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Recall effort launched in Alma after migrant housing vote

Recall effort launched in Alma after migrant housing vote
Recall effort launched in Alma after migrant housing vote
Published: Sep. 20, 2021 at 2:05 PM EDT
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ALMA, Mich. (AP) - Three officials in the mid-Michigan community of Alma are being targeted for recall after voting in favor of a zoning change that would allow housing for migrant boys who crossed the U.S. border.

Petitions were filed against Alma city commissioners Roxann Herrington, Audra Stahl and Nick Piccolo. If the language is approved, recall advocates could start collecting signatures to try to force an election.

The commission voted 4-2 in favor of approving a rezoning request sought by Bethany Christian Services. Chuck Murphy is a recall supporter and chairman of the Gratiot County Republican Party. He says many people in Alma are upset.

The project in Alma would house those unaccompanied teens while looking for relatives in the U.S. to take them in. Bethany Christian Services wants to use a former nursing home to provide housing for up to 40 days or until a sponsor can be found. The boys are ages 12 to 17.

Alma City Manager, Matt Schooley, said that by the next city commission meeting, a formal ordinance will be drafted and the rezoning will take place.

He said that from the city’s standpoint, once that happens and pending any other legal review, the city’s role will be complete and the shelter can move forward.

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