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Tag Archive | "Hilltop"

Cedar Springs Police now Sheriff Deputies


Four Cedar Springs Police officers were sworn in as deputies Friday evening, November 7. From left to right: Deputy Mike Stahl, Deputy Chad Tucker, Deputy Chad Potts, and Deputy Ed Good. Post photo by J. Reed.

Four Cedar Springs Police officers were sworn in as deputies Friday evening, November 7. From left to right: Deputy Mike Stahl, Deputy Chad Tucker, Deputy Chad Potts, and Deputy Ed Good. Post photo by J. Reed.

By Judy Reed

Four Cedar Springs Police officers were sworn in to the Kent County Sheriff Department Friday night, November 7, in a change of command ceremony at the Hilltop Administration building.

Officer Mike Stahl, Officer Chad Tucker, Acting Chief Chad Potts, and Sgt. Ed Good are now officially Kent County Sheriff Deputies. Sgt. Jason Kelley, from the Kent County Sheriff Department, will be in charge of the Cedar Springs unit.

The officers went through an unpinning ceremony, where their spouses unpinned their Cedar Springs badges. Officers Mandy Stahl and Jonathan Ludwick also participated in the unpinning, but will not be working for the Sheriff Department. Officer Mandy, who had been with the Cedar Springs Police Department for 12-1/2 years, decided to retire from police work, and is now working with animals at the Kent County animal shelter. Officer Ludwick was a part time officer.

The Cedar Springs Police before the ceremony. From left to right: Officer Chad Tucker, Officer Jonathan Ludwick, Acting Chief Chad Potts, Officer Mandy Stahl, Officer Mike Stahl, Sgt. Ed Good, and retired Police Chief Roger Parent. Photo courtesy of Kent County Sheriff Department.

The Cedar Springs Police before the ceremony. From left to right: Officer Chad Tucker, Officer Jonathan Ludwick, Acting Chief Chad Potts, Officer Mandy Stahl, Officer Mike Stahl, Sgt. Ed Good, and retired Police Chief Roger Parent. Photo courtesy of Kent County Sheriff Department.

After the unpinning, the officers then went out and changed into their deputy uniforms. Mayor Mark Fankhauser and others gave a few remarks to the audience during that time. “I want to express our sincere appreciation for the work they’ve done. They are top notch. They are still our police department, just with a different uniform. We will grow in a positive and dynamic manner and they will represent us on a much larger scale,” he said.

Dan Koornydke, with the Kent County Board of Commissioners called it a big day, and historic for Kent County. “It’s a great thing we are doing. It’s a win-win for Kent County and Cedar Springs,” he said, noting that Cedar Springs will get all the resources that the Sheriff Department has to offer.

Sheriff Larry Stelma also called it a historic event, and the largest partnering program in Kent County. “It’s innovative and progressive, and you don’t hear that much with City Councils,” he noted. He thanked them, and talked about the meetings with City Manager Thad Taylor and former Police Chief Roger Parent that got the ball rolling. He thanked Kent County Administrator Daryl DeLabbio for his work with staff to make sure interests of both parties were met.

Sheriff Larry Stelma (left) introduces Sgt. Jason Kelley (right), who will be in charge of the Cedar Springs unit. Post photo by J. Reed.

Sheriff Larry Stelma (left) introduces Sgt. Jason Kelley (right), who will be in charge of the Cedar Springs unit. Post photo by J. Reed.

Stelma also thanked the Cedar Springs Police Officers, who he said gave the program their vote of confidence. “It was a courageous move on their part,” he said.

He also thanked his staff, including Chief Deputy Michelle Young, for working out all the details, and thanked the community for having faith in the Sheriff Department.

“Change can be hard,” remarked Stelma. “It’s intimidating and unsettling. Both change and failure to change can be dangerous. When we fail to change, it leads to stagnation. Knowing when to change and how to manage it is critical.”

Stelma gave some history of law enforcement and the changes the city has faced over the years. “This is my town, my community, too, for over 50 years,” he told the audience. “This should be a happy time, an opportunity to build on what the Mayor, the Council, and the City Manager has done. We are maximizing services and being a better steward of our scarce dollars.”

When the deputies returned, they were pinned with their Sheriff badges, and sworn in by Sheriff Stelma. Chaplain Larry VandeVoren, who also used to work for the Cedar Springs Police Department, said a blessing over the officers, asking God to keep them from harm.

The officers and retired Chief Roger Parent were all presented with shadow boxes that contained a Cedar Springs Police Department badge and police patch. A shadow box was also given to the city to display.

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Change of command ceremony for police department


Kent County Sheriff badge

Friday, November 7, 6 p.m., Hilltop 3rd floor boardroom

 

Cedar Springs has had some type of law enforcement, of one form or another, within its borders, since its earliest days as a village. Marshalls, Sheriff deputies, Village and City Police Chiefs and officers, have all served this town—sometimes in more than one capacity.

Another chapter in the history of Cedar Springs law enforcement will end on Friday, November 7, and a new one will begin.

That’s because Friday will officially be the last day of the Cedar Springs Police Department, and the first day of the Kent County Sheriff Department taking over law enforcement services.

To honor the years of service and dedication of the Cedar Springs Police Department to the City of Cedar Springs and its citizens, the public is invited to a “Change of Command Ceremony” on Friday, November 7, at 6 p.m., between the City of Cedar Springs Police Department and the Kent County Sheriff Department. The ceremony will be held in the Cedar Springs Public Schools Hilltop Administration building, 3rd floor boardroom. That’s when the Cedar Springs Police Officers will take the oath of office to become Kent County Sheriff Deputies.

“The Kent County Sheriff Department recognizes the responsibility and trust the citizens and city officials of Cedar Springs have placed with the Kent County Sheriff Department. Sheriff Stelma and his staff look forward to bringing the Sheriff Department’s reputation for professionalism and top notch law enforcement resources to the citizens of Cedar Springs,” said Undersheriff Jon Hess.

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LOCATION CHANGE FOR CANDIDATE FORUM


 

Tuesday, October 28, 6:30 p.m. at Hilltop Admin building, 3rd floor boardroom

The November election is right around the corner, and there are seven people vying for four positions on the Cedar Springs City Council. There will be a candidate forum open to the public on Tuesday, October 28, at 6:30 p.m. in the 3rd floor boardroom, at the Hilltop Administration building (corner of Main and Muskegon). The forum will be hosted by the Community Action Network and the Cedar Springs Post.

The candidates will be asked several questions, and the public will also have a chance to ask some questions through the moderator. There will also be time to talk one on one with the candidates at the end.

Ken Benham, who served for 8 years, is not running again, so his position his open, along with incumbent Mark Fankhauser’s, who is running again. Fankhauser, former council member Pamela Conley, and DDA Chair Perry Hopkins, are all competing for those two seats. As part of the recall side of the election, incumbent Ashley Bremmer is running against Molly Nixon, and incumbent Patricia Troost is running against Rose Powell.

To check out candidate info click here.

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Bell ringing ceremony


Cedar View Elementary students participated in the annual bell ringing ceremony at Hilltop. Brandon Swade, Wyatt Magoon, Alyssa Marshall and Lauryn Heukels rang the bell to mark the end of the school year.  Principal Mike Duffy recognized retiring Cedar View teachers Patricia Felter, Paul Stark, and Craig Gates for their years of dedicated service.

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Mother son movie night and Wee Hawks basketball


Two programs put on by Cedar Springs Parks and Rec are underway in the next week.
The Wee Hawks Basketball Program begins this Saturday, April 30, from 9-10:30 am at the Cedar View Elementary Gym and runs four weeks. Cedar Springs High School basketball coaches work with students in Kindergarten through 2nd grade to help them get a good fundamental start at the game. They will work on some basic ball handling skills and drills, dribbling and work on making a few shots. The program is held at Cedar View Elementary gymnasium and there are special baskets put up so that the youth do not have to shoot as high to get their two points. The participants will receive a basketball at the end of the camp that will allow them to keep practicing on their newfound talent over the summer. Registration forms can be found online at www.csaparksandrec.com or at the CS Public Schools District Office.  Pre-registration is encouraged, but not required.
To celebrate Mother’s Day, there will be a mother-son movie night at the Cedar Springs Middle School on May 6, from 6-9 p.m. The event features the movie “Megamind,” while enjoying pizza and popcorn. It also includes fun activities that give the boys a chance to make a meaningful gift and card for the holiday, and a chance to go into the gym and play together or sit in the cafeteria and have a few moments away from television and distractions of home to play a game together. The night is filled with opportunities for the boys to play with their friends and spend time with their mothers. Tickets are on sale now during normal daytime office hours at Hilltop and Monday-Wednesday evenings at the Middle School from 6-9pm. Tickets in advance are $12 for two people, or $15 for three or more. Tickets can be purchased at the door for an additional fee, $15 for two people, or $20 for three or more.

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Advisory group recommends school improvements


Group proposes sinking fund to finance repairs

By Judy Reed

They were once a source of pride in the community—and praised by other school districts. But the tennis courts at Red Hawk Elementary are now in grave disrepair and no longer needed now that there are much newer tennis courts at the high school and middle school. And the courts at Hilltop are in even worse shape.
Those are just two things that need to be addressed, according to a board advisory group that made recommendations for repair of the Cedar Springs School district’s infrastructure last November.
Board Advisory Group members Sue Wolfe, Barb Lehman, Heidi Reed, Shannon Vanderhyde, Scott Fuller, and Amy Galle identified a list of priorities that centered on maintaining the community’s investment, and discussed ways to fund the improvements.
Some of the things the group recommended were removal of the tennis courts at Red Hawk and Hilltop; repaving parking lots and roads, curb and gutter; increased parking at Cedar Trails, Beach, and high school; replace gym floors at Beach and Cedar View; replace synthetic turf; security modifications; energy efficient boilers; carpeting; several technology improvements, etc.
“The campus is the community showcase. Landscaping and building structures need to highlight and support our image as a great school,” the group noted in the report.
The advisory board said that the general fund revenue and expenses have stayed within a tight range over the last several years, and that the needed repairs could not be met within the current general fund. The group gave the board two ways to pay for the improvements, with one being a bond issue, and the other a sinking fund.
The school board opted to look at the sinking fund, which can be used for the construction and repair of school buildings, and the purchase of real estate, but not routine maintenance or the purchase or replacement of equipment.
On Monday night, the school board saw a rough draft of the language. According to the rough draft, they would be asking for one mill ($1.00 on every $1,000 of taxable evaluation) for a period of 10 years.
While the rough draft mentioned real estate, both the board and Superintendent Ron McDermed were adamant that was not part of what they were considering. “We are not planning to buy property,” remarked McDermed.
The board instructed him to check on whether the “real estate” language needed to be in the proposal. He agreed and will bring back the proposal to the board next month. If they approve the language, the sinking fund proposal will be on the ballot in May, at the same time as the next school board election.

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