06-14-2018 Coloma City property taxes for 2018 will increase by Headlee allowable amount; Farewell 

Coloma City property taxes for 2018 will increase by Headlee allowable amount

By Lynn Mainwaring-Attila Coloma city property owners will have a slight increase in their taxes for 2018 according to action taken by the Coloma City Commission at its regular meeting held Tuesday, May 29. Morphing into public meeting mode, the commission received no comments from the assembled. They then agreed to take advantage of the Headlee Amendment and levy a slight increase in property taxes for 2018. The Commission approved an increase of 0.2939 mills to its operating millage. This will bring the amount collected for operation back up to 16.5349 mills. Mayor Jim Polashak pointed out this was the maximum allowed by the Headlee. The 1.73 percent tax increase will raise $9,808, split up over about 800 properties. The year’s operating revenue would have decreased by 3.53 percent over last year’s operating revenue if not increased. Commissioner Jason Hicks cast the lone nay vote for the slight increase. He commented, “Just for the record, I think it’s ludicrous the State dictates how we raise taxes.” Seeking Beauty An agreement was made for the city to join forces with the Downtown Development Authority for the purpose of grant writing. The unanimous vote allows Commissioner Marsha Hammond to become a part-time project coordinator. She will help apply for grants and organize beautification projects. She will be a contract employee and work a limited amount of hours for one calendar year. The DDA will pay her $5 per hour and the city will pay her $15 per hour. “Ticked” about tall grass Commissioner Hammond announced the city would be taking a “hard line approach” this year when it comes to yard maintenance and lawn mowing. She pointed out the unusually heavy tick population has prompted concern. “We’re taking a stand” she emphasized. Current ordinance requires grass to be no higher than six inches. When a yard goes beyond this requirement, the property owner will be tagged. If prompt action is not taken, the city will mow the grass and the property owner will be assessed $200. Other business Commissioners agreed to allow Chemical Bank to install a handicap accessible ramp to its entrance. Hammond pointed out the ramp would consume sidewalk space; however, there will still be room for everyone to get by. The commission agreed to pay the monthly bills. The commission is still seeking a part-time ordinance officer. The recent agreement with Coloma Township did not work out. The purposed position would be part-time, contracted with no benefits.

Farewell  celebration for Michael Zehner June 23

On Saturday, June 23 the VFW Post 1137 in Watervliet is hosting a farewell celebration for Watervliet resident, Michael Zehner. The public is invited to attend and wish Michael farewell as he moves from his hometown of Watervliet. He will be moving to Texas to be near his sister. Last year he had the honor of being the Grand Marshal of the Watervliet Grand Parade during the Independence Weekend Celebration. Michael has an infectious laugh and a bright smile. He makes others feel better about themselves just by being in the same room with him. Michael will be missed. The farewell will take place from 2 to 4 p.m. at the post located at 8777 Red Arrow Hwy. in Watervliet

Watervliet Pharmacy opens doors with Pharmacist “Dr. Rama”

By Lynn Mainwaring-Attila The highly anticipated Watervliet Pharmacy opened its doors Tuesday, May 29. Former Coloma Rite Aid pharmacist Ramakrishna “Rama” Reddy Burramukka has come onboard as the head of a professional and caring staff. Watervliet has been without a pharmacy for more than four years.

Dr. Rama hails from India, a graduate from the College of Pharmacy in Manipal, India. He also earned a Masters of Business (Operations Management) degree in Australia in 2001 and served the community of Coloma for 13 years, as a pharmacist. According to Alona Hayden, publicity manager, Dr. Rama was inspired to become a pharmacist by Dr. Anji Reddy, founder of Dr. Reddy’s Pharma of India. Reddy is a world leader and supplier of affordable generic medicines. Dr. Reddy’s mentor is Mother Teresa. She was born in Macedonia, dedicated her life ministering to the destitute and dying in the slums of Calcutta India as a nun, and was later proclaimed a Saint by the Catholic Church. She once said, “Every time you smile at someone, it is an action of love, a gift to that person, a beautiful thing.” Dr. Rama enjoys serving the public as a pharmacist, “I enjoy taking care of people with their medication questions and improve their quality of living. Being a pharmacist, I can make a difference in the community. My biggest challenge is to bring effective pharmacy care and cost effective services to everybody who lives in the community.” After serving the community for more than a decade, Dr. Rama has gotten to know many local residents and their healthcare needs. “Being a community pharmacist, I enjoy helping patients find cost effective solutions and ass