The Michigan House of Representatives Tuesday hosted a ceremony honoring first responders and Michigan natives lost in the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001. State Rep. Peter MacGregor invited Courtland Township Fire Chief Mickey Davis to the event. “Sept. 11, 2001 was a tragic day in our nation’s history that we must never forget so we continue to honor those who died and all first responders who continue to fight for our safety,” said MacGregor, R-Rockford. “It was my honor to have Chief Davis with me on the House floor for this special ceremony. I greatly appreciate his sacrifices and the sacrifices of all first responders putting their lives on the line to protect us.” Following the presentation of the colors by a Michigan State Police Honor Guard, the names of fallen military members and first responders were read and honored. The ceremony is an annual event in the Michigan House.
A Courtland Township man and former firefighter has been charged with two counts of criminal sexual conduct (CSC). According to Kent County Undersheriff Jon Hess, the incident allegedly occurred at the home of Terry Lynn Welch, 51, the evening of August 16, or the early morning hours of August 17, and involved a juvenile. Welch was arrested and arraigned that same day, August 17, in 63rd District Court. According to the court, he was charged with one count of CSC second degree (relationship), one count of CSC second degree assault, and with being a habitual offender, for already having a felony on his record. Bond was set at $20,000 cash/surety, and he bonded out. He has a preliminary hearing set for this Friday, September 7, at 10 a.m. Prior to the incident, Welch was deputy fire chief at Courtland Township. According to Fire Chief Mickey Davis, Welch resigned immediately from the fire department, and Steve Mojuk is now deputy chief. Welch was previously arrested in November 1988 and pled guilty in 17th Circuit Court on August 28, 1989, to attempted breaking and entering an occupied dwelling with intent. He received 24 months probation and $1,321 in fines and costs.
Residents who voted to approve a fire millage in Courtland Township already have a tangible benefit from the monies after installation of a fifth warning siren near Braeside Golf Course on Ten Mile Road. Fire Chief Mickey Davis explained, “We now have five emergency warning sirens in Courtland Township. This is what some of our fire millage will be used for. Each siren costs about $20,000. When the National Weather Service issues an alert such as a tornado warning, Kent County dispatch activates all emergency sirens in the county. The sirens are tested at noon on the first Friday of the month from April to October. This siren is located at Braeside Golf Course on 11 Mile Road east of Courtland Drive.”
Many local elections will be decided during the primary elections held on Tuesday, August 7 in the cases where candidates are of the same political party. The following are those who filed to run at the time The Rockford Squire began sending out notices asking for information on each of the candidates. Additional information may now be available at the website accesskent.com. For State Representative for the 73rd District, the Republican candidate is Peter MacGregor, of Rockford, incumbent, and the Democratic candidate is G. Scott Schuiling, also of Rockford. The term ends 2014. Peter F. MacGregor State Representative 73rd District Incumbent Peter F. MacGregor, Republican incumbent running for re-election as state representative for the 73rd District has been a resident of his district for 16 years. He provided the Squire with the following information: “I serve as the current state representative. I have served a year-and-a-half in this position. Prior to this role, I served as the Cannon Township supervisor for six years and Cannon Township trustee for four years. “As a former business owner and job provider, as well as a local elected official, I have the experience to create efficiencies in state government through public policy and pass legislation to improve the overall business environment of our state. I have voted and co-sponsored several important reforms including an income tax cut for all taxpayers, cut legislator pay and health benefits, cut my office budget by 18 percent, eliminated lifetime welfare benefits, and eliminated the job-killing Michigan Business Tax (MBT), to name a few. Additionally, I am accessible to my constituency, holding bi-weekly district office hours and open to hearing from everyone in my district. “I ran for office to contribute to the betterment of our state. I want to make Michigan a place where my boys and all our children can find gainful employment and raise a family. We’ve made great strides in accomplishing this, but there is much more to do and I want to continue to be part of the solution. “While serving on the appropriations committee, we passed a balanced state budget two years in a row and four months ahead of schedule. I want to continue to find efficiencies in our state spending and continue to pass legislation to […]
‘We said from the beginning it all goes back to rescue’ by BETH ALTENA Fourteen fire or police departments have funding for life-saving equipment they needed thanks to the generosity of those who supported the West Michigan Healing Fields (WMHF) memorial to 9/1/1 held last September. The Rockford Area Community Endowment (RACE) met last month to give away the money raised by the sponsorships of the 3,200 flags—each representing one of the people who died 10 years ago in terrorist attacks that changed the U.S. in one horrific day. According to Rockford City Manager Michael Young, the project was brought to RACE by Susan Bodenner, who heard about the program. It allows communities to honor those lost while raising funds for grants to first responders, many of whom were among those killed. She brought the idea to the RACE board, where it was enthusiastically embraced. “We said from the beginning it all goes back to rescue,” said Young. “The franchise was $50,000, so RACE could either lose $50,000, break even or make money.” In addition to covering the initial franchise fee for the WMHF, the project raised nearly $60,000 more given away at the RACE annual meeting held at Rockford City Hall on Tuesday, May 18. Not all of the 20 grant applications or all of the grant request amounts were approved, but an amazing $57,840 in grants were given for worthy needs of local rescue. The grants included $5,000 each to Cannon and Courtland township fire departments, the City of Rockford Police and Fire, and the Kent County Sheriff’s Department Mounted Division, which is located in Rockford in Plainfield Townshhip. Plainfield Fire Department received $4,900 to purchase thermal imaging unit equipment; Algoma Fire Department received $4,882 for needed equipment; Sparta Fire Department received $4,785; Grand Rapids Police Department received their entire grant request of $4,473; Wyoming Police and Grandville Police departments were given $3,500 of their grant request; Grattan Fire Department received $2,400 of their requested grant; and Grandville Fire Department received a check for $2,200 of their requested grant. Polly VonEschen, who is an at-large member of the RACE board, said the grants represented the most the board has given since her tenure on the board. The endowment was formed in the early […]