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My Town Walker: Replacement sought for District 6 Commissioner

My Town Walker: Replacement sought for District 6 Commissioner

WALKER, Mich.--- The Kent County Board of Commissioners is accepting applications to replace its District 6 Commissioner, who resigned amid allegations of embezzlement.

Michael Wawee is charged with obtaining money under false pretenses for his own use from the Catholic Diocese of Grand Rapids and Holy Cross Cemetery, where Wawee works. He’s accused of taking between $1,000 and $20,000.

Wawee released this statement to the commission:

“In our Country, we're blessed enough to have a judicial system where we are innocent until proven guilty. That being said, I need to focus my energy on my family and proving my innocence. That unfortunately means I will not be able to dedicate the time necessary to represent my constituents.”

The person who replaces Wawee will serve out his term, which ends Dec. 31, 2014.

The Best Times in Michigan are Free

The Best Times in Michigan are Free

I travel on Butterworth Dr NW in Walker, MI often on my way to the Mall or to visit family and always enjoy seeing people in Johnson Park, just off Wilson Ave NW.

Summertime is an especially busy time at this park with people enjoying a picnic, jogging, playing catch, weddings, family reunions and some just plain enjoying the scenery and people watching. It really is a busy park.

Recently I drove this same way and was very disappointed to see few people enjoying this same park. There were about 8-10 cars in the parking lot of people who were up on the big sliding hill enjoying the sunshine and the thrill of sliding down that hill, some on sleds, toboggans, tubes and some even just with a cardboard box.

As I drove through I wondered, where are all those people who use this park all summer and fall? Why aren’t they out here enjoying the winter sports and seeing the beauty of nature?

Community grant funding hearing set for Jan. 13

Community grant funding hearing set for Jan. 13

WALKER, Mich.— The public is invited to weigh in on potential improvement projects that could be paid for with a Community Development Block Grant.

A public hearing will take place at 7 p.m. inside the Walker City Commission Chambers, located at 4243 Remembrance Rd. NW. 

During that meeting, the city commission is also expected to approve a resolution applying $46,562 of the 2014 Community Development Block Grant toward installing sidewalks over two highways, along Alpine Avenue, north of 3 Mile Road.  Many businesses and residents consider the area dangerous, since it many vehicles are using that section of the road to exit and enter U.S. 131 and Interstate 96. 

The city began setting aside funding for the $162,550 project last year. If all goes well, the sidewalks could be built late this year.

United Methodist Church of the Dunes to Present Christmas Eve Candlelight Services

DEC. 17, 2013, GRAND HAVEN, MICH.—United Methodist Church of the Dunes (UMCD), at 717 Sheldon Road in Grand Haven, will present its annual Christmas Eve Candlelight Worship Services on Dec. 24 at 7 and 11 p.m. The general public is invited to attend free of charge. The theme for both services will be “A Festival of Lessons and Carols” by Hal H. Hopson. Featured will be readings and scriptural lessons of faith, along with the following musical numbers: • O Come All Ye Faithful • The God of Abr’am Praise • Lo, How a Rose • There is no Rose • Good Christian Friends, Rejoice • Angels We Have Heard on High • Joy to the World The 7 p.m. event is a “Family Service.” The UMCD Youth and Children’s Choirs, plus chimers and bell ringers will be featured. The 11 p.m. event will feature the UMCD Bells of Glory and Chancel Choirs. “The 11 p.m. candlelight service is more of a contemplative and reflective service,” said Jean Schuitman, director of music and organist at UMCD.

City Commission backs development expansion

City Commission backs development expansion

WALKER, Mich.—The Walker City Commission is giving a growing condominium community  its conditional approval.

Commissioners Monday night approved a resolution for Phase I-A of Cambridge Grove,  located off Richmond Street, just west of Wilson Avenue.  Developer Ken Ver Woert wants to add ten lots to the development,  extend Gordonshire Drive and improve the community infrastructure. 

The city has capped the community off at 145 condominiums.  Community Development Director Frank Wash says the city previously approved 17 condominium lots in 2006, but not all have been built on or sold.  He says Ver Woert recorded the ten lots of Phase I-A prior to getting city approval because of a state law.  According to the statute, Ver Woert must enter a new phase of development every seven years, or he loses rights to develop the land.

Walker Fire Department holds badge ceremony for five new members

Walker Fire Department holds badge ceremony for five new members

WALKER, Mich.—The Walker Fire Department will officially welcome five paid on-call firefighters onto its force Monday night.

A fire department badge ceremony will take place at the fire station at 4101 Lake Michigan Dr. in Standale at 6 p.m. Monday.  Fire Chief Robert Walker says the firefighters receiving their badges and helmet shields made it through training and passed the one-year probationary period.  Walker says they're already answering fire calls.

Walker says the new firefighters will be distributed throughout the city’s three fire stations as follows:

Station 1 (4343 Remembrance Road NW)

  • Mike Boerman

Station 2 (4101 Lake Michigan Dr., Standale)

  • Todd Kooienga
  • Andy Riley

Station 3 (1470 Three Mile Road)

  • Jared Yax
  • David Jennings

Grand Valley Metropolitan Council welcomes new members

Grand Valley Metropolitan Council welcomes new members

WALKER, Mich.—The Grand Valley Metropolitan Council has some new faces at its helm.

During the Dec. 5 meeting, Grandville Mayor Steve Maas, Kentwood Mayor Steve Keply and Walker Mayor Mark Huizenga officially joined the GVMC Board of Directors.  All three men were elected in November and selected by city members to serve on the panel.

Ada Township Supervisor George Haga and Sand Lake Village Trustee Roger Towsley also took the oath of office.  They represent the first two communities to join GVMC since 2007. The Board of Directors also recently approved accepting Lowell Township as a member. 

The GVMC is in charge of coordinating development and governmental affairs across municipalities.