Richard Godfrey, Chairman of the Van Buren County Board of Commissioners, told me, "Basically all of the structures are old and they are outdated and they need major renovation."
County commissioners agree there is a real need to bring these facilities up to today's standards.
The construction project discussion isn't new. A Courier-Leader story from December, 2016 provides some background. In the article, past-Commissioner John Henry says too that the facility is outdated.
Godfrey also pointed to a problem in the county court house design that needs to be fixed. "The historic court house, you know, it was fine when it was built in 1902 and served the population well at that time, but we have ten times as many people and the times have changed so that we don't like to co-mingle our population with the prisoners as they go into the court room and situations like that need to be remedied so that we don't have any potential problems -- any disasters, actually -- occur when we have prisoners and the public intersecting in our hallways," he said.
I have been a beekeeper on and off over the last ten years. I am always looking to learn more from others' experiences. I have not found a steady resource in our county, but I have noticed that the Kalamazoo Beekeepers are a growing organization. A few years ago I attended their annual Bee School, a day of seminars. It was held in a church. This year I attended and it was at Kalamazoo Valley Community College. Although there were courses for the beginner, I was able to attend sessions on queen and nucleus production.
Your Comments If you are interested in learning by doing, once the season gets started there are apiary days at the club's apiary in Kalamazoo. Monthly meetings always have interesting speakers. For more information, check out their website at www.kalamazoobeeclub.com.