40 protesters left peacefully from the Ice Mountain Bottling Plant in Stanwood Monday afternoon following a call to police.
According to the Mecosta Co. Sheriff's Office, deputies arrived on scene and were met by multiple protesters exiting the lobby entrance.
Protesters were there to speak with Ice Mountain regarding the permit to pump more water in Osceola County as well as the Flint water crisis.
Deputies also spoke with plant personnel and were advised that no protesters made it past the lobby.
There was no property damage and no assaultive behavior was reported.
After speaking with both side of the issue, the protesters agreed to leave the property and they left without incident.
Officials at the Big Rapids Public School District is welcoming any local voter who has questions and wants to learn more about the operating millage renewal and bond proposal on the May election ballot.
The event, to be held on Tuesday, at Artworks in downtown Big Rapids at 6:30pm is aimed to provide voters with information and answer questions.
Officials will be on hand to answer any questions attendees may have about the operating millage renewal that will allow BRPS to collect funds for teachers, staff, textbooks and classroom supplies.
BRPS will also be asking residents to approve a 2.35 mill bond proposal ($2.35 for every $1,000 of taxable value).
If approved, this bond will be used only for building renovations/upgrades/ technology upgrades around the Big Rapids Public Schools District.
Bond was set at $150,000 for a Big Rapids man arraigned on drug charges.
34-year old Kenneth Leroy Rowley III is charged with one count of delivery of methamphetamine and one count of possession of meth.
The charges stem from an investigation by the Big Rapids Department of Public Safety following an alleged incident in Big Rapids between April 10th and 13th.
Rowley III could face up to 40 years in prison, if convicted.
The Big Rapids Department of Public Safety is looking for a missing woman and needs your help.
According to police, 27-year old Crystal Lousie Hawn was reported missing last Tuesday by her family.
Hawn is described as a white female, 5 feet 2 inches tall, 150 pounds with brown hair and brown eyes.
If you have seen Crystal, please call the Big Rapids Department of Public Safety at 231-527-0005.
A 34-year old Big Rapids man was arrested Friday on a number of charges following an alleged domestic incident.
Police in Big Rapids say they were sent to a home on the 1100 block of Catherine Street for a domestic complaint involving a handgun.
Officers were able to locate the suspect leaving the scene.
After conducting a traffic stop, officers were able to locate the gun inside the car.
It was also learned by officers the Big Rapids man was under the influence of alcohol.
The suspect's name is being withheld pending arraignment.
A Baldwin woman is dead after she was hit by a car in Lake County.
Deputies were called to the accident on U.S. 10 near Hawkins Road in Chase Township around 3:15 Saturday morning.
When police arrived, they found 32-year-old Christina Lynn Kunna dead at the scene.
A preliminary investigation revealed, Kunna was walking in the lane of traffic on US-10 when she was truck by a car being operated by a Evart man.
The accident remains under investigation.
The Mecosta County Road Commission will be lifting its seasonal weight restrictions on all county roads starting on Wednesday at 6am.
Weight restrictions only affect semi-trucks and some farming equipment.
For more information, contact the Mecosta County Road Commission at (231) 796-2611.
The Ferris State University Student Government Association, organizers of The BIG Event, have been closely monitoring anticipated poor weather conditions forecasted for Saturday, April 14. Student organizers, in close communication with the Ferris administration, have made the difficult decision to cancel The BIG Event due to anticipated rainy, icy and cold weather.
As a result of the 2018 cancellation, organizers of The BIG Event plan to reach out to all community members who signed up to have their properties served by Ferris students.
“We’re obviously very disappointed to have to cancel The BIG Event. We want to ensure everyone this difficult decision was made after careful consideration and considerable conversation,” said Bryanna Harlan, the 2018 director of The BIG Event. “We truly understand the importance of The BIG Event, in the Big Rapids community, and what it means to our students, faculty, staff and other volunteers who have made this the major community-service project it has become. The health and safety of our students is important. That safety factor played a major role in making the decision to cancel as we looked at the unfavorable weather conditions headed our way.”
Due to scheduling conflicts and other prior commitments, no makeup date will be scheduled for 2018. However, The BIG Event, the largest, student-run community service project in the state of Michigan, is expected to return in Spring 2019.
“We’re committed to returning The BIG Event, next year's date is already scheduled for April 13, 2019 and we know students will be excited to participate in this great tradition of giving back, to the Big Rapids community, through volunteer service,” said Bobby Gill, the 2018-19 Student Government Association president. Previously, The BIG Event was postponed, in 2013, due to poor weather conditions. Anyone with questions or concerns can contact the Student Government office at (231) 591-2611 or visit The Big Event – Ferris State University Facebook page.
A man, who was allegedly looking at child porn on computers in a Walmart in Mount Pleasant, is being held on $50,000 bond.
Isabella County Sheriff Michael Main says employees at the Walmart noticed Timothy Powers on their demo computers for long periods of time over several days.
When they checked the browser history , they found several child pornography websites.
Powers is a registered sex offender.
Walmart is reportedly looking into how this happened, saying they have controls in place to prevent this from happening.
102nd District State House Representative Michele Hoitenga says she's disappointed with one committee's recommendation that would levy a fee on canoe, kayak and paddle board owners in the state.
Under a recent proposal by the Michigan State Waterways Commission it require all kayaks, canoes and paddle boards to be registered with the state.
Hoitenga, said people should not be penalized for supporting Michigan’s tourism industry and enjoying the state’s natural resources.
Under the proposal, each watercraft would be charged a $10 fee for registration.
Many paddle enthusiasts believe the fee is especially unfair to those who own several kayaks, canoes or paddle boards.
A hearing for a Central Michigan University student accused of murdering his parents in a dorm room has been postponed.
James Davis Jr. is undergoing treatment after he was found incompetent to stand trial.
Investigators say the 19-year old took his father's gun from the car and shot James and Diva Davis in early March inside of Campbell Hall.
Davis' attorney says the 19-year old man is undergoing treatment in an attempt to have him regain competency.
No date for a competency review has been scheduled.
Icy road conditions Tuesday caused two car accidents in Mecosta County.
The first happened on southbound US-131 near 14 Mile Rd, deputies say a 20-year old female driver lost control on the road and struck several small trees.
She was taken to a local hospital for non-life threatening injuries.
The second accident occurred on 15 Mile Rd near 165th Avenue.
Police say a 35-year old woman from Illinois was traveling westbound on 15 Mile Rd.
When she lost control of her car went off the road and struck a tree.
She was taken to Spectrum Health Big Rapids Hospital for non-life threatening injuries.
A mid-Michigan Sheriff will not face criminal charges after leaving his gun in a school locker room.
The Mecosta County prosecutor's office determined Isabella County Sheriff Michael Main broke no laws when he left his backup gun at Shepard Middle School in March.
A student found the weapon and told a teacher.
Main apologized saying he was devastated with his lack of accountability.
Main used the locker room to change from street clothes into uniform and thought he put the gun back in his bag.
Nestle Waters North American Incorporated has gotten the okay to pump more groundwater for its Ice Mountain brand.
Before, the company was permitted to withdraw 250 gallons a minute from an underground aquifer in Osceola County. Under the new plan, Nestle can increase that amount to 400 gallons per minute.
According to a press release, MDEQ President Heidi Grether said the review was a huge undertaking.
“The scope and detail of the department’s review of the Nestlé permit application represents the most extensive analysis of any water withdrawal in Michigan history,” said C. Heidi Grether, director of MDEQ. “We are hopeful that whether residents agree with the Nestlé permitting decision or not, they will acknowledge and respect the work that MDEQ staff did to thoroughly and conscientiously apply the law in reviewing the permit.”
Nestle now has to prepare a monitoring plan. There is public outrage generated by the fact Nestle gets the groundwater for nothing more than a 200-dollar per year permit.
“In full transparency, the majority of the public comments received were in opposition of the permit, but most of them related to issues of public policy which are not, and should not be, part of an administrative permit decision. We cannot base our decisions on public opinion because our department is required to follow the rule of law when making determinations,” Grether added.
The plan is tied up in the courts.
Osceola Township has appealed an earlier decision that would allow Nestle to build a new pumping station despite it being zoned agricultural.
Michigan's mandatory fee to cover unlimited medical benefits for injured drivers is going up to $192 a year, an increase of $22 over the current annual fee per insured vehicle.
The Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association announcing the 13% increase, which follows a 6.3% increase in 2017.
The fee revenue largely covers care for people with brain, spinal cord, back and neck injuries.
Officials say the fee hike is due to higher-than-expected claims, partially offset by better-than-expected investment returns.
A Newaygo man accused of breaking into his ex-wife's Osceola County home and making threats to her and himself then being involved in a standoff with police has been arraigned.
54-year old Jeffery Christensen was charged with one count of first degree home invasion.
The incident happened on Sunday when police got a call from a woman who said her ex-husband had broken in with a handgun and was making threats.
According to the Osceola County Sheriff's Office additional charges against Christensen are possible pending current investigation.
His bond was set at $200,000.
A standoff in Osceola County on Sunday ended peacefully.
The Osceola County Sheriff's Office received a call about a home invasion in progress at a residence on 12 Mile Rd. Between 230th Ave and Lakeola Rd.
Under sheriff Justin Halladay said the caller stated her ex-husband came into her home unannounced and unwelcome. The caller stated the man had a gun and was making threats to her and himself.
The woman was able to escape and go to a neighbor's home to call 911.
Halladay said contact was then made by police with the suspect.
The suspect was threatening to kill himself and any officer's responding.
Using a combination of loud speaker commands and a flash bang outside of the home, officers were able to coax the suspect out.
He was taken into custody without incident.
The suspect has been charged with home invasion and felonious assault.
Photo credit: Colliers International | West Michigan
Two new tenants will fill the former K-Mart building located in Ferris Commons, the retail strip at 1250 Perry Ave. in Big Rapids. Colliers International | West Michigan announced that JoAnn Fabric will occupy 15,000 square feet and Grand Rapids-based CareLinc Medical will occupy the balance of the former big box anchor after signing a lease for 10,000 square feet in March.
“Big Rapids continues to attract major retailers that see the value and potential of the Ferris Commons location. As the interest in the Ferris Commons location increases, so does the attraction to Big Rapids for regional and national retailers, such as CareLinc Medical and JoAnn Fabric,” said Mark Ansara, Colliers International | West Michigan Associate Vice President. “Ferris State University is a major draw, as well as the convenience of US-131 just east of the location, so the right tenant mix for the former K-Mart building noticed the benefits of this location.”
The 80,000-square-foot anchor space was previously occupied by K-Mart, but now holds Family Farm and Home, Planet Fitness and its newest tenants, JoAnn Fabric and CareLinc Medical. Splitting these former big box stores into multiple suites follows a national retail trend and creatively reuses these large buildings. The adjacent strip center also includes Peebles, Dollar Tree, Goodwill, Buffalo Wild Wings and AT&T.
“We are thrilled to see that the former K-Mart building is now filled with strong businesses, including JoAnn Fabric and CareLinc,” said Jennifer Heinzman, Mecosta County Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director. “We have received a number of requests from the community for JoAnn Fabric over recent yeas, so we are confident the store will thrive in Big Rapids. We are grateful for the JoAnn Fabric investment in Mecosta County.”
JoAnn Fabric and CareLinc are both great complements the other existing tenants and accomplishes the growth in retail offerings within the space.
As many as 40 apartment tenants are looking for a new home following a apartment complex fire Sunday morning in Reed City.
Reed City Fire Chief Jeff Stein said they got the call about the blaze at Crossroads Apartments just before 6am, Sunday morning.
No injuries were reported and everyone made it out safely.
Stein says residents were taken to the R.C. Fire Department where further arraignments were made with officials from the American Red Cross.
The cause of the fire is still being investigated by Michigan State Police and the Reed City Police Department.
Michigan Governor Rick Snyder has signed legislation to boost spending on roads and bridges.
The $175 million increase is 7 percent above existing spending.
The move comes as motorists throughout the state continue to deal with horrendous road conditions and vehicle-damaging potholes.
Republican State Rep. Michele Hoitenga of Manton said today, an investment coming without higher taxes or fees.
“Improving the condition of our roads is one of my top priorities, because it is one of the top priorities of just about everyone I talk to from all of our communities,” Hoitenga said after a plan she supported was signed into law. “Too many of our roads are in bad shape and in desperate need of an upgrade. This money doesn’t solve all of our problems, but it most definitely helps – especially after this rough winter and all the potholes it caused.”
Much of the money is headed directly to counties, cities and villages for road preservation and construction. The money is left over from a previous budget cycle by various state departments, meaning no budget cuts or additional fees or taxes are required for the investment.
The road agency for Mecosta County will receive just over $455,000 in funding beyond what was previously planned. In addition, cities and villages within the county will get extra funding estimated as follows: Big Rapids ($70,522.49), Barryton ($3,096.25), Mecosta ($4,937.16), Morley ($4,983.62) and Stanwood ($1,995.56).
Wexford County’s road agency will receive just under $420,000. Cities and villages within the county will get more money on top of that allocation including Buckley ($7,280.65), Cadillac ($82,292.32), Harrietta ($2,882.69), Manton ($11,432.26) and Mesick ($5,076.31). Amounts are estimates.
Osceola County will receive just under $345,000, with Reed City getting an estimated $20,092.52, LeRoy getting an estimated $4,980.13 and Tustin receiving an estimated $2,880.68.
The extra money comes in addition to record-level road funding provided by previous long-term reforms. The state also has strengthened its warranty system designed to make sure new and refurbished roads will last longer.