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Contract with Teaching Assistants Union tops board June 7 agenda

Contract with Teaching Assistants Union tops board June 7 agenda

Meeting on Thursday, June 7, the Western Michigan University Board of Trustees is expected to consider approval of a new three-year contract with the University's Teaching Assistants Union.

Meeting at 11:30 a.m. in Rooms 157-159 of the Bernhard Center, the board will hear details of the contract that was negotiated during the winter and spring and ratified May 23 by members of TAU. 

During the meeting, board members also will consider approval of a property lease between the WMU School of Medicine and Borgess Health. The lease is to continue an ongoing initiative that houses the Kalamazoo Center for Medical Studies Psychiatric Clinic at Borgess. KCMS is merging into the WMU medical school July 1.

Also on the agenda are tenure and promotion recommendations for faculty members. The University administration is recommending that 19 faculty members receive tenure and 37 faculty members be promoted to the next highest faculty rank.

O'Brien invites residents, leaders to upcoming town hall

O'Brien invites residents, leaders to upcoming town hall

State Rep. Margaret O'Brien, R-Portage, will host an upcoming town hall event designed to answer questions and seek input on local government issues affected by state policy.

The town hall takes place from 5:30 to 7 p.m. on Thursday, May 17, at the Michigan Technical Education Center in the Groves of Kalamazoo Valley Community College. The center is located at 7107 Elm Valley Drive in Kalamazoo.

O'Brien has invited State Rep. Mark Ouimet, R-Ann Arbor, chair of the House Committee on Local, Intergovernmental and Regional Affairs.

"It's critical that state government maintain a productive dialogue with local governments and the residents for whom we all work," O'Brien said. "As a key committee chair, Rep. Ouimet graciously agreed to travel to our community and offer his expertise on the subject. I am grateful for his participation."

O'Brien said local feedback is invaluable to the work of the committee.

Kalamazoo Schools millage renewal passes

Kalamazoo Schools millage renewal passes

Voting took place throughout Michigan yesterday. In Kalamazoo, voters approved the renewal of the school millage.

The millage renewal passed 74% to 26%.

Click here to see additional election results from around West Michigan.

Kalamazoo's unemployment dropped in March

Kalamazoo's unemployment dropped in March

The unemployment rate dropped statewide in March, compared to February.  Across Michigan, the jobless rate fell to 9% from 9.4% the previous month. In Kalamazoo, the rate fell from 8% to 7.8%.

Here is a look at all of the regions across Michigan.

Chamber’s Legislative Connection Features Senator Debbie Stabenow April 12

Chamber’s Legislative Connection Features Senator Debbie Stabenow April 12

KALAMAZOO, MI—Join the Kalamazoo Regional Chamber of Commerce and Senator Debbie Stabenow for a morning discussion as part of the Chamber’s Legislative Connection Series this April 12, 7:30 to 9:00 a.m., held at the Girl Scouts Building, 601 W. Maple Street.
            
Senator Stabenow was elected to the United States Senate in 2000 and now serves as the Chair of the Senate Agriculture Committee and a member of the Senate Energy, Finance and Budget Committees.  Stabenow serves as Co-Chair of the bipartisan Senate Manufacturing Caucus and was appointed to the President’s Export Council by both President Bush and President Obama.

Health care reform assessed from employer's view in WMU talk

Health care reform assessed from employer's view in WMU talk

KALAMAZOO--A view of health care reform from the employer's perspective will come into sharper focus this month when a visiting health economics expert speaks at Western Michigan University as part of the Werner Sichel Lecture Series.

Anne Crumlish, a principal and health care actuary at Aon Hewitt's health care and benefits practice based in Atlanta, will speak at 3 p.m. Wednesday, April 11, in Room 2028 of Brown Hall. Her presentation, titled "Health Care Reform Legislation ... The Employer's Perspective," is free and open to the public.

Crumlish manages a wide range of consulting engagements related to broad health and welfare benefits with a focus on strategy, design and financial management of benefit programs. She is a key member of Aon Hewitt's national health care reform team, serving as a health care reform expert on compliance, financial and strategic issues for numerous clients across the country.

O'Brien measure seeks to preserve Farm Service Agency in Kalamazoo County

O'Brien measure seeks to preserve Farm Service Agency in Kalamazoo County

News Release:

            The Michigan House of Representatives today approved a resolution urging the U.S. Department of Agriculture not to close the Kalamazoo County Farm Service Agency, state Rep. Margaret O'Brien announced.

            Earlier this year, U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced his Blueprint for Stronger Services, which included the closure of 259 farm service agencies throughout the country. The Kalamazoo County office was chosen for closure, a decision which O'Brien says is ill-advised.

            "The Farm Service Agency is critically important to the needs of local farmers," said O'Brien, R-Portage.