You can read more about the program in the story on the morningsub.com

 

 

Thursday, January 4, 2018 -

Nine days early and with a full head of strikingly dark hair, Silas Alan Couling was born 55 minutes after his parents arrived at McLaren Central Michigan Wednesday morning. Silas greeted his parents —Michelle and Chris Couling— before the sun rose on Jan. 3, earning himself the honor of the first baby born in 2018 at the Mt. Pleasant hospital. Silas is the third child in the Couling family; he has two older sisters...one who is excited for his arrival and the other who asked to put him back, the coulings said. You can find a photo and more about the first baby of the new year in mid-michigan on themorningsun.com
 

A unique solution to Gratiot County’s lack of a building official may help it and other counties. The county has had little luck in hiring someone to fill the full-time position since it was vacated t in June; when advertised, zero qualified applications came in….there are only so many building insepctors to go around it seems, so commissioners voted this week to create a position that would work as a multi-county cooperative; two oter counties have express interst in sharing an insepctor, but first, the county has to find someone to fill the position, an opening now advertised.
 

A young couple from returned to their six lakes home late Tuesday night to find things in dissaray...as Cody Rockafellow searched the home he found footprints in the snow, then an armed intruder inside. Cody was armed himself andhe says he shot the intruder twice point-blank in the chest using a pistol. However, the intruder, who may have been wearing a bulletproof vest, ran to a waiting SUV and fled. The suspect is described as being about 6' 5" and 300 pounds, wearing all black, including a ski mask. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Lakeview state polie post, who cautioned that if you believe someone is in your home, make sure you have an excape plan, are safe, and call 911.
 

Like many homeowners in Isabella County, Angela and Simon Colby spent the second half of 2017 repairing and remodeling after June flooding wreaked havoc on homes across mid-Michigan. Nearly finished with recovery in the Mt. Pleasant house, the couple and their two young sons lost the home completely in a fire Monday, along with the family’s two pet cats, Angela’s photography business studio and countless personal items and irreplaceable mementos. The family is OK but they’ve lost everything; now a GoFundMe effort to raise cash, plus a cltohing and item drive is underway. YOu can find out how to donate and what’s needed in that story on themorningsun.com

A Shepherd business owner is hoping tips will help solve the theft of coins and cash last week that appears to have been committed by an experienced break-in artist. A thief caught on surveillance camera was dressed and prepared for the heist, the owners of Antiques and Uniques Marketplace said in seeking assistance on social media. The man was wearing a ski mask, gloves, and brought his own crow bar. Coins and cash were taken from the business...If you have information, contact the Shepherd police station.
 

Midland County sheriff's deputies are asking residents for information after two men attempted to lure a girl into a van Saturday in Edenville Township, between Coleman and MIdland. The girl, 9, was walking the short distance from a friend’s house to home when an older model black van, with a bumper sticker that said "I heart candy," pulled into a driveway. A man she did not know opened the door and asked the girl if she wanted a ride, and offered her candy.he was wearing all black, along with a ski mas as was a second person in the van.The girl ran back to her friend's home and told the adults there what had occurred. INcreased patrols and an active investigation has not turned suspects up yet; Anyone with information is asked to contact the midland county sheriff’s office.
 


Wednesday, Jan. 3, 2018

A sherman township woman will spend 9 months in jail after an Isabella County judge sentenced her Tuesday in the drunken driving crash that killed cyclist Michael seaman last summer. Abigail Kay Hebert pleaded guilty to operating while intoxicated causing death in November; her blood alcohol level was .093 when police investigated the accident on River Road near the Mt. Pleasant Country Club on a June evening. Investigators said sunlight low on the horizon likely also played  a factor in the car/bike crash that Killed seaman and that coupled with his father’s request that HEbert not face a long incarceration, motivated the lower-than recommended plea bargain sentence. HEbert will also serve five years of probation, you can get more in that story on themorningsun.com

A Montcalm County man who described himself as “a pretty simple guy” but retired immediately after winning was the state’s biggest lottery winner for 2017.  HE chose to remain anonymous after winning a $22.6 million jackpot playing the Lotto 47 game last February. The top 10 prizes for 2017 accounted for nearly $80 million in winnings for players.. No one, by the way, won last night's megamillions jackpot, which means it climbs to $418 million for Friday’s drawing while tonight's powerball drawing is $440 million.

Jill and Matt Irving have fostered more than a dozen children since 2010. While each child is different, nearly all of them had one thing in common when arriving at the Irving home: they came with their belongings stuffed into a garbage bag. Now the couple is hosting a tote, duffel bag and suitcase drive in Mt. Pleasant to make being a foster kid a little easier. If you have a new or gently used bg to donate, you can email the IRvings or drop it off at Motorless Motion in downtown mt. Pleasant. YOu can find Organized with Love’s mission statement and more on the effort’s facebook page and more info on themorningsun.com

At least two entrepreneurs are scoping out locations for medical marijuana business in Mt Pleasant as the city works toward creating local ordinances to manage different efforts like processing and distribution sites. St. Germain’s ANtique shop on MIssion in closing at the end of the month and one couple is eyeing the spot; there’s at least another person seeking to put a marijuana business on the edge of downtown Mt. Pleasant….commissioners are still working out details of the ordinance.

Police in Mt. Pleasant are looking for a man they say stole clothes from a dryer in an apartment complex. The sheriff shared a security camera photo of a suspect described as a 6-foot white man with a medium build and dark hair. He has a tattoo on the left side of his neck and may have been driving a white impala. Police say they believe he took the clothes on Dec. 27 from a dryer on Deerfield Road. IF you have information you can contact the Isabella County Sheriff’s office, and find a photo on the agency’s facebook page.

 

 

Tuesday, Jan. 2, 2018

As counties across Michigan wait to hear if proposals to bring parity between prosecutors and public defenders will be funded by the state, officials in Isabella County have voluntarily implemented a transitional position for 2018 to meet standards before they are a requirement. Beginning Jan. 1, the public defender system in the county will be an independently-run operation, rather than a process overseen by judges in the court system. The county has contracted with Sara Spencer-Noggle, who was already running the system before the new position was approved. While overseeing the independent public defender office, She will continue to find ways for the county to meet the standards set by the state regardless of funding. You can find more in that story on themorningsun.com

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