Kalamazoo County

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Voters in Kalamazoo County have two Democratic candidates to choose from in the August 2 primary for county treasurer. The incumbent is Mary Balkema, a Republican with no primary opponent.

Sehvilla Mann / WMUK

Kalamazoo County officials are set to receive a course in public relations. On Tuesday commissioners agreed to hire a Portage-based firm, Rick Chambers and Associates to work with staff on how they talk about county business.

Employees will be trained on, in the proposal’s words, “what to communicate and how to communicate” as well as how to listen. Top-level administrators and elected officials are among those who will participate.

Sehvilla Mann / WMUK

Kalamazoo County intends to help fund a study of the law enforcement response to February’s mass shooting. The proposal passed 6-5 at a commission meeting Tuesday evening.

The county will pay about $30,000 – that’s roughly half the total cost - to commission an analysis of the crime from the DC-based nonprofit the Police Foundation.

Kalamazoo County will receive a $400,000 federal grant to help clean up its brownfield sites. Brownfields are former industrial or commercial lands often contaminated by hazardous waste - everything from old gas stations to former paper mills.

Sehvilla Mann / WMUK

The Kalamazoo County Commission has rejected a proposal to recognize a “gun violence awareness” day in June. The board was down two commissioners Tuesday when it took the vote. Five of the nine present did support the resolution. But the Board’s rules require six votes for a measure to pass.

The proposal called for “responsible gun ownership” and keeping guns “out of the wrong hands” while avoiding policy specifics.

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