Benton Harbor

Golfers put on a practice green in front of a clubhouse building
Jennifer Weingart

 

The events around the Senior PGA tournament tee’d off in Benton Harbor Tuesday.

 

The tournament is about golf, obviously, 156 players start official rounds on Thursday. There’s also the pro-am rounds Tuesday where some of the professional players go through the course with amateurs with ties to the title sponsor KitchenAid.

But off the fairway there are cooking and product demos by KitchenAid, concerts, a kids space and tastings from local wineries and breweries.

Championship Director Ryan Ogle.

 

The Orchards Mall in Benton Harbor is gaining new tenants under new management, while still apparently struggling to keep up with taxes and maintenance.

The Orchards Mall is losing one of it’s two remaining anchor stores. Carson’s will leave in the next few months, leaving just J.C. Penney.

The mall just paid its tax bill for 2015, the parking lot is riddled with potholes and visually the mall looks stuck in the 90s. Malls in general have been on the decline since shopping went online.

 

A group of Benton Harbor community leaders are meeting Thursday evening to discuss problems facing the city’s youth and possible solutions.

 

The group calls itself the Benton Harbor Area Schools Safety Coalition. This will be its first meeting.

 

The stated purpose is to respond to the-quote- “rising behaviors exhibited by children within the community.”

 

Benton Harbor Area Schools

 

After nine months of a partnership agreement between the State of Michigan and Benton Harbor Area Schools, the results are largely positive. Academic scores are mostly up, but some benchmarks are still falling short.

 

 

Benton Harbor will implement a policy that allows property owners who live at or below the federal poverty level to apply for property tax relief.

 

The policy allows  a single homeowner making no more than $1,260 dollars a year  or families of up to 8 making $41,320 dollars annually to apply for a yearly property tax exemption.  
 

To apply, a single homeowner couldn’t have more than $35,000 in assets , while for a family of 8 the total would be $7,000.
 

Michigan Governor Rick Snyder has agreed with an official finding that the Benton Harbor school district in west Michigan is in a financial crisis. But the governor says he thinks the state can make an arrangement with the district that avoids a takeover.

“In Benton Harbor’s case, Benton Harbor schools, there’s a good possibility we could have a consent agreement. The school board seems very interested in that, the superintendent, so we’re working through that.”