10-20-2016 County seeks Supreme Court appeal to keep gun range open; Watervliet held second intervie

ALL HAIL SAC CONFERENCE SOCCER CHAMPIONS!… The Hartford Indians varsity soccer team was named the Southwestern Athletic Conference champions after leading the SAC conference with a 12-0 record this season. Team members include Riley Traver, Jake Griffith, Rudy Martinez, Austin Nelson, Roy Rodriguez, Miguel Cardoso, Brandon Galvan, Herik Garcia, Jiovani Calderon, Joel Soto, Chris Ramon, Michel Calderon, William Martinez, Fernando Alvarez, Daniel Soto, Ulises Bacilio, Danny Resendez, Noel Soto, Israel Ugalde, Eriberto Barboza, Josh Moore, Zach Hays, Isai Ordonez, Alex Garcia, Nick Garcia, Irvin Zavala, Ismael Reyes, Jerry Mendoza, Nick Pultz, Victor Hurtado, Jahdiel Mendez, and Leonard Helmer. The squad is led by head coach Nick Blackmer and assistant coaches Abel Robles and Angel Mejia.

ALL HAIL SAC CONFERENCE SOCCER CHAMPIONS!… The Hartford Indians varsity soccer team was named the Southwestern Athletic Conference champions after leading the SAC conference with a 12-0 record this season. Team members include Riley Traver, Jake Griffith, Rudy Martinez, Austin Nelson, Roy Rodriguez, Miguel Cardoso, Brandon Galvan, Herik Garcia, Jiovani Calderon, Joel Soto, Chris Ramon, Michel Calderon, William Martinez, Fernando Alvarez, Daniel Soto, Ulises Bacilio, Danny Resendez, Noel Soto, Israel Ugalde, Eriberto Barboza, Josh Moore, Zach Hays, Isai Ordonez, Alex Garcia, Nick Garcia, Irvin Zavala, Ismael Reyes, Jerry Mendoza, Nick Pultz, Victor Hurtado, Jahdiel Mendez, and Leonard Helmer. The squad is led by head coach Nick Blackmer and assistant coaches Abel Robles and Angel Mejia.


County seeks Supreme Court appeal to keep gun range open; Coloma Township gives attorney okay to continue legal battle

By Annette Christie

At last month’s Coloma Township Board meeting, their Attorney Scott Dienes informed them of the recent Michigan Court of Appeals ruling regarding the ongoing battle with Berrien County over the use of a training facility/shooting range located on Angling Road in the township.  Dienes said that he was pleased to announce that the township won the litigation against the county.  He said the case was actually argued before the Court of Appeals in December of last year and they have been waiting for the ruling for a long time.  The ruling came in with two in favor and one dissenting.   At that same meeting, Dienes told the board he predicted that even though success would be slim the County would file an appeal because there was a dissenting opinion written. Dienes confirmed that the County has in fact now filed a leave with the Supreme Court which basically asks the court for permission to have the case heard. Dienes said that the Court grants leave to less than 5%.  Dienes asked the board for their permission to move forward to respond to the County’s action. Trustee Matt Moser asked Dienes if he could give any estimate on how much this will cost the township and Dienes replied that it would be hard to peg, “I’m not gonna let you pin me down on that,” Dienes said.  He added that he was not trying to be cagey, but rather that he had just got it today.  The board unanimously approved for Dienes to respond to the continued legal battle.   The township’s auditing firm reported to the board that their audit is completed and all of their financials are in good order.  They received the highest opinion that their auditor can render.    The board approved bills in the amount of $193,425.60 which included $84,278.37 in payroll.  Trustee Jim Fulton said that the Planning Commission continues to update the Zoning Ordinance.  Those updates have been turned into the attorney for their review before the Planning Commission makes the final changes.  Police Chief Jason Roe presented the department’s 2016 Protocol manual for their review and approval.  Roe also asked the board for a three-year contract for Lt. Wes Smielgelski.   Roe said that his contract expired October 1.  The previous one was for only one year.  Roe said that the contract language is the same with the exception of a 1.7% raise, “To catch him up more than anything,” Roe said.  Trustee Rob Harper stated that the North Berrien Fire Dept. responded to 21 calls in September: seven in Hagar Township, two in the city of Coloma, 11 in Coloma Township and one on I-94.  Harper said the Fire Board approved a new tanker truck. Coloma Township’s portion is $46,595.22. Harper said that the township could save $3,000 if they pay for it when it is ordered.  Harper noted that they had $333,482 in the fire truck account with $245,922 remaining after paying off the last vehicle. The board approved paying for their portion at the time of the order to save money.  Supervisor Ken Parrigin said that they are putting a committee together to formulate the job description and posting, review the applications, and perform the interviews for the new North Berrien Fire Chief that is being hired full time.  Parrigin added township resident Bob Hall to that committee.

Watervliet held second interview with one Manager candidate; he says he may have better offer in a few weeks