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My Town: Health Department seeing increase in illegal "scratchers"

My Town: Health Department seeing increase in illegal "scratchers"

---NEWS RELEASE----

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (Kent County Health Department)-- Tattoos, piercings and other forms of body art continue to grow in popularity. There are many reputable artists operating businesses across the state. Unfortunately, there are some who try to circumvent the system, operating in illegal locations with little or no training. The Kent County Health Department urges everyone to think about potential consequences, and get the work done in a legal, licensed location.

My Town: Congressional candidates to hold public forums

My Town: Congressional candidates to hold public forums

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—Two men running to represent West Michigan in Congress have agreed to hold public forums.

Congressman Justin Amash and his Democratic contender, businessman Bob Goodrich met over coffee in Eastown Aug. 15.  During the brief meeting, both candidates discussed ideas on how best to keep the race for the 3rd Congressional seat civil.

Amash beat East Grand Rapids businessman Brian Ellis by roughly a 14-percent margin during August’s primary. Voters will decide if Amash will continue to represent them during the general election Nov. 4.  The Third Congressional District of Michigan includes the areas of  Grand Rapids, Cascade Township, Alpine Township, East Grand Rapids, Belding, Lowell, Plainfield Township, Rockford and Sparta.

My Town: Michigan Works employment support center closing Aug. 21

My Town: Michigan Works employment support center closing Aug. 21

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—Michigan Works is closing its service center in My Town Grand Rapids North.

The facility at 1560 Leonard NE will shut down at 6 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 21.  Michigan Works says a new service center opening in the Westside Complex, at 215 Straight Ave. NW, will provide limited services beginning at 8 a.m. Friday Aug. 22.  The new facility will begin offering a full array of free employment support services beginning Thursday, Aug. 28.

The facility changes are part of Michigan Works restructuring plan.

“The Service Center relocation will reduce our overhead costs substantially,” said Jacob Maas, executive director for ACSET. “That’s in addition to an anticipated $1 million savings due to a recent change to our service delivery model. That’s money that will be invested directly into our employment and training programs. As federal funding decreases, we are tasked with being more creative and flexible.”

Inside the August Primary: The close calls and votes cast

Inside the August Primary: The close calls and votes cast

LANSING, Mich.-- Fewer voters cast their ballots Tuesday than when Governor Rick Snyder was elected.

That's according to Fred Woodhams, spokesman for the Secretary of State's Office.  Woodhams says 1.3 million Michiganders visited the polls during the primary, accounting for approximately 20.3 percent of active voters. Active voters are defined by the Secretary of State as people who have voted within the last six years. Woodhams says approximately 17.9 percent of registered Michigan voters cast a ballot Tuesday, but that number may be skewed because people who have moved out of the state may still be registered to vote in Michigan.

My Town: Voters to decide key issues during Aug. 5 election

My Town: Voters to decide key issues during Aug. 5 election

Voters across West Michigan are expected to head to the polls Tuesday, Aug. 5 to decide some key issues and races.

Proposal 1 would alter Michigan’s tax infrastructure by eliminating equipment taxes for businesses that already pay taxes every year.  A portion of sales tax revenue that goes to the state treasury would be reallocated to local governments to cover the tax revenue loss.  Plainfield Township Superintendent Cameron Van Wyngarden says the ballot measure would make Michigan more economically competitive with other states.

My Town: Tax-funded street improvements begin in Grand Rapids

My Town: Tax-funded street improvements begin in Grand Rapids

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—The first of more than 50 street projects funded by a recent voter-approved tax renewal will begin Friday.

The city commission has approved two contracts for more than $4.2 million in road repairs.  Contractors will begin grinding down and resurfacing Buckley Street from LaGrave Avenue to Jefferson Avenue and Lafayette Avenue from Pleasant Street to Wealthy Street on July 25.  Those projects are expected to wrap up Aug. 6, with a ribbon cutting ceremony at the corner of Buckley Street and Jefferson Avenue scheduled for Aug. 7 at 11 a.m.  The remaining street project schedule is as follows:

 

 Sheldon Avenue

Sycamore Street to Haifley Place

Aug. 4 – Aug. 13

Sheldon Avenue

My Town: Health phone survey in Kent County largest of its kind in the world

My Town: Health phone survey in Kent County largest of its kind in the world

GRAND RAPIDS – Starting this week, people in Kent County will be receiving letters and phone calls asking families to take part in the 2014 Behavior Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS).

This health survey is the largest-conducted telephone survey in the world. The survey will help the KCHD and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to track critical health issues, as well as creating and evaluating public health programs in Kent County. Issues and Answers, a phone marketing research firm, will be conducting the survey on behalf of the Kent County Health Department (KCHD).