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grand rapids city commission

1950s grand rapids
User: Don...The UpNorth Memories Guy... Harrison / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

 


This week marks the 51st anniversary of the riots that broke out in Michigan during the summer of 1967.

While the uprising in Detroit is the most well known, Grand Rapids faced a similar event, albeit on a smaller scale. The city had three days of unrest that left 44 people hurt and 350 arrested.

Ellen James is a founding member of the Grand Rapids Community College Board of Trustees and a leader in Grand Rapid’s African-American community. Tavian Moore is the president of the Greater Grand Rapids NAACP Youth Council.

Medical marijuana sign
Neeta Lind / Flickr - http://j.mp/1spglc0

The city of Grand Rapids has voted to allow medical marijuana facilities.

The city commission unanimously voted to amend a zoning ordinance that will allow medical marijuana facilities Tuesday night.

Mayor Rosalynn Bliss says it was important to get the business community’s opinion on the ordinance.

“But also making sure that we were including neighborhood voice in that decision,” Bliss said.

Nathaniel Moody (left) standing next to the Grand Rapids city clerk
Bryce Huffman / Michigan Radio

Grand Rapids appointed a new city commissioner a bit earlier than expected.

Pastor Nathaniel Moody was unanimously voted third ward commissioner in a surprise move at Tuesday night’s commission meeting.

The vote was supposed to take place next week, but after a lengthy discussion about the city’s recently passed marijuana ordinance, the commission decided to vote in Moody.

Moody said he was surprised by the early vote, but plans to continue building on the commission's work.

Downtown Grand Rapids
Grguy2011 / Public Domain

Some community members will have a say in who fills vacant city commission seat in Grand Rapids.

The Third Ward city commission seat was held by David Allen until he resigned last month. Allen is focusing on his job at the Kent County Land Bank.

There are ten finalists for the empty Third Ward city commission seat. A subcommittee of residents, business owners and current commissioners will interview them at city hall tomorrow from 4:00 to 6:30 p.m.  

For Rent sign
Kurt Bauschardt / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

The city of Grand Rapids has a proposed ordinance that aims to protect renters from predatory landlords.

But residents at a public hearing during a city commission meeting last night don’t think the ordinance is harsh enough on bad landlords.

The ordinance would fine landlords $50 for not returning application fees to prospects who were rejected. Each additional infraction would increase the amount landlords must pay.

house for sale in Grand Rapids
Lindsey Smith / Michigan Radio

Grand Rapids continues to be one of the hottest real estate markets in the country. Homes or apartments are particularly hard to find for low to moderate income residents. 

This week the Grand Rapids City Commission took steps to improve affordable housing when it unanimously approved four policy recommendations from the Housing Advisory Committee. It's one step in a longer process to help alleviate the problem.

Interim City Manager Eric DeLong says the policies were developed to benefit both private and public interests.