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Don’t forget to vote on November 6

By Judy Reed

This week we continue our election coverage with candidates for the Village of Sand Lake, the area senate and representative seats, and Kent County Commissioner.

Village of Sand Lake

The Village of Sand Lake has several seats to fill, including Village President and three trustees. However, your ballot will look rather empty and includes a name of a person no longer running. Listed below are your candidates. Some of them you must write in.

NOTE: Nyha French is on the ballot for Village President. She is no longer a candidate since she moved out of the area.

Danielle Hardenburg is a write-in candidate for Village President, which is a two-year term. She currently serves on the Village Council as a trustee. Hardenburg is 33 years old, and grew up in Cedar Springs where she was raised and attended school. “For the past seven years, my family of six children and spouse have lived in Sand Lake. It is in Sand Lake where I currently hold a seat as a Village Council Member, Fire Fighter, and Medical Responder for the Sand Lake fire department over the past three years. I work in the nursing field as a Nurse Technician at Spectrum Health Butterworth Hospital. Currently, I am seeking my Registered Nurse Degree with hopes of continuing my line of work on the Ortho Trauma floor.”

Hardenburg said she is running as a write-in for Sand Lake Village President because there is a serious need there for positive change. 

Besides serving on the Village Council, prior leadership experience includes teaching CPR, assisting on the AYSO board for a brief time, providing assistance on request for a committee where candidates were reviewed for work programs through Michigan Works, and chairing a seat in the neighborhood watch program for the Rockford area.

What strength can she bring to the Village President position? “Besides a fresh start with new ideas and an eagerness to learn, I feel that my passion for the place I raise my family provides all the strength I need. What is best for my family and our community is my driving force. While I may make mistakes its an opportunity to learn and grow.” 

What does she think is Sand Lake’s biggest challenge? “There are many challenges here in Sand Lake. I believe once our annual audit is complete we can really dig in to analyze where and what our biggest issues are that we face.”

Sand Lake Village trustee 

There are three people running for three seats. This is a four-year term. You will only see one name on the ballot, and must write in the other two.

Marcia Helton will show up on the ballot. Helton grew up in Cedar Springs and graduated from Cedar Springs High School. She has lived in Sand Lake, Nelson Township for 30 years after with her husband, Marty Helton. “We have 6 children and 9 grandchildren. Our children attended Tri-County. My husband Marty was the Sand Lake Village DPW Supervisor for 13 years. I am the Custodian for the Sand Lake Village/Nelson Municipal Hall, Library and also at Algoma Township hall.” 

Why is Helton running for a seat? “We have great people that live in Sand Lake and I want to see what I can do, along with our board to help us as Village Residents work together. We’re a small town, but I believe we have big hearts!”

What other leadership has she had? “I served on the Sand Lake Chamber for many years of helping out in many areas, along with being the Secretary after awhile. Linda Misner and myself co-directed, bringing an Easter Egg Hunt to the Village for many years. Also, did the Santa Claus arrival for a few years. Sand Lake is a community that enjoys their children.”

What strength can she bring to the board? “I have been going to the Village meetings for awhile and see there is a need for help in different areas that if I can help, I would like to. We all have opinions, which is good and we need to respect each other’s opinions then work out a compromise. The Village of Sand Lake and Nelson Township can work together to help each other out and accomplish more. 

“I will do the best I can to help out as a Village Trustee to help the residents.”

Rachel Gokey is running as a write-in for Village trustee. She is currently serving as an appointee to the board. “I was born and raised in Lakeview, Michigan before heading to GVSU to obtain my BBA in Management and Marketing. I have lived in the Village of Sand Lake since July 2005. I am married with 3 children. Currently I am a stay at home mom that also substitute teaches in my spare time.”

What is her reason for running? I decided to run because our Village needs some TLC. There is quite a bit of moving forward and working together as a team that needs to be done to get everything accomplished. I do not plan on leaving Sand Lake any time soon. I plan on raising my kids in the community and would love to help our Village anyway I can.

What prior leadership experience does she have? I am currently the President of our Preschool board for Resurrection Lutheran Church in Sand Lake. I spent over 16 years in customer service and management and was happy to serve on various committees through the years from event planning, education planning and more. I enjoy problem solving and brainstorming to help create forward movement and well thought out decisions.

What is the main strength she can bring to the board? The main strength I feel I am bringing to the Village of Sand Lake Council is my determination. I firmly believe that where there is a will there is a way. I love to make things happen! There is nothing better than setting goals and accomplishing them.”

What is the major challenge Sand Lake faces? “I feel like the major challenge our Village is facing is unity. The last few years have been bumpy. My hope is that I can help open positive lines of communication between all Village councils and boards, as well as Nelson Township boards and councils. If we all work together we can head in the right direction of positive change for our entire community.”

Thomas Gore is also a write-in for Village trustee. He is currently serving as an appointee. He did not respond to emails or messages from the Post requesting information.

 

Kent County Commissioner 3rd District

Roger Morgan, of Courtland Township, is running for another term as County Commissioner of the 3rd District. He is running unopposed. It will be his 9th two-year term representing the residents of the City of Cedar Springs; the Villages of Casnovia, Kent City, and Sand Lake; and the townships of Courtland, Nelson, Solon, Spencer, and Tyrone. He is a member of the Gerald R. Ford International Airport Board, and was chair of that board from 2013-2018; is CEO of Rockford Ambulance; is a member of the Kent County Fire Commission and the Kent County 911 board; and a past member of several others. 

Senator – 29th District

There are three candidates running for State Senator in the 29th District: incumbent Peter MacGregor (R), Craig Beach (D), and Nathan Hewer (Lib).

Peter MacGregor is running as a Republican and is seeking another four-year term as our state senator in the 29th district. He and his wife, Christine, have been married for 27 years. They have three sons, Patrick (24), John (22) and Matthew (20). “Our family attends Blythefield Hills Baptist Church in Rockford. I have lived in Kent County Since 1991 and in the senate district for 21 years. I grew up in SE Michigan. Prior to serving as your current State Senator, I owned a small business for 14 years, employing 12-14 employees.” 

Why is he running for office? “My children are why I ran for office. In 2010 when I first decided to run for the legislature, and as a parent of three school-aged children, we were terrified there would not be opportunities in Michigan when they graduated from school. In 2010, our state was the worst state in the country. I wanted to help create an economic environment so that all Michigan residents can thrive. Our state has made an amazing turnaround with unemployment rate at its lowest level since 2000, and personal income rates are up. Michigan is out of the crisis mode and today, because revenues are up, we are investing more in early childhood, career tech education, K-12 education is funded higher than ever before, the roads are being fixed, and our State’s debt has been reduced by $20 Billion. The investment has begun to pay for itself through a stronger, healthier economy. We still have much more to do and I want to continue this amazing transformation of our state over the next 4 years.”

What other experience does he bring to the position? “Prior to joining the State Senate, I served 4-years in the Michigan House of Representatives. From 1997 through 2010, I also served as a Cannon Township Planning Commissioner, Township Trustee and Township Supervisor.  I’m a member of the Rockford Lions Club – serving as the club’s President from 2007-2008. I volunteer as a board member with “Finish the Mission” Veterans Relief Fund, helping veterans and their spouses during critical times in their lives. For the last 2-years I have been pinning Vietnam Veterans with a 50-year commemorative lapel pin – thanking them for their service and properly welcoming these veterans’ home. I am also one of the founding chairmen of “Volley for Mitchell” – a charity volleyball tournament to raise funds for Duchenne’s Muscular Dystrophy.”

What strength does he bring to the position? “My past experiences in both the private sector, running a successful business with 12-14 employees, and in the public sector as a local township official, are where my core strengths come from. I believe we should apply business ‘best practices’ to local and state government, attempting to find efficiencies, cut red tape and demand more accountability. I have the practical experience that helps me lead. When times were tough, early in my legislative serve, I cut my own pay and increased my healthcare co-pays. I have led by example. My commitment is to fight for working taxpayers, so that you will have the secure future that you deserve. I respect that you work hard for your paycheck, and that’s why I want to make sure you keep more of what you earn.” 

What does he feel are the major challenges facing our district? The three major challenges facing our district are 1) Continuing the investment in our infrastructure—not only for roads and bridges, but also water, sewer, storm water, and broadband. 2) Developing a sustainable plan for school mental health and school safety initiatives. 3) Creating a working environment for public/private partnerships for skilled trades training and talent initiatives. 

Craig Beach is the Democratic challenger for state senator in the 29th District. “I have lived in the Rockford area for 20 years. I have been married to my wife Laura, for 29 years and together we have been blessed with three children, each working their way through college. Our family has also welcomed numerous refugee foster children into our home, helping us to experience the world from a larger perspective. These young people are now in college, college graduates, and even business owners. I have taught in public schools for 32 years, 30 years at Rockford High School, teaching Economics, History of World Religions and Advanced Placement European History. My wife, Laura has taught at the elementary level at Rockford Public Schools for 31 years.  

What is his primary reason to run for office? “My main platform issues include: Restoring funding and the respect for education in Lansing. The current political structure has done everything it can to discourage and denigrate the teaching profession, which has scared off our best and brightest young people from pursuing a career in the classroom. This is an ominous issue for the future of our children and grandchildren.

Restoring Michigan’s middle class. The Michigan Association of United Way estimates that close to 50% of Michigan families have an income stream that does not allow them to cover all necessities, plan for retirement and help their children fund post-secondary training. Through my educational plan we will develop in our young people the talent to capture not just a job, but a lifelong career that provides a level of income that creates a stable and sustainable middle class.

Protect our water and natural resources

PFAS, Line 5, and the Nestle water withdrawal are symptoms of a state government that fails our citizens. Michigan receives 10% of the material that flows through Line 5.  Our tourism industry generates $27 billion in economic benefit.  The risk of Line 5 dwarfs our benefit.  The health of our citizens and our economy have been threatened by the failure of the current administrations leveraging of our natural resources to corporate interests. Together we can put people above profits and return government to the citizens who elect it.

Restore governmental accountability and transparency

Unfortunately, our state government is rated last (50th) in the United States and given a “F” grade in terms of governmental accountability and transparency.  This shows a troubling disregard for the citizens who elect our legislators. I will restore governmental transparency so that citizens have confidence that their voices carry as much weight as “dark money” donors.

What other leadership experience does he bring? “I have served on the Otisco Township as a township board trustee and on the zoning board.”

What is the main strength he brings to the position? “I believe an effective education is the key to the success of our state. As someone who has taught for 32 years I believe I bring practical knowledge to this foundational issue. If we can develop our young people’s talent, talent will provide them the tools to capture a career, not just a job and a career will create a sustainable, thriving middle class. I will end our divisive political culture by working with all stakeholders.  Our state will become more prosperous and vibrant when we put people above politics.

What does he see as the major challenge facing our district? Creating an educational system that ensures our young people will have the talent to have a sustainable standard of living; one that covers family necessities, health care, retirement and post-secondary training for their children.

Protecting the health of our citizens through greater governmental oversight of our water and natural resources. We need to put people first and preserve the beauty of our wonderful state.

Addressing our dismal governmental transparency and accountability issues.

Nathan Hewer is the Libertarian candidate for state senator in the 29th District. Hewer grew up in Reed City, a small town about an hour north of Grand Rapids, but has lived in Cannonsburg Township for the last five years. “I went to college at Ferris State University in Big Rapids, graduating with a bachelor’s degree in Construction management and 2 associates degrees, one in Business and one in Building Trades Management. While at college, my wife Amanda and I started our family very early, when I was 18 years old, with my son Ayden (now 14 years old), followed by Charlie (13), Emma (11) and Ella (6). I paid my way through college by working 2-3 jobs until I started a small contracting business and was able to support my family through that job alone. After college graduation I worked across the country as a superintendent and project manager for large industrial and mining construction projects. In 2013 I was able to move back to Michigan. I now work for Meijer in the corporate office managing construction.” 

Why is he for running for office? “I have a deeply held conviction that people should be allowed to run their own lives without government interference. I believe in the liberty of the individual to make their own choices. I believe in true free markets without corporate welfare and government kickbacks. I believe people should have the right to keep the money they earn. I believe individuals should be allowed to chase their dreams without the government protecting big businesses though unnecessary licensing, red tape and bureaucracy. And I believe that individuals have a second amendment right to protect themselves and those rights in the manner they see fit. It became apparent to me at the end of the 2016 election cycle that without a third party both parties will continue to erode our freedoms campaigning as the lesser of two evils. I decided I could no longer sit on the sidelines and watch both Democrats and Republicans trample these rights. We need a strong third party to force politicians to campaign on their convictions and not just demonize the opposition. Libertarians are the best voice for freedom and liberty. As your state senator I can help keep the government out of your wallet, bedroom, health care system, and your markets.”

What other leadership experience does he have? “I was involved with the Republican party for many years. I was a Precinct Delegate and a poll watcher in 2004 and 2008 involved in campaigning for them in Northern Michigan. Most recently I was a Precinct Delegate in the 2016 election. This experience showed me that as long as we only have 2 choices no one will campaign on any principles. They will simply find a demographic to cater to and offer to use their power to their advantage at the expense of others. I joined the Libertarian Party in 2016 and have worked in various committees within the party since.” 

What is the main strength he would bring to the position? “Tenacity, independence and conviction. My wife and I had three kids by the age of 21. I was able to finance my own education while supporting my family and I was an MMA fighter for 10 years. I know how to stretch a dollar and I have the tenacity and grit to fight for a cause. People don’t want to be taxed more; they want their existing taxes to be used for their intended purpose. If you want someone to defend your personal freedoms, make better use of existing funding and protect your paycheck, elect the fighter to take the politicians, lobbyists and special interests to the mat for your liberty.”

What does he see as the major challenge facing our district? 

“The challenges that face my district are largely the same as those facing the state and the country. Democrats are attacking half of the constituent’s freedoms and Republicans are attacking the other half. Both take your money and spend it on their pet projects. They both have marketed for years that you only have two choices. They know they can steam roll half of their constituents as long as they can claim they are better than the other guy. We need an independent voice for the people in Lansing that says it is the people’s individual right to make their own choices to pursue life liberty and happiness, and they must be allowed to keep the money they earn to spend as they see fit.” 

73rd District Representative

There are two candidates running for state representative of the 73rd District: Lynn Afendoulis (R) and Bill Saxton (D).

Lynn Afendoulis is running as a Republican and is seeking a two-year term as state representative. “I was born in 1958 in Grand Rapids, Mich. My mother was an elementary school teacher; my father owned a restaurant. I am part of a large, extended family that includes my second cousin and the current state representative for the 73rd District, Chris Afendoulis. I started my career as a newspaper reporter. For 25 years, I have worked in various capacities for Universal Forest Products; for last 15 years I have been director of corporate communications. I have lived in the area most of my life. Today, am a resident of Grand Rapids Township. Most importantly, I am the mother of two– a daughter who is a junior in college and a son who is a senior in high school.”

What is the main reason she is running for office? “I love this state and I have been pleased with many of the accomplishments of the current legislature. I want to continue the Michigan Comeback and improve upon it to make sure it is meaningful to all. Importantly, I believe holding office is an honorable vocation and want to demonstrate that to my children and their friends so they might see it as a worthy opportunity for people of integrity, and so that they might understand the work and commitment behind a healthy, successful republic.”

What other leadership experience does she have? “I sit on the boards of the Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce and the Economic Club of Grand Rapids. I resigned a few seats to run for office: my church’s parish council and the Michigan Transportation Commission, to which I was appointed in 2013 by Gov. Snyder. I have had the honor of serving on many other boards, including the Grand Rapids Student Advancement Foundation (which serves Grand Rapids Public Schools and which I chaired for a number of years), Grand Rapids Youth Commonwealth (now the Boys and Girls Club of Grand Rapids), Opera Grand Rapids, Circle Theatre and others.”

What is the main strength she would bring to the position? “I bring to the table conservative principles, 35 years of business experience and communication expertise, a history of public service and a passion for respect, accountability and results. From that combination of experience springs an ability to make thoughtful, sound decisions based in facts and not emotion, a commitment to working with integrity and toward results, and a perspective of someone who hasn’t worked in politics, but understand what it takes to get a job done.” 

What does she see as the major challenge facing our district?  “The 73rd district, like all others, needs improvements in education and training for today’s jobs, better roads and infrastructure, and a more efficient and understandable government, but at the top of the list of issues is the quality of our water. This is a basic human need for which the government is responsible. I was heartened by the legislature’s current allocation for addressing PFAS, but how and when that money is spent is critical. It must reach communities and people in the form of solid solutions. As your legislator, I will stay on top of the entities and individuals responsible; I will listen to and learn from local officials to make sure they are satisfied with the response. I will listen to residents and I won’t rest until they feel that the water they use for their families, pets, crops, homes and recreation is safe. We must make sure that water in our state is protected from PFAS and other threats; this abundant Michigan resource is our treasure and our responsibility.  

One other issue critical to making sure anything in politics gets done in Michigan—and everywhere—is practicing respect, even for those with whom we disagree. I will do that. Those who call for incivility harm the republic and model dangerous behavior for our next generations. We must show that we are bigger than our differences through thoughtful, respectful communication and action and by doing what we are sent to Lansing to do: listen to the taxpayers and work together to get things done for them as responsible public servants.” 

Bill Saxton is running as the Democratic candidate for state representative in the 73rd District. “I’m Bill Saxton and I’m 40 years-old, currently residing in East Grand Rapids. I’m a small-business owner, an engineer, and married with 3 young children. My wife and I are raising our kids in the Grand Rapids area because of the great schools, the tight-knit communities, and shared Midwest values. We are members of Central Reformed Church and our oldest attends preschool at Grand Rapids Christian.”

What is the main reason he is running for office? “Every family should have access to safe, clean drinking water, every child deserves a high-quality education, and everyone, regardless of age, deserves affordable healthcare and prescription drugs.  Over the last 8 years, our government has prioritized polluting industries over the environment, has left our public-school system severely underfunded, and has done nothing to rein in the costs of health insurance and the price-gouging of pharmaceutical companies. I’m running because we need someone new representing us in Lansing who will work to solve these problems, for us and our children. As an engineer, I have the problem-solving abilities we need to think creatively and get real solutions.”  

What other leadership experience does he have? “I’ve been focused on providing for my 3 young children and coaching their t-ball teams. But, when I saw how under-funded our schools were and the multiple crises our environment was facing, my family and I felt compelled to act. This is not the time to elect a typical politician.”

What is the main strength he would bring to the position? “As an engineer and small business owner, our district could use a problem-solver with my real-world experience, rather than another partisan politician. I will also work across the aisle to find solutions to our State’s issues.  In business, you don’t ask your employees or customers what their political affiliation is—you establish relationships based upon mutual respect and trust. My family has both Democrats and Republicans and most of us work to find common ground with one another.”

What does he see as the major challenge facing our district? “Although the government is, belatedly, dealing with the groundwater contamination issues across the district, many of the people I’m talking to are still not drinking their tap-water even if their water considered safe—people simply do not trust the government, particularly after the Flint water crisis. We need to work on getting that credibility back or we’re simply wasting millions of dollars on these cleanup efforts. I think more transparency in the process and more community involvement will go a long way.”

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Red Hawks head to district championship game

There was no stopping the Red Hawks in their 46-7 win over Gaylord in the pre-district home game last Friday. Photo by Kelly and Rob LaLone.

STORY BY JUDY REED

The Cedar Springs Red Hawks were a force to be reckoned with in last Friday’s pre-district win at home over Gaylord. The Red Hawks racked up 410 yards rushing and 49 yards passing in their 46-7 win over the Blue Devils, and upped their record to 9-1.

“Home playoff games are very special,” noted Red Hawk Coach Gus Kapolka. “We’ve only had four in the history of Cedar Springs, so Friday night was a great experience for our team. Our guys were energized by the big crowd and went out and played a sharp game. I was pleased with the physicality that we brought, and our execution in all three phases of the game was good.”

The win means they will face the Mount Pleasant Oilers (10-0) at Mount Pleasant this Friday for the District Championship. They won 35-6 over Petoskey last Friday.

“Mt. Pleasant is an undefeated team that has only given up 75 points the entire season,” said Kapolka. “This will be our toughest test of the season so far. I believe that the game will come down to turnovers, explosive plays, and special teams.”

The Red Hawks controlled the game from the beginning kickoff. They went 70 yards on just six plays and scored when quarterback Kolby Swank ran to the right for a 17-yard touchdown. Sage Serbenta then ran in the extra points.

Their next scoring drive was set in motion when Serbenta intercepted a pass from Gaylord QB Ryan Stefanski at the Cedar Springs 10 yard line and ran it back to the 26. They scored with 1:27 left in the first when Ryan Ringler ran up the middle for an 11-yard touchdown. Serbenta ran in the extra points, and the score at the end of the first quarter was Cedar Springs 16, Gaylord 0.

Cedar Springs scored two more touchdowns in the second quarter. About a minute into the quarter, Gaylord punted and Cedar took over on their own 12-yard line. Several plays later it was 3rd and 11 at their own 39, when Serbenta threw a 43-yard pass to Nate Webb to make it first and 10 on the Gaylord 18. Ethan West made two runs of 7 and 8 yards, before Ringler ran in a 3-yard touchdown. Swank then passed to West for the extra points.

Ringler scored again on an 11-yard run with just 56 seconds left on the clock in the second, and West ran in the extra points. They then kicked off to Gaylord, and the Blue Devils got the ball on their own 35-yard line. With seven seconds remaining, Stefanski attempted a pass from the Cedar Springs 43 to Cade Foster, but Red Hawk Lucas Pienton intercepted it at the 2-yard line, ending their attempt to score in the first half.

The Red Hawks went into half time leading 32-0.

Cedar Springs scored again in the third quarter with 7:50 left when Landon Totten ran to the left for a 20-yard touchdown. Swank’s pass to Kaden Liggett was good for the extra points.

The Red Hawks scored one last time in the fourth quarter, when Jeremy Champione ran left for an 8-yard touchdown. The extra point run was no good.

Gaylord finally got on the board in the fourth quarter with 6:22 left when Cade Foster ran left for a 16-yard touchdown. The extra point kick by Joey Kotsko was good.

The District 3 Region 1 District 1 playoff game ended with a score of Cedar Springs 46, Gaylord 7.

Leading rushers for Cedar Springs were Serbenta with 109 yards; Ringler with 95; Totten with 54; West with 30; Ben Shaw with 27; Swank with 26; Zack Schmid with 23; Champione with 18; Lucas Pienton with 17; Elliston with 10; and Brunin with 1.

On defense, Ringler led in tackles with 8; Gage Gardner had 6; Totten had 5; Shaw 4; Serbenta and Xavier Anderson 3; and 11 others had 2 or less.

The Red Hawks will travel to Mount Pleasant High School this Friday, November 2, for the District Championship. Game time is 7 p.m., and tickets are $6. You can buy them at the gate, or purchase them at Cedar Springs High School on Thursday and Friday from 6:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. High School students will also be in the circle drive at Cedar Springs High School from 3-4 p.m. to decorate/paint your car if you’d like, and you can then caravan with others drivers from there at 4 p.m. The dress theme for fans is a black out, so fans are being asked to wear a black coat if you can. Check out the Cedar Springs Athletic Boosters Facebook page for updates.

If you cannot make the trip to Mount Pleasant, the game will also be streamed on MHSAA TV. For subscription options just go to https://www.nfhsnetwork.com/events/mhsaa-mi/gam9e380a9742.

The winner of the Cedar Springs vs Mount Pleasant game will move on to face the winner of the Muskegon vs Grand Rapids Christian game.

 

 

 

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Child dies after being run over by trailer

Updated on Nov. 2 with the name of the victim.

A trick or treating event in the Village of Sheridan ended in tragedy Wednesday night, October 31, when an 8-year-old child fell off a trailer and was run over.

Troopers from the Michigan State Police Post in Lakeview are investigating the accident. According to police, the vehicle involved was a 1949 small farm tractor pulling an aluminum trailer with seats built into it. The tractor and trailer were being used to take kids from the Sheridan area trick or treating within the village. The child fell from the trailer and was run over by the trailer wheels. Witnesses indicated the tractor was going at a slow rate of speed at the time the child fell off.

Immediate first aid was provided at the scene from first responders who were present. The victim was transported to Sheridan Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

The child was identified as Brady James Sexton, 8, of Sidney, Michigan. Police do not suspect alcohol or drugs were involved in the accident.

The accident is still under investigation. Montcalm County EMS, Sheridan Fire Department, and the Montcalm Sheriff Department and Victims advocate all assisted at the scene.

 

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City to hold special meeting on marihuana ordinance

Meeting to be held Thursday, Nov. 1, at CS Public Library 6 p.m.

by Judy Reed

The City of Cedar Springs will hold a special meeting on Thursday, November 1, at the Cedar Springs Public Library at 6 p.m. to discuss an amendment to the ordinance on marihuana facilities and establishments in the City.

According to City Manager Mike Womack, this special meeting on November 1 is for the City Council to do a first reading of this proposed Marihuana Ordinance, which would forbid commercial marihuana facilities or establishments from opening in the City. The City would then seek to approve that ordinance at the November 8th regular meeting if Proposal 1 is passed by Michigan voters next week.

 “If the state-wide voters approve of ballot proposal 1 on November 6, the City is worried about the potential for the City to be inundated with marihuana businesses before the State can issue regulations,” said Womack. “I think most cities are going to take a wait and see attitude due to how much time the State took in implementing the medical dispensary rules. I should emphasize that this ordinance is not necessarily indicative of the City or City Council’s long term intent on whether marihuana facilities will be permitted in the City or not.” 

He said that this local ordinance only affects whether a commercial marihuana business could open in the City and would not affect any other rights granted to individuals under the proposal.

There are two parts to the ordinance, and while the Chapter 4 part can be passed at the November 8 meeting but the Chapter 40 ordinance must hold a public hearing with a 15-day notice period. 

The other business that may come up at the special meeting is an intent for the City to obtain a bond to extend city and water service on West Street for a potential business park. Matching grants will come available in early January and the City will need to be able to come up with their part of the grant.

The special meeting is being held at the Cedar Springs Public Library instead of City Hall because the carpeting is currently being replaced in the City Chambers.

 

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We are the champions

Pictured is the Varsity football team after their Ok White conference win.

Boys cross country are number one in the OK White conference.

Two Cedar Springs athletic teams made history last week when they captured their first ever OK White conference championships. Both the Varsity football and boys cross country teams have won championships in the past, but this is the first in the OK White, which they’ve been a member of since 2016. Way to go! For more details, see stories here.

COMMUNITY TAILGATE: The football team will host Gaylord this Friday, October 26, in a pre-district game at 7 p.m. Everyone is invited to a community tailgate in the Cedar Springs High School parking lot from 4 p.m. until game time. Lots of fun planned: music/DJ, balloon artist, contests, lawn games, cheap hot dogs (50 cents or $1 with chips) and free waters. Or bring your own food and snacks! Cheerleaders and band will be there as well. Be sure to wear all black—it’s a black out game!

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Man charged with homicide in shooting

Jensen was arraigned on six felony charges in the shooting death of John Mast, of Stanwood.

The man suspected of killing another man outside of a bar/restaurant in Morley Saturday evening was arraigned Monday.

Randall Robert Jensen, 48, was arraigned in Mecosta County’s 77th District Court on October 22 and formally charged with six felonies. Count 1: Homicide – Open Murder; Count 2: Weapons – Felony Firearms; Count 3: Assault with a dangerous weapon; Count 4: Weapons – Felony Firearms; Count 5: Assault with a dangerous weapon; Count 6: Weapons – Felony Firearms.  Jensen is being held in the Mecosta County Jail without bond pending further court action.

Police circulated this photo when looking for the suspect after the shooting.

According to the Mecosta County Sheriff’s Office, the shooting occurred on Saturday, October, 20, at about 11:00 p,m, outside of a bar/restaurant in the village of Morley.  John Mast, 47, of Stanwood, was shot multiple times resulting in his death.  

The shooter, idenitifed as Randall Robert Jensen, 48, of Stanwood, fled the scene but was taken into custody on Sunday without incident. 

 

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Greenville roofer sentenced to prison for tax evasion

 

John Frederick Snyder, owner of Snyder’s Roofing, willfully underreported his income by over $6 Million for tax years 2009 to 2014

U.S. District Judge Gordon J. Quist sentenced John Frederick Snyder, 72, of Greenville, Michigan, and owner of Snyder’s Roofing, to 12 months and 1 day in prison on October 18 following his guilty plea to a felony information charging him with tax evasion for the 2011 tax year. Snyder further admitted to willfully evading the assessment of income taxes for 2009 to 2014 by underreporting his income by over $6 million. The court also ordered Snyder to pay restitution of $414,160.00, representing the amount of taxes he intentionally failed to pay, which Snyder paid in full prior to sentencing. The IRS will assess interest and penalties against

Snyder in the additional amount of approximately $600,000.00.

“Today, the court again justifiably recognized that the integrity of our country’s tax system depends upon voluntary and honest participation by everyone,” said U.S. Attorney Andrew Birge.

“Those who repeatedly and intentionally evade their obligation to accurately report their income and pay their fair share of taxes will be brought before the court and face appropriate punishment, up to and including imprisonment.”

According to his plea agreement and court records, Snyder consistently failed to timely file tax returns and when he did file he underreported the amount of his business income. He purposely deposited less than all of his business income into his business bank account without informing his accountant. Instead, he took checks from his customers and signed them over to his suppliers (making them third-party checks) to pay for the materials and services used in his business. Because of this practice, his business account never showed his actual business income. Snyder also carried out his tax evasion scheme by depositing checks made payable directly to him for the work of his roofing business into his personal bank accounts, taking back cash at the same time, or negotiating the entire amount of the checks for cash. Snyder used some of this unreported cash to pay his employees.

“This is a classic example of greed,” said Manny Muriel, IRS-Criminal Investigation Special Agent in Charge of the Detroit Field Office. “Snyder blatantly disregarded the law to line his own pockets. He painstakingly took steps to avoid paying his fair share of taxes. IRS-Criminal Investigation will continue to seek out and find those who choose to disregard the tax laws.”

The IRS-Criminal Investigation Division, Grand Rapids, conducted the investigation, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Ronald M. Stella prosecuted the case.

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Post travels out west

The Post traveled with the Anielski family in August when they took a trip out west. “Our family took a vacation taking a Route 66 road trip from Grand Rapids all the way to Las Vegas,” said Lisa Anielski. “We also went to the Grand Canyon and four corners where all 4 states meet.”

It sounds like the Anielski family had a great time! Thanks for taking us with you!

Are you going on vacation? Take the Post with you and snap some photos. Then send them to us with some info to news@cedarspringspost.com or mail them to Post travels, PO Box 370, Cedar Springs, MI 49319. We will be looking for yours!

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Halloween

It’s time once again for the annual Halloween Spooktacular on October 31 in Cedar Springs, and that means lots of witches, goblins, zombies, superheroes, and more will be traveling up and down Main Street to treats from the businesses. Trick or treating at downtown businesses will take place from 5-6:30 p.m. and residential trick or treating is from 5-8 p.m. See more Halloween activities on page 7.

You may have also noticed that some of the flowerpots downtown have been decorated. The DDA worked with the Chamber to put together the Decorate a Pot contest that you now see lining Main St. Trick or Treaters will get a chance to vote for their favorite decoration and the money collected for the entry fee from the decorators will go to the charity of the winner’s choice. While you are out trick or treating take a minute to vote for you favorite either by paper ballot at City Hall or online at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/LFHX7SG.

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CSHS Class of 71 Reunion

Front row (L to R): Rose Grimes-Powell, Vicki Hays-Haynes, Michele Sandro, Mary Rossett-Steffes-Schmidt, Nancy Clark-Noreen, Teri Zielinski-Marin (1970 Red Flannel Queen), Teresa Middleton-Pountney. Second row: Mike Lewis, Bill Fisher, Kim Hough, Lyle Streeter, Kris Reyburn (front), Mark Lester (back), Marjo Frandsen-Christensen, Jan Hamilton-Chase, Sue Waite-Wolfe, and Sharon Gunneson-Magoon. Those not present for the photo but joining in later include Steve Fisk, Marshall Morris, Harvey White, and Shirley Miller-Tompkins.

The Cedar Springs Class of 1971 gathered in honor of their 47th year since graduation and titled it their “Medicare Coming Out” celebration. The graduates met at the Cedar Springs Community Library on Saturday, October 13 from 5 to 9 PM where they enjoyed a delicious buffet and fellowship. 

Librarian Donna Clark was on hand to give a personal tour of the library along with some library history. Donna is also a sister-in-law to class member Kim Hough. Donna inspired the group to purchase a brick in tribute to the Class 1971 with classmate Kris Reyburn offering to fund it.  

Cedar Springs High School graduate and City Councilor Rose Powell provided an update on the Community Building Development Team, City Happenings, and the Veteran’s Tribute, which she is chairing in partnership with the American Legion. 

Mark Lester, graduate and published author, challenged classmates to write a brief life story. To date, only one classmate, Bugle Editor Tom Noreen, has completed this challenge but promises for more stories by the next reunion were made. 

A moment of remembrance was held for the 27 classmates who have passed on since graduation. Letters and photos from classmates not able to attend were shared along a display of high school and past reunion photos. 

A classmate directory was provided so all can stay in touch with each other. Paula Newland-Brink has established and provides updates through a Class of 71 Facebook page. 

Out of the class of 124 graduates, 21 were present at either the library or at the Cedar Springs Brewing Co. following the library gathering. 

The Class of 71 will continue to meet every other year as they have done for the past several years. Steve Fisk will be having a “reunion planning meeting” sometime in 2019. Then, in 2021 they will have the honor of joining the 50+ Year Graduates who gather each summer in CSHS cafeteria.

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