Ambulance issue still up in the air

Published 12:05 pm Thursday, January 20, 2005

By By NORMA LERNER / Edwardsburg Argus
EDWARDSBURG - Village President James Robinson told his council he attended a three-hour meeting attended by representatives from LaGrange, Penn, Jefferson and Calvin townships and the villages of Cassopolis and Vandalia regarding Edwardsburg Ambulance Service's bid to become the Cassopolis area service provider.
Representatives from the Southwestern Michigan Community Ambulance Service (SMCAS), which submitted a bid that the Cassopolis Ambulance Board accepted, also attended, but the suitation is still up in the air.
Robinson said he got a feeling that Cassopolis wants advanced life support service now. He said Edwardsburg is not advanced life support but is in the process of becoming a conditional advanced life support.
Robinson said there is another meeting Feb. 5, and next month more should be known.
The Edwardsburg Village Council got a surprise visit Monday night during its regular meeting by Miss Edwardsburg and her court. The royalties were introduced by Miss Edwardsburg Chairwoman Tamara Boyer.
The council members were pleased with the visit and were invited to the Blossomtime Keys to the Cities Mayors' banquet at 5 p.m. on May 3 at Pebblewood Country Club in Bridgman. Boyer asked that a representative from the village attend the event.
Boyer also asked the council members to attend the Miss Blossomtime Pageant March 7 beginning at 7 p.m. at Lake Michigan College Mendel Center in Benton Township.
The council also learned that according to Public Act 292 and 294 of 2004 there is a change in the term of office of the village officers and council to comply with "Consolidated Elections." This means that the village must fill its elective officers at the even-year November general election and as of Dec. 31, 2004, all village elections will be administered by the Ontwa Township clerk at the Ontwa Township hall.
Current council officers and members must conform with the newly established election dates extended to November, 2006.
The council unanimously adopted a resolution pertaining to the act. Clerk Bernadine Tilbury explained council members' terms due to expire in March, 2006, will instead expire in November. They are four-year terms. She said the state wants everyone to use machines to vote instead of paper ballots. She said the township has the machines, and school elections will be held there too.
Council members also discussed the possibility of posting hours of no parking at the municipal parking lot on U.S. 12 next to the fire station. Trustee Jacque Tighe said she got a call that the snowplow put snow behind five or six cars parked there, and residents wanted her to personally dig them out. She said that snowplow driver John Monaghan cannot get his truck through the parking lot with the plow with the cars parked there. She said behind the barber shop is an apartment, and those residents are parking in the lot. She told them where their parking is located.
Trustee Scott Mackling commented that the residents have been told. He said if they get buried, it's up to them as they know they can park there during the day but not at night.
Trustee Lana Eash will contact Monaghan about it and come up with a solution. Currently the sign posted says no truck or overnight parking on the lot.
In a related matter, the council will propose a policy of mailbox replacement if there is damage from snow removal.
During public comments, resident George Streeter who owns property on Section Street questioned if the council has done anything about the drainage ditch along Section Street that continues to drain water on his property. He maintained that the water comes from the school property, and the school should take care of it.
Robinson responded that the school claims it doesn't come from the school property. He said he received an estimate of $9,000 to construct and engineer a change to the ditch. He said the village doesn't have $9,000 to do this. Streeter said he will bring it up at the next planning meeting.
It was reported seven arrests were made in the township for December and none in the village. There were 187 complaints and 98 incidents reported in the village.