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My Town: Congressional candidates to hold public forums

My Town: Congressional candidates to hold public forums

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—Two men running to represent West Michigan in Congress have agreed to hold public forums.

Congressman Justin Amash and his Democratic contender, businessman Bob Goodrich met over coffee in Eastown Aug. 15.  During the brief meeting, both candidates discussed ideas on how best to keep the race for the 3rd Congressional seat civil.

Amash beat East Grand Rapids businessman Brian Ellis by roughly a 14-percent margin during August’s primary. Voters will decide if Amash will continue to represent them during the general election Nov. 4.  The Third Congressional District of Michigan includes the areas of  Grand Rapids, Cascade Township, Alpine Township, East Grand Rapids, Belding, Lowell, Plainfield Township, Rockford and Sparta.

Inside the August Primary: The close calls and votes cast

Inside the August Primary: The close calls and votes cast

LANSING, Mich.-- Fewer voters cast their ballots Tuesday than when Governor Rick Snyder was elected.

That's according to Fred Woodhams, spokesman for the Secretary of State's Office.  Woodhams says 1.3 million Michiganders visited the polls during the primary, accounting for approximately 20.3 percent of active voters. Active voters are defined by the Secretary of State as people who have voted within the last six years. Woodhams says approximately 17.9 percent of registered Michigan voters cast a ballot Tuesday, but that number may be skewed because people who have moved out of the state may still be registered to vote in Michigan.

My Town: Voters to decide key issues during Aug. 5 election

My Town: Voters to decide key issues during Aug. 5 election

Voters across West Michigan are expected to head to the polls Tuesday, Aug. 5 to decide some key issues and races.

Proposal 1 would alter Michigan’s tax infrastructure by eliminating equipment taxes for businesses that already pay taxes every year.  A portion of sales tax revenue that goes to the state treasury would be reallocated to local governments to cover the tax revenue loss.  Plainfield Township Superintendent Cameron Van Wyngarden says the ballot measure would make Michigan more economically competitive with other states.

Senator Jansen decides against congressional run

Senator Jansen decides against congressional run

KENT COUNTY, Mich.—  Republican Senator Mark Jansen says he will not join the race for Congressman Justin Amash’s seat next year.

“I have decided at this time my focus will continue to help Michigan find the road to recovery, from Grand Rapids to Detroit to the Upper Peninsula to our lake shores,” Jansen said. ”Right now I really feel the call to continue helping Michigan’s recovery as my Senate term ends in 13 short months.”

Jansen says he has been “strongly encouraged” to run for the 3rd Congressional District seat for the past two years.  He believes people want the same level of reform achieved in Michigan to happen in Washington.

Jansen represents the northern portion of Kent County.  The U.S. 3rd Congressional District includes Belding, Rockford, Lowell, East Grand Rapids, Walker, Ada and Cascade, Alpine Township, Sparta, Plainfield Township and all of Grand Rapids.

State legislators meet with local officials

State legislators meet with local officials

ALPINE TOWNSHIP, Mich.-- State Representatives Rob VerHeulen and Pete McGregor met with township, city and public safety officials Tuesday morning to receive public input on recently proposed state legislation that would increase or establish new fees for the licensing of emergency medical services operations and education providers.

Funding a trip to the U.S. Capitol with phone books

Funding a trip to the U.S. Capitol with phone books

COMSTOCK PARK, Mich.-- Used phone books will pave the way to Washington D.C. for students of Kenowa Hills Middle School.

Phone book and newsprint donations can be dropped off at the trailer in the Sam’s Club gas station parking lot, located on Alpine Avenue NW behind Applebee’s.

Proceeds from the paper trailer will be used to cover administrative costs and essentials for the seventh and eight graders’ trip, which will take place in November 2014.  

No Place like Home in Alpine Township's Blog

No Place like Home in Alpine Township's Blog

In February of 2009 the Alpine Township Blog was launched and the first article to appear was titled "No Place Like Home", a story about Alpine Township artist Sheryl Budnik and her paintings of scenery around the "Apple Ridge" http://alpinetwp.blogspot.com/2009_02_01_archive.html  Sheryl's artwork was featured at the Keeler Gallery at Fountain Street Church and after the exhibition Sheryl allowed some of her work to be displayed at Alpine Township Hall. 

More than 4 years have passed, Alpine Township still has its blog, and Sheryl Budnik is still painting.  This month, her work has been on display at the Terryberry Gallery at the St. Cecelia Music Center.  Sheryl's interests have expanded from scenes from the Ridge  to water and Lake Michigan.