September 2023 Edition

Greetings from the Mayor's Office

This past week we were reminded of what makes Walker and surrounding areas a special place to live, work, and grow. As we have several times over the years, we had part of our City impacted by the tornado and high winds that came through West Michigan. While the impact was more pronounced in the northern part of our City, the damage was significant. Less than 10 minutes after the confirmed tornado touched down, our teams from the City including our Fire, Police, Public Works, and Engineering Departments were either all on scene, or en route.

While we try our best to plan for weather events like this, sometimes we do not know what we have to do until we are on scene. When it was safe, crews quickly removed limbs and trees from the road. We received help from our mutual aid partners in public safety. They staffed two of our fire stations while we dealt with downed wires and tackled a structure fire. We were also able to help our neighboring communities that were hit much harder.

In addition to our City staff and neighboring partners, the attention we received from Consumers Energy and the many workers brought in from other areas and states was greatly appreciated. Over the weekend, crews restored power and all roads were open. A special shout-out to our team at the City, who not only opened the public works yard for storm debris drop-off but got out to some of the more affected neighborhoods to pick up brush and limbs.

One of the best stories was that of a contractor scheduled to do some road work in Alpine Estates on Friday. Because of the storm's aftermath, they couldn't do the work that day. Instead, they brought their crews and equipment and helped our City clean up from the storm. The project was still completed this week, yet they brought that roll up your sleeves and get the work done attitude that Walker is known for. It was hard to keep track of the number of stories like this, with neighbors grabbing chainsaws and other tools to help each other out. Yet, every one of them was special on their own merits.

This month, I believe it is appropriate that my message be a simple one of gratitude for all these stories and those we might not have heard about. My wish is that they resonate with you like they did with me and give us pause to reflect on all that we are blessed with.

As always, thank you for deciding to call Walker home.

Mayor Gary Carey, Jr.

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Upcoming Events

Walker Pumpkin Bash

Saturday, September 30 | 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Join us outside the Walker City Complex for an afternoon of fall family fun. Free pumpkins for the first 1,250 kids ages 12 and under, trick or treating, pumpkin decorating, live animals, a magic show, and more. Don't forget your costumes! Presented by the City of Walker, Walker Ice & Fitness Center, and Kent District Library Walker Branch. For All Ages.

Improvements Around Walker

Rapid Bus Route Expansion

Great news for those who work in and around Walker's Industrial district! The Rapid has expanded services by adding coverage to Rapid Connect and Route 33

Click here to view those changes.

Kinney Remembrance Traffic Signal

Construction will soon begin on the traffic signal replacement project at the intersection of Remembrance Rd and Kinney Ave. There will be a project open house on Monday, September 11. It takes place from 4:30 - 5:30 p.m. at Walker City Hall inside the City Commission Chambers. Please stop by to ask questions and learn more about this exciting project!

Report Your Near-Miss

Have you experienced a “near-miss” incident or seen repeated traffic safety issues at a certain location? Report it anonymously and help the Grand Valley Metropolitan Council understand traffic safety issues throughout Kent and Ottawa counties.

Click here to access the tool.

Police Department Updates

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What an eventful few weeks around Walker. Walker PD is wrapping up Field Training for two new hires, hoping to hire a few more (MCOLES certifiable candidates please apply online), we attended several “end of summer” community events and then endured a mini heat wave and a tornado. It has been all hands on deck for a wide variety of reasons!

On that note, Walker PD, Walker Fire, and Walker DPW spent a couple of days responding to storm-related calls and helping with storm cleanup. There were many downed power lines entangled in blown-over trees which created dangerous conditions. Your attention to letting the professionals work on those issues was greatly appreciated.

School is back in session and that means school buses are back out in force. Remember to give yourself extra time for your morning and afternoon commutes, as you very likely will encounter a bus stopping at some point. Let’s review the three types of flashers you could see on a school bus.

Amber/Yellow Overheads: The Bus is preparing to stop, you should too.

Red Overheads: The Bus is actively picking up/dropping off students. You MUST stop as well. Be sure to give plenty of room so students can cross safely.

Hazard Lights (near the brake lights): The bus is pulled over and signaling that backed-up traffic may proceed with caution. These are different than the amber overhead lights.

In a nutshell, if the overheads are flashing, don’t be passing!

Attempt to Identify

Finally, Walker PD is still seeking information regarding a crash where a dark-colored Ford Transit van fled the scene after striking/injuring a motorcyclist. The van would likely have damage on the passenger side and may be missing a door handle. Any tips about the crash can be called into our Tip Line at (616) 791-6788.

To keep up on department news, safety tips, and police-related humor, follow us on Facebook by liking “City of Walker Police Department-Michigan.”

Fire Department Updates

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Disposing Prescription and Over-the-Counter Medicine

Did you know? An estimated 20%-60% of prescription medications go unused. Improperly disposing of medications by flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash represents an emerging concern for the environment and public health. So, what should you do with unwanted prescription medicine? Click here for info:

Income Tax Department Updates

Due Dates

Third quarter estimated payments for calendar year 2023 are due October 2, 2023. Forms are available on our website.

Missing Information

Did you receive a request for information related to your 2022 Walker income tax return? If we did not receive the information upon request from the taxpayer, deductions and credits will be disallowed resulting in a lower refund or assessment. If you were expecting a refund, but have received a proposed assessment or reduced refund, there is still time to provide the required information. You must send us proof of the credit/deduction within 30 days of the date you received the notice that we adjusted your return. If you’re not sure what we need, please email us or call (616) 791-6880.

Forgotten Returns

If you have past years of Walker returns that you have forgotten to file, contact the tax department immediately at (616) 791-6880. If you file prior year returns and pay the tax and interest due, you may request a waiver of penalty. If the tax department contacts you first regarding unfiled returns, you will not be eligible for a waiver of penalty. We are electronically matching State of Michigan returns filed from a Walker resident address with Walker returns filed. If you have forgotten to file Walker returns from prior years, now is the time to get that cleared up before the letters go out from this matching program.


If you are not sure if you need to file Walker Income Tax returns, the most common questions are answered on our website. You can also call us at (616) 791-6880.

Walker Ice and Fitness News

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Monday - Friday: 5 am - 9 pm

Weekends: 7 am - 5 pm

Parks and Recreation

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KDL Walker Branch

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Fall Programs

All our weekly Storytimes and Babytimes are back!

Visit our Events page for more information.

Kent District Library to Ask Voters for Millage Renewal at Lower Rate

After unanimous approval from its board of trustees, Kent District Library will ask voters this fall to consider a millage renewal at a reduced rate to fund its operations for 15 years. Click here to learn more.

Free Faxing and Scanning

Did you know that the library offers free faxing and scanning services? In addition to faxing documents, you can upload documents to your email, a Google Drive/One Drive, USB, or even your phone with our easy-to-use, high speed ScanEZ Station. The scanners also offer text translation and a text-to-audio feature. And of course, our staff is always happy to help you through the process!