Local News Archives

New Residential Development Coming To Harbor Shores

Coming soon to Harbor Shores will be a new residential development. On Friday, Harbor Village was announced. It’ll be a 78 home neighborhood right next to the Inn at Harbor Shores, at the confluence of the Paw Paw and St. Joseph Rivers, featuring town homes, row homes, and single family homes. Harbor Shores Real Estate Director Kerry Wright tells WSJM News the neighborhood will have several amenities.... [Read Full Story]

Police Agencies Look To Create Trust, Understanding With Public

Police departments in southwest Michigan are hoping to build a sense of trust and mutual understanding with citizens. That’s why a forum organized by Advocates And Leaders For Police And Community Trust — or, ALPACT — was held Thursday night in Benton Harbor. Retired Michigan State Police Captain Harold Love gave a presentation on the long-term stresses police officers face.... [Read Full Story]

Michigan Sees Drop In Homelessness

Homelessness is in the spotlight this week, as groups across Michigan work to find ways of preventing it, and the latest data is showing recent efforts have made a difference. Eric Hufnagel, Director of the Michigan Coalition Against Homelessness, tells WSJM News homelessness in the state went down 6% last year. Part of the reason is new tools to help assess each person seeking help.... [Read Full Story]

LMC Gets $1.6 Million Grant For Its Educational Opportunity Center

A program at Lake Michigan College that helps students from disadvantaged backgrounds pursue a higher education has been funded for another five years. The U.S. Department of Education this week awarded LMC $1.6 million to maintain its Educational Opportunity Center through 2021. LMC has run the Educational Opportunity Center since 1994, and since then, it’s served more than 25,000 students. The EOC is a free community resource hub that connects disadvantaged students with services that could help them earn a degree. It guides them through the admissions process at any college, connects them with tutors, and gives them access to computers, among other things. LMC is one of 143 colleges and organizations nationwide to get a grant to continue such a program.... [Read Full Story]

UPDATE: Two Illinois Men Killed In I-94 Crash Near New Buffalo

Two people are dead following a crash on I-94 near New Buffalo Saturday morning. The Berrien County Sheriff’s Department tells WSJM News it happened in the westbound lanes near mile marker 2 about 10 a.m. A vehicle with two 20-year-old men from Illinois lost control and slid under a semi that was parked on the shoulder. The two men were killed. The crash caused I-94 near New Buffalo to be shut down for several hours. The sheriff’s department accident reconstruction team is still investigating.... [Read Full Story]

Stuff A Truck Food Drive Sets New Record

97-5 Y Country radio has set a new record with its latest Stuff a Truck food drive. Volunteers and staff this past week managed to fill a 23-foot truck 12 times with food for the Southwest Michigan Community Action Agency. That’s more than they’ve ever collected before. The staff and volunteers stationed themselves at Roger’s Foodland in St. Joseph for the week, taking donations from shoppers and others. In addition to all of the food they collected, they raised nearly $10,000. The donations help the community action agency keep people fed through the winter. Y Country thanks everyone who helped support the 20th annual drive.... [Read Full Story]

Hundreds Come Out For Kids Christmas Carnival

The Christmas season is here, and a special party was held Saturday at LMC’s Mendel Center to celebrate. The 6th annual Kids Christmas Carnival, partly sponsored by Mid-West Family Broadcasting, featured bounce houses, pictures with Santa, cookie decorating, and much more. Mid-West Family’s Lindsay Zvonar told us the event was a huge success.... [Read Full Story]

Two Dead In I-94 Crash Near New Buffalo

Two people are dead following a crash on I-94 near New Buffalo Saturday morning. The Berrien County Sheriff’s Department tells WSJM News it happened in the westbound lanes near mile marker 2 about 10 a.m. A car crashed into a semi, going underneath it. Both fatalities were in the car. The crash caused westbound I-94 near New Buffalo to be shut down for several hours. Sheriff’s department accident reconstructionists were brought in to further investigate, and the new Buffalo Township Fire Department assisted at the scene.... [Read Full Story]

Upton Holding “Holidays For Heroes” Card Drive

It’s time once again to help make the holidays a little better for the military. Congressman Fred Upton’s office is holding yet another Holidays for Heroes greeting card collection drive. Between now and December 2, anyone can send or drop off a holiday card at Upton’s offices in St. Joseph or Kalamazoo, and they’ll make sure it gets to a soldier. Schools around the Sixth District have also been invited to make cards. The Red Cross, which will deliver the cards, asks that they not have any glitter or other objects attached, and it also asks that senders don’t write their full names on them. You can find out more about Holidays for Heroes here.... [Read Full Story]

$125,000 Raised For Lakeland Pavilion

$125,000 has been raised to help pay for Lakeland Medical Center’s new pavilion, thanks to a celebration held recently at Lake Michigan College’s Mendel Center. The annual Lakeland Gala raised the highest amount to date, as supporters took part in a raffle, a silent auction, and made donations. The New York-themed event also included live music, dancing, and fine dining. Lakeland is planning a $160 million pavilion for its facility on Napier Avenue in St. Joseph. Set for completion in 2020, the pavilion will feature medical and surgical suites, a short stay unit, imaging centers, an intensive care unit, and education and community rooms. The 260,000 square foot addition will also mean a new entrance to the hospital.... [Read Full Story]

Charges Dropped Against Former MI Lawmaker

A judge has dismissed a misconduct charge against a former Michigan state lawmaker who quit office amid a sex scandal last year. Republican Todd Courser still faces a perjury charge in the case in Ingham County Circuit Court. The Detroit News reports that Judge William Collette dismissed the misconduct in office charge Thursday. MLive.com reports that Courser’s attorney, Matthew DePerno, argued that there was no criminal element to the charge related to an alleged violation of a state House rule.The attorney general’s office plans to proceed with the perjury charge and a misconduct charge in Lapeer County. Courser resigned before lawmakers voted to expel fellow GOP Representative Cindy Gamrat.
He’s accused of soliciting an aide to send a phony email to cover up an affair with Gamrat. Charges against Gamrat have been dismissed.... [Read Full Story]

New Neighborhood Planned For Harbor Shores

There’s a new development coming to Harbor Shores. Director of Real Estate Kerry Wright tells WSJM News they’re planning a new neighborhood. Work should begin in the next year on Harbor Village, which will be at the confluence of the St. Joe and Paw Paw Rivers. Wright says they’ve got big plans for the property next to the Inn at Harbor Shores.... [Read Full Story]

Researchers Predict Continued MI Job Growth

University of Michigan economists say the state’s economy will continue its post-recession recovery with continuing job growth for the next two years. George Fulton and colleagues Gabriel Ehrlich, Donald Grimes and Michael McWilliams on Friday issued an annual November forecast of Michigan’s economy. They say the state will add an average of 45,800 jobs per year in 2017 and 2018. That rate, however, is slowing from an average pace of roughly 70,000 jobs per year from 2014 to 2016. In all, Michigan will have gained more than 605,700 jobs during the economic
recovery from summer 2009 through the end of 2018. Overall, they say Michigan’s economic recovery will help the state’s unemployment rate hold steady around 4.6 percent through 2018.... [Read Full Story]

Head Of Trump MI Campaign Seeks State GOP Leadership

The Michigan director for Donald Trump’s successful presidential campaign is running to lead the state Republican Party. Scott Hagerstrom announced his bid Friday. Current chairwoman Ronna Romney McDaniel is planning to run again but is also under consideration by Trump to
head the Republican National Committee. Hagerstrom says Michigan has made “great strides” under GOP leadership, but “taxes are still too high, government is still too big, and Michigan families still feel left behind.” Four of Trump’s six Michigan campaign co-chairs announced their support for McDaniel Thursday. Republicans will elect the next chair at their February convention. Trump leads Democrat Hillary Clinton in unofficial returns. He would become the first Republican presidential nominee to win Michigan in 28 years. The state has until November 28 to make the results official.... [Read Full Story]

Ford, UAW Donate $6 Million To Motown Museum

Ford Motor Company and UAW-Ford are investing $6 million in the $50 million expansion of the Motown Museum in Detroit. The investment by the automaker and its collaboration with United Auto Workers members will fund a state-of-the-art performance center and other programming. Museum officials have said the expansion will create space for interactive exhibits at the Detroit tourist attraction. It will be designed and built around the existing museum, which includes the Motown studio with its “Hitsville U.S.A.” facade. Designers and architects are collaborating on details of the expanded space. The museum is located in the house where record company founder Berry Gordy launched his cultural and commercial music empire. The label started in 1959 and scores of stars and hits were created before Motown moved to California in 1972.... [Read Full Story]

Berrien Center Man Killed In Crash

An 81-year-old Berrien Center man has been killed in an accident in Berrien Township. Lieutenant Steve Campbell of the Berrien County Sheriff’s Department tells WSJM News Robert Froehlich pulled his pickup out in front of another pickup truck on Old US-31 from Dean’s Hill Road Friday morning. After the two trucks collided, Froehlich got out and was inspecting the damage when he was hit by a Toyota driven by 30-year-old Jennifer Garrett of Berrien Springs. Neither Garrett nor the other pickup driver, James Ferguson of Berrien Springs, were hurt. Froehlich was pronounced dead at the scene. Alcohol and drugs were not factors in the crash, which remains under investigation. Lt. Campbell says their report will be submitted to the Berrien County Sheriff’s Department for review once it’s complete.... [Read Full Story]

Dowagiac Man To Be Honored At Christmas Parade

The annual Candle-light Christmas Parade in Dowagiac is set for next month, and a local man who’s done a lot to collect money for the needy will be honored with a spot as its grand marshal. Jim Allen has headed up the Feed the Hungry campaign in Dowagiac since 2010, helping to raise more than $75,000 in that time. He’ll be in unit 3 during the December 2 event, riding in a limo. Organizers say that during November and December each year, Allen can be seen going door to door to local businesses drumming up support, and they just wanted to thank him. The Candle-light Christmas Parade steps off at 7 p.m. on Friday December 2 at Front and Main Streets. The day will also feature the annual tree-lighting ceremony.... [Read Full Story]

Six Trucks Stuffed So Far By Y Country Crew

This are going well for the 97-5 Y Country radio crew this week. They’ve been hanging out at Roger’s foodland in St. Joseph collecting food donations as part of the 20th annual Stuff a Truck drive, and so far have filled six trucks with items for the Southwest Michigan Community Action Agency. That’s not to mention the more than $3,100 they’ve raised. However, it’s not over. The crew will be there again live Friday and Saturday taking donations from folks. Just stop by between 6 a.m. and 7 p.m. Friday, or between 8 and 10 a.m. Saturday to give. Food pantries could use the help this time of year.... [Read Full Story]

Economists Project Tight US Labor Market

Economists at the University of Michigan say in an annual forecast that they think the U.S. unemployment rate will stay below 5 percent next year. Five researchers at the university’s Department of Economics put out the report Thursday. They say they found a tightening U.S. labor market with a national economy forecast to add 3.7 million more jobs over the next two years. That’s a slower pace than over the last two years. But they say the predicted falling unemployment rate should help part-time workers who want full-time jobs. The researchers say they believe new light vehicle sales may have peaked and will slow gradually. They say that’s because their analysis found young adults own fewer vehicles because they can’t afford to own detached single-family homes.... [Read Full Story]

Police, Citizen Forum Held In Benton Harbor

Police departments in southwest Michigan are hoping to build a sense of trust and mutual understanding with citizens. That’s why a forum organized by Advocates And Leaders For Police And Community Trust — or, ALPACT — was held Thursday night in Benton Harbor. Retired Michigan State Police Captain Harold Love gave a presentation on the long-term stresses police officers face.... [Read Full Story]