Three interviewed for Watervliet City Manager job; with no clear winner, Commissioners want to offer post to interim manager Bill Hodge
Candidate Daniel Antosik
By Annette Christie
Daniel Antosik was first of three candidates to interview for the Watervliet City Manager position at a special meeting Tuesday night. Antosik, from Adrian, is a recent Wayne State graduate with a master’s degree in public administration. He told the City Commissioners he had recently interned at the City of Royal Oak, a suburb of Detroit. He was also an intern for the Michigan Municipal League and also worked at a Ford Motor Truck Plant. What he lacked in experience, he told the Commission, he would make up with 100% work ethic and a willingness to learn. He readily admitted he had no budget background or finance experience but would learn the programs needed for the job. He listed his strengths as the ability to lead and work with people and resolve conflicts. He was sure the role of the manager was to attain goals set by the commission and report on the progress in meeting the goals. He said the most crucial aspect of the manager position was understanding the city finances, “the lifeblood of the organization.” When asked what he was looking for in the offered manager position, he said it was experience. “I’d like to gain experience and accuracy in city management. I would like to leave the community better than I found it.” He was asked if he had any grant writing experience. His answer was “no” and that he had not had any opportunity in school or the internships to work on grant writing. …
Territorial Road work still not done: detour will run to spring
LONG DETOUR… The “Road Closed” sign remains on Territorial Road in Millburg and will likely re-main there until spring. Funding and DEQ demands along with permitting issues have delayed the work of the Berrien County Road Commission for this culvert that collapsed into the creek below in April. School bus routes, customers of the local busi-nesses, and local residents alike con-tinue to be affected by this detour. (TCR photo by Annette Christie)
By Annette Christie
Road closure signs still block off Territorial Road in Bainbridge Township and will likely remain that way into the spring of 2017. It was in early April that Territorial was closed east of Millburg due to a culvert and road collapse. Traffic is being detoured onto North Branch and Park roads. Early reports were that it could take several months for the replacement to be completed on the over 70 year-old culvert that goes over Blue Creek. It is now looking like it will be over a year before it is final. The Road Commission tried to replace it 12 years ago but could not obtain the necessary permit from the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) which wanted a full bridge put in its place. The DEQ is requiring that the 42” diameter culvert must be replaced with a 7’ by 12’ concrete box culvert. The Road Commission has now acquired federal funds for the culvert replacement. However, with the project being completed with federal funds, the Michigan Department of Transportation now has the oversight. The plans are completed and are currently in Lansing awaiting their review. When they are finished with their review, they will advertise the project for approximately six weeks and then accept bids. Kevin Eyerly with the Berrien County Road Commission said they are anticipating a January bid date. “If all the pieces fall into place correctly, we have a completion date of May 26, 2017,” Eyerly said. Locals in Millburg are noticing a difference in business and traffic with the detour that some say is taking way too long. Holly Bradford who works at the Millburg Trading Post said absolutely, the detour has affected the store’s business. “Especially the summer months, it was really down,” Bradford said. …
Watervliet County Park $300,000 grant application receives good score
By Annette Christie
The Berrien County Parks Department has received good news about their $300,000 grant application for Watervliet County Park. While the official decision for the grant award has not been made, it is now known that the score the county received for the grant was considerably higher than a year ago with their first attempt. Berrien County has developed a park master plan for 52 acres in all of water-front property in the City of Watervliet that was acquired through its Brownfield Authority. The Phase 1 improvements include the park becoming a trail head for the Paw Paw River Water Trail with a kayaking and canoe launch, parking area, barrier free hard surface trails, a bridge to the island, fishing and viewing decks, landscaping and signage. The total project is estimated at $600,000. …
Paw Paw River clean up continues
By Annette Christie
The continuation of the Paw Paw River clean-up is keeping organizers busy. Rick Rasmussen with the Friends of the Paw Paw River recently spoke at a City Commission meeting about the progress. Rasmussen said that with $7,000 that was raised privately, a company was brought in to work on the area of the Paw Paw River between Watervliet and Coloma. He said the company worked for four days at $1,500 a day. “They were worth every penny,” Rasmussen said. He added, “We are not aware of anyone doing this professionally.” The company worked on opening, clearing, and removing logs and debris from various areas in the river. “We were able to open nine sites from Watervliet to Coloma,” Rasmussen said.
COLOMA HS MARCHING BAND… placed 1st in Class C at the Grand Haven Marching Invitational on September 24, and earned additional awards for Best Color Guard, Music, and Marching. On October 1, the band competed at the Hastings Marching Invitational and placed 3rd in Class C. Upcoming performances include half-time at the Coloma home football games on October 7 & 21 and MSBOA District 6 Marching Band Festival at Paw Paw Middle School stadium on Octo-ber 12 at 6 p.m. The 98 member Comet Marching Band is directed by Cheryl Thoas, assisted by Christopher Keech, the Color Guard Instructor is Kelsey Boven, and the Percussion Instructor is Marc Churchill.
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