The Three Rivers City Commission Tuesday held the first of two scheduled public hearings to discuss proposed amendments to the city code that would allow marijuana facilities within city limits as special exception uses, and get further public input on the matter. Following a lengthy discussion and public comments from a handful of citizens, a thin majority of commissioners expressed support for the proposed changes.

Glen Oaks Community College will hold its 52nd and 53rd Annual Commencement ceremony at 7 p.m. on Friday, May 7, in Ken Schuler Court (Glen Oaks gymnasium). The Nursing Pinning ceremony will be held on Saturday, May 8 at 10 a.m. and the Allied Health pinning ceremony will be held on Saturday, May 8 at 2 p.m. with both pinning ceremonies also taking place in the gym.

Helen McCauslin writes, “Our newspapers are filled these days with the news of the surge in Coronavirus cases requiring hospitalizations in local Michigan institutions. Three Rivers Health, the Branch-Hillsdale-St. Joseph Community Health Agency, and pharmacies are working daily to test and vaccinate against this evolving virus. Just a little over 100 years ago we faced a similar challenge in the Flu Epidemic of 1918. How prepared were we to care for the sick then?”

Over the last two years, under the leadership of Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and former Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Director Robert Gordon, Michigan made it easier to get and keep important benefits. The state now provides additional resources to low-income individuals, seeks to treat residents with respect and has reduced pointless complexity. Many challenges remain and the department’s new leader, Elizabeth Hertel, has an opportunity to accelerate these improvements.

WSV’s Amy East writes, “Two years ago when we bought our place in beautiful Cass County, I dove into the county’s and my own family’s history, discovering that my ties to the area went deeper than I’d known. There is a richness to the county’s intertwined Potawatomi, European, and African American history that I’d never learned in school, or maybe never appreciated.

“Earlier this year, the Cass County Board of Commissioners saw fit to appoint me to the Historical Commission. As part of the publications committee, I’ll be editing and updating books that share our history with anyone who cares to read about it. Will there be an opportunity for more archaeology, maybe here at home? I’d like to think so, I hope so. There are many, many questions to be answered and stories to be told. Give me a couple years and we’ll see what I can do.”

Inforum Michigan, a leading women’s organization, was recently holding a virtual information session to discuss the issue of sexual assault when Kalimah Johnson happened to stumble on the conversation via social media.

Given that April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month and Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy, who is African American, was a featured guest, Johnson was interested in the presentation since she counsels sexual assault victims. So she stopped to check it out. Worthy provided her perspective and shared her efforts to bring justice to victims, but only four of the 14 women serving as ambassadors were Black.