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My Town: What 2015 will hold for West Michigan's economy

My Town: What 2015 will hold for West Michigan's economy

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.--- Consumers in West Michigan are more optimistic about what 2015 will bring.

In fact, consumers in this market are the most optimistic in the region, according to a new study released by Huntington Bank.  The financial firm found local residents say they are much more likely to buy a new vehicle this year; 17 percent said they plan to purchase a new car, compared to just four percent in 2014.

Home improvement stores may also be busy; 47-percent of West Michiganders surveyed for the Huntington Bank Midwest Economic Index said they were planning some home renovations for 2015, compared to 32 percent in 2014.

My Town: Thirteen local lawmakers post perfect voting record for 2014

My Town: Thirteen local lawmakers post perfect voting record for 2014

LANSING, Mich.—State Sen. Mark Jansen tops the list of West Michigan lawmakers who missed the most votes this year, according to the Missed Votes Report compiled by Jack McHugh, editor of MichiganVotes.org.

Jansen missed 46 votes between January and December of this year. The District 28 Republican represents a large portion of Kent County, including Ada, Algoma, Alpine, Cannon, Courtland, Grand Rapids and Plainfield townships, as well as East Grand Rapids, Rockford, Walker and Wyoming.

State Rep. Jon Bumstead, who represents Newaygo, Lake and Oceana counties, had the most missed votes among West Michigan lawmakers in the House, with 21 this year.  

Three senators and three representatives missed 50 or more votes this year.  The top offenders were Rep. John Olumba of Detroit, with 233 missed votes, and Sen. Bert Johnson of Detroit, with 187 missed votes.

My Town: New legislation to save parents time and money

My Town: New legislation to save parents time and money

WYOMING, Mich.—New legislation is now in place to save families time and money when it comes to paternity cases and child support payments.

Governor Snyder recently signed a set of 13 bills that streamlines the state system.  Legislation sponsors included Tom Hooker, who represents Wyoming; Roger Victory, who represents Coopersville, Georgetown Township and Polkton Township; Rick Outman, who represents Greenville; and Marcia Hovey-Wright, who represents Whitehall Township, Muskegon and Muskegon Heights.  The reforms include:

Establishing that a positive genetic test is a conclusive method of determining paternity, if certain conditions are met and without requiring a court determination (House Bill 5463, sponsored by Denby and HB 5464 sponsored by Hooker);

Township clerk quitting over toxic work environment


Allendale Twp., MI (WZZM) - Allendale Township clerk Candy Kraker says the work environment is so toxic at the Allendale Township hall she is retiring at the end of the month.

She was first elected in 1988.

"
26 years,
"
she confirms.
"
I
'
m worn out. This is a toxic environment to work in.
"

Coopersville crash sends two to hospital


COOPERSVILLE, Mich. (WZZM)—Ottawa County Sheriff's deputies are investigating a crash that sent two Coopersville residents to the hospital, including a 9-year-old girl.

The crash happened around 4:15 p.m. at West Randall and Eastmanville streets in Coopersville. Sgt. Kevin Allman says Benjamin Nobert, 36 was heading south on Eastmanville Street when he stopped at the intersection then continued on, driving into the path of a vehicle on West Randall Street. The oncoming vehicle smashed into the driver's side, seriously injuring Nobert. His passenger, 9-year-old Maddi Nobert, suffered minor injuries. They were both taken to a nearby hospital for treatment.

The other driver, 72-year-old James Arends, was not injured in the crash.


My Town Coopersville: Teenager seriously injured in crash returns home

My Town Coopersville: Teenager seriously injured in crash returns home

COOPERSVILLE, Mich.—A Coopersville teenager who was seriously injured in a crash when his seat belt failed, is back home for the holidays.

Jordan Kuperus, 18, was released from the hospital two weeks after the crash at 80th Avenue near State Road in Polkton Township.  Deputies say Kuperus’ vehicle rolled through a stop sign and hit another car.  Upon impact, Kuperus’ seat belt tore and he was thrown from his vehicle.

Emergency responders said Kuperus was in and out of consciousness as he was taken to the hospital.  According to his care page on Facebook, Kuperus suffered many broken bones and had a torn aorta.  After undergoing surgery and therapy, Kuperus was cleared to go home Dec. 11. His father says Jordan has a new nickname: miracle man. 

Son charged in Coopersville woman's murder


COOPERSVILLE, Mich. (WZZM) - The son of a Coopersville woman whose body was found in the Grand River has been charged with her murder.

Sharon Roersma, 72, was found in the Grand River on September 29. Her son, Michael Roersma, 50, admitted at the time to putting her body in the river.

Thursday, the Ottawa County Prosecutor authorized a warrant on Open Murder against Michael Roersma in his mother's death. Michael had been in custody since the discovery on charges of Lying to Police, Obstructing Police, and a probation violation.

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Court docs: Man admits to putting mother's body in river