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7 counties ‘granted’ opportunity to better connect veterans, benefits

7 counties ‘granted’ opportunity to better connect veterans, benefits

News Release:

More than 22,000 veterans in seven counties will find it easier to file a federal benefits claim with an accredited county veterans service officer, thanks to County Incentive Grants awarded by the Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency (MVAA).

This is MVAA’s second round of one-time grants, and funds awarded include:

 $10,000 for Clare County Veterans Services to increase the accredited county veterans counselor to a full-time position.

 $20,000 for Crawford County to establish a county department of veterans affairs and hire a full-time accredited county veterans counselor.

 $10,000 for Dickinson County Office of Veterans’ Affairs to hire an additional part-time accredited county veterans counselor.

Man pinned in vehicle for several hours

MONTCALM TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WZZM) - A Gowen man was seriously hurt in a crash where he was left pinned in his vehicle for several hours.

The Montcalm County Sheriff's Department says they responded to a report of a one-car crash on Fitzner Road at about 7:30am on Sunday. They found Paul Hamilton, 53, still trapped in his vehicle. They believe Hamilton crashed several hours before and was not found until a passerby saw the scene at about 7:30am.

Deputies believe Hamilton was heading north on Fitzner when he lost control of his vehicle, left the road, overturned, and hit a tree. The crash remains under investigation.

Grattan Twp. home destroyed in explosion

GRATTAN TWP., Mich. (WZZM) - Investigators are still working to determine what caused a home in Grattan Township to explode over the weekend.

The home in the 12000 block of Woodland Park on Big Pine Island Lake was destroyed Saturday. No one was home and no one was injured.

The Grattan Township Fire Chief tells WZZM that the Michigan State Fire Marshall will visiting the scene on Wednesday.

Investigators suspect that the explosion was due to a gas leak, but more will be known after Wednesday.

House fire closes M-44 near Belding

BELDING, Mich. (WZZM) -- Emergency crews fought a fire and explosion in a northwest Ionia County home.

The homeowners called 911 around 6:15 this morning to report a fire in the basement of their home on Belding Road (M-44) near Whites Bridge Road, just west of Belding.

Firefighters at the scene arrived to find the fire spreading through the home, then saw an explosion.

They have called in mutual aid from surrounding communities, including Greenville.

Everyone made it out of the house safely and M-44 reopened at about 11:00am.

Sen. Stabenow announces funding for new Greenville PD vehicle

Sen. Stabenow announces funding for new Greenville PD vehicle

News Release:

U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow, Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, today announced support for the Greenville Police Department in Montcalm County. This funding comes through the USDA's Rural Development Community Facility Grant program, which funds critical infrastructure in rural communities across the country. The $13,500 grant will be used to help the community purchase a new police vehicle.

“Police officers have to cover many miles to protect our families, homes, and communities,” said Stabenow. “This new police car for Greenville will help make sure there is always someone there to quickly respond in an emergency.”

Senator Stabenow is Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, which oversees the USDA and its Rural Development program.

My Town: Greenville businesses awarded training grants

My Town: Greenville businesses awarded training grants

GREENVILLE, Mich.—More than a dozen workers in Greenville will get extra training thanks to a new round of grants.

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation’s Skilled Trades Training Fund recently awarded money to five businesses in Greenville and Alma.

“While our economy continues to gain momentum, some companies seeking specific skilled trades are not able to find trained workers,” Rep. Rick Outman said. “The Skilled Trades Training Fund, which was created by the legislature in 2013, focuses on helping businesses meet their talent challenges. These are competitive awards that not only help individual job creators, but also build a stronger overall economy in Michigan.”

Fire damages 57 Brew Pub & Bistro in Greenville

GREENVILLE, Mich. (WZZM) -- A fire Friday evening in Greenville may have shut down a restaurant for some time.

Workers at 57 Brew Pub & Bistro tell us they heard a noise that sounded like a jet engine. When they went outside to investigate, they noticed smoke coming out of the roof.

It happened during their dinner rush, and about 30 people were evacuated.

Firefighters were able to knock the fire out in less than an hour. It did leave a hole in the roof, and the water used to put out the flames caused extensive damage to the building.

No one was hurt.