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My Town: U.S. Congressman Dave Camp retiring

My Town: U.S. Congressman Dave Camp retiring

GREENVILLE, Mich.— The man representing Greenville in Congress will not be running for re-election.

Rep. Dave Camp (R-MI) announced his retirement Monday, issuing the following statement:

“Today, I am announcing that I will not seek re-election to the United States House of Representatives.  This decision was reached after much consideration and discussion with my family.

“Serving in Congress is the great honor of my professional life.  I am deeply grateful to the people of the 4th Congressional District for placing their trust in me.  Over the years, their unwavering support has been a source of strength, purpose and inspiration.

“During the next nine months, I will redouble my efforts to grow our economy and expand opportunity for every American by fixing our broken tax code, permanently solving physician payments for seniors, strengthening the social safety net and finding new markets for U.S. goods and services.”

John Decker files candidacy for 73rd District House seat

John Decker files candidacy for 73rd District House seat

CANNON TOWNSHIP, Mich. – John A. Decker, retired auto dealership owner, announced his candidacy in the Aug. 5, 2014 Republican primary for Michigan’s 73rd House District.

The seat is currently held by Peter MacGregor, who has chosen not to seek re-election and is instead vying for a seat in the Michigan Senate.

“I plan to take the knowledge I gained as a responsible businessman to Lansing and represent the 73rd District with the utmost integrity,” said Decker, who has nearly 25 years experience owning General Motors dealerships. “I am fortunate enough to be retired, but I have the desire to give back to the communities that supported me both as a businessman and personally.”

Decker resides in Kent County’s Cannon Township. He has been married for 30 years to his wife, Connie.

Senator Jansen decides against congressional run

Senator Jansen decides against congressional run

KENT COUNTY, Mich.—  Republican Senator Mark Jansen says he will not join the race for Congressman Justin Amash’s seat next year.

“I have decided at this time my focus will continue to help Michigan find the road to recovery, from Grand Rapids to Detroit to the Upper Peninsula to our lake shores,” Jansen said. ”Right now I really feel the call to continue helping Michigan’s recovery as my Senate term ends in 13 short months.”

Jansen says he has been “strongly encouraged” to run for the 3rd Congressional District seat for the past two years.  He believes people want the same level of reform achieved in Michigan to happen in Washington.

Jansen represents the northern portion of Kent County.  The U.S. 3rd Congressional District includes Belding, Rockford, Lowell, East Grand Rapids, Walker, Ada and Cascade, Alpine Township, Sparta, Plainfield Township and all of Grand Rapids.

Belding City Council incumbent ousted

Belding City Council incumbent ousted

BELDING, Mich.— A new face is joining Belding’s city council.

Tuesday night, voters elected challenger Jerome Lallo over incumbent Andrew Belding, 175 votes to 147 votes. Incumbents Mike Scheid and Ron Gunderson will keep their seats, garnering 204 votes and 200 votes respectively.  .

The newly elected/re-elected city council members will serve a five-year term so the city can move its election to an even year.  Current council members will also have their term extended by a year.  After those terms expire, all city council positions will return to four year terms.

For a link to the complete election results, visit the WZZM 13 homepage here.

Belding election a showdown for seats in city council

Belding election a showdown for seats in city council

BELDING, Mich.—Should all of Belding’s current city council members remain on the board?

Voters will answer that question Tuesday, November 5.

City Manager Meg Mullendore says Mike Scheid, Ron Gunderson and Andrea Belding are all running to keep their seats.  They face two challengers—Amy Thomas and Jerome Lallo. 

City council terms have been extended a year to five years, so the city can shift its elections to an even year.  Those not up for election will have their term extended by one year as well.  After those terms expire, all city council positions will return to four year terms.

Polls open at 7 a.m.; voting ends at 8 p.m.

Belding Planning Commission to consider membership changes

Belding Planning Commission to consider membership changes

BELDING, Mich.--   The planning commission next month will consider whether to recommend permanently reducing its numbers from seven to five members.

In a message to the planning commission, City Manager Meg Mullendore says the current ordinance requires the planning commission to consist of seven members with a four-person consensus.  However, Mullendore says no residents have shown interest in joining the commission, despite advertisement by the City. 

The planning commission will only vote on whether the proposed amendment should go to the city council for a vote.  Under the proposed measure, only three of the five planning commission members would need to vote the same way for a consensus.

The issue is expected to be on the agenda during next month's regular meeting.

Summer reading contest winner gets trip to the Capitol

Summer reading contest winner gets trip to the Capitol

GREENVILLE, Mich.—One lucky child will win a trip to the Capitol to see how state government works, as part of a summer reading contest involving Flat River Community Library in Greenville.

State Rep. Rick Outman is partnering with libraries in his district to encourage children to read this summer, keeping their skills sharp for the start of another school year.

"Kids who read are able to experience new places and ideas they may never encounter elsewhere," Outman said. "Keeping that curiosity and quest for knowledge fresh during the summer months is very important.