Ionia County Board of Commissioners

Ionia County commissioners approve demo of former Friend of the Court building

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Four years after it was vacated, it appears the fate of the former Ionia County Friend of the Court building has been decided after much deliberation.

The Ionia Board of Commissioners on June 14 voted unanimously to approve asbestos abatement and demolition of the structure at 108 W. Washington St.

Ionia County commissioners approve $11 million worth of ARPA-funded projects

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An estimated $2.5 million worth of upgrades to the Sheriff’s Office/Jail, $1 million worth of new equipment for the Road Department, a $1 million courthouse facade project, a $600,000 upgrade to communication towers to support the use of 800 megahertz radios by county fire departments …

These are just a few of the $11 million worth of planned projects to be funded with American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) dollars as approved by the Ionia County Board of Commissioners on Tuesday. The vote was 6-0 with Commissioner Scott Wirtz absent.

Ionia County commissioners to hire firm to handle administrator search

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As the Ionia County Board of Commissioners continue to rethink the administrator and finance director positions following the March resignations of both, commissioners agreed the best course of action was to seek assistance with the search process.

At their Tuesday meeting, commissions asked interim Administrator Jason Eppler to solicit a proposal and prices from the Michigan Municipal League to conduct a search for a county administrator, rather than ask the board’s personnel committee to develop a framework for the process. Commissioners Karen Banks and Scott Wirtz were both absent from Tuesday’s meeting.

Ionia board OKs animal shelter surrender fee hike

The Ionia County Board of Commissioners on Tuesday approved a proposal by the Animal Care and Control director to raise surrender fees to help cover rising costs of preparing animals for adoption.

Director Carly Quinn told commissioners that the price increase is something she has wanted to do since she started in her position, as the cost of $5 to surrender an animal to the animal shelter hasn’t changed in at least 10 years.

Candidates file for state, county, township elections

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Four incumbents on the Montcalm County Board of Commissioners will be running against each other this year due to newly redrawn districts, while three incumbents on the Ionia County Board of Commissioners are being challenged by members of their own political party.

Meanwhile, a Montcalm County state senator is being primaried, while an Ionia County judge has filed to run for a seat on the Michigan Court of Appeals.

Ionia County BOC approves health department requests

The Ionia County Board of Commissioners on Tuesday approved three requests for its Health Department.

Aimee Keefer, public health director, introduced the requests and answered questions in the absence of Health Officer Ken Bowen.

Ionia County commissioners approve employee COVID-19 hazard payouts

A plan to provide COVID-19 hazard pay to Ionia County employees using American Rescue Fund Act monies was approved Tuesday evening in a 4-1 vote by commissioners.

The plan has been more than four months in the making.

Ionia County board moves forward after resignations

The first meeting of the Ionia County Board of Commissioners since the sudden resignations of Administrator Stephanie Fox and Director of Finance Linda Pigue last week drew almost a full house inside the commissioner boardroom on Tuesday. Up to 70 people logged into the meeting on Zoom as well.

Fox and Pigue resigned on March 2 after the county’s Personnel Committee overturned Fox’s firing of Road Department Superintendent Bud White, and reinstated him with back pay and benefits. 

TEN QUESTIONS: Public servant, not politician

Who are you? David Hodges, lifelong resident of the Belding area, Army veteran, Ionia County commissioner for District 1 (Otisco Township, the city of Belding and Orleans Township) and chairman of the county board.

Personnel Committee meets on Ionia County employee firing

Daily News attempted to cover meeting but was not notified

A longtime Ionia County employee fired by the county administrator had his “day in court” last Friday, appearing before the Ionia County Board of Commissioners Personnel Committee to appeal his firing.

The county had an attorney present; however Bud White said he was never told that was an option and he appeared before the committee without legal representation.