TEN QUESTIONS: Engineer, car guy

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Who are you? Jim Barrus of Greenville. Mayor pro tem for the city of Greenville. Validation engineer and finance officer at ADAC Automotive.

Developments, changes in leadership and tragic events lead top local news stories of 2022

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Here’s a look at some of the other top local news stories of the year, from housing to new businesses to marijuana to court cases.

Developer offers new proposal for Greenville’s Forest View subdivision

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A new housing development proposed in the north end of the city could bring about a revitalization of a subdivision that was once planned to be filled with more than 300 housing units. 

Eighteen years ago, developer Alden Nash Properties of Grand Rapids purchased a 56-acre site located on the northern boundary of Greenville West Drive, previously owned by the city of Greenville, with a plan to construct a total of 96 buildings.

The invisible population: Shining a light on homeless youth

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When the word “housing” comes to the forefront, the direction a conversation can go will likely head in one of several specific routes. 

Is it a buyer or seller’s market? Should one rent or own? Where can one find affordable housing? 

However, for Esther Combs of the Alternative Counseling Center in Stanton, the subject of housing is looked at through a completely different lens — the absence of a home altogether. 

Addressing a ‘multi-faceted’ affordable housing problem

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Multiple issues over several years have led to current affordable housing crisis, pricing out ALICE families from renting or purchasing homes

For those who may find themselves frustrated if currently searching for an affordable home, there’s one sentiment that, while it doesn’t provide a solution, it may deliver a small sense of comfort — you are not alone. 

That’s the message Luke Forest, executive director of the Community Economic Development Association of Michigan, delivered at the United Way Community Leadership Conference earlier this year. 

‘A done deal’

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Reynolds Township special land use request for apartments stands approved as recommended

A special use permit for a development of apartments just outside of Howard City will stand approved as recommended by the Reynolds Township Planning Commission.

The Planning Commission met on April 28 and voted 4-2 to recommend the township board approve a special use permit requested by business partners Ryan Pitcher of Lakeview and Jon Cole of Cedar Springs.

‘This area is going to keep growing’

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Business duo looking to add 44 new apartments just outside of Howard City

The Reynolds Township Planning Commission in a split vote last week approved recommending a special use permit to allow the construction of 11 quadplex buildings just outside of Howard City.

Last Thursday’s public hearing was held in a very informal manner — residents were allowed to speak as long as they wanted to without identifying themselves, multiple people spoke at the same time and often went off-topic and the Daily News at one point asked the Planning Commission to restore some sort of order so that deliberations could be overheard.

‘Out of alignment’

Lack of housing, increased demand for workers leading to potential ‘bottleneck’ of growth in communities

Twenty-five years ago, when buying a house for the first time, Randy Thelen and his wife Christa were determined to do things the “right way” — to find a price that worked for them, in a location that would make them happy.

The newlyweds, ready to move on from renting an apartment, began their search in West Michigan, searching for that ideal spot to call home.

Montcalm, Ionia households struggling on ‘bare-bones’ budgets have become ‘rent-burdened’ due to flat wages, rising costs

When addressing the issue of affordable housing, one element of that crisis can be identified through a specific demographic of people — ALICE.

ALICE is an acronym used to identify those who are “Asset Limited Income Constrained and Employed.”

‘The path of affordable housing’

United Way Montcalm-Ionia Counties ‘tackling’ issue of affordable housing

In her rounds across both Montcalm and Ionia counties, Terri Legg has conversed with more employers, legislators, community leaders and organizations than perhaps any other figurehead in the area.

In her six years as the executive director of United Way Montcalm-Ionia counties, it’s been Legg’s mission to transform the organization from what was best described as a fundraiser, to now being a convener, mobilizer and agent for community change.