Local news produced by our reporters here at WMUK


Students at Gull Lake Community Schools can expect to see a sheriff’s deputy around their classrooms this school year. On Tuesday the Kalamazoo County Board of Commissioners approved plans to post the officer to the district.

In Kalamazoo County, nonwhite infants continue to have one of the highest death rates in the state. A task force that has studied the issue says it won’t be solved overnight, but it hopes the number of deaths can be significantly cut by 2020, members told the Kalamazoo County Board of Commissioners on Tuesday.

Right now infants of color in Kalamazoo County have one of the highest mortality rates in Michigan, about four times the rate for white babies. Wealthy families face an elevated risk as well as impoverished ones.

Sehvilla Mann / WMUK

An unusual proposal to fix Kalamazoo’s budget might be too big to fit into regular meeting times. On Monday commissioners said they’d consider adding extra discussions in the hours before its regular meetings to talk about the plan.

The commission is considering whether to accept a $70 million private donation that would shore up Kalamazoo’s finances for three years – and whether to try to create a permanent endowment for the city.

Sehvilla Mann / WMUK

The City of Kalamazoo has taken a decisive step toward building a non-motor path downtown.

On Monday commissioners approved construction contracts to extend the Kalamazoo River Valley Trail. The new path would close the approximately one-mile gap between the KRVT’s east and west trailheads.

Bill Bouton

Last week, the Kalamazoo Nature Center released 18 rare butterfly caterpillars. The Mitchell’s Satyr butterfly is a nationally endangered species. There are only 11 groups of the butterfly left in the entire United States. The Mitchell’s Satyr has been called a “canary in a coal mine” for America’s wetlands.