Stateside Staff

Mark Schlissel
Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

This week marks the one year anniversary since Dr. Mark Schlissel became the University of Michigan’s 14th president.

He took over the job in a somewhat tumultuous time: complaints over high tuition costs, the university’s handling of sexual assaults, and an athletic department under heavy scrutiny.

A button promoting marijuana legalization.
Danny Birchall / Flickr -

Everything you ever wanted to know about marijuana in Michigan was discussed this week on Stateside.

From the politics - to the business - to the potential downsides.

We sat down with reporters, business owners, and law enforcement to learn more about the topic.

Here's a quick rundown of what we covered:

Today on Stateside:

flickr user bobdoran /

We’ve reviewed the movements pushing for marijuana legalization in Michigan, we’ve taken a look at how legal pot has treated Colorado, and we’ve heard the viewpoint of a medical marijuana caregiver in Ann Arbor.

Today, we get the law enforcement perspective.

Donald Trump speaks at the 2015 CPAC in Maryland
flickr user Gage Skidmore /

It's no secret that voters here in Michigan and across the country are angry and cynical about the notorious gridlock in Washington that has brought the country to its knees with budget showdowns.

It doesn't help that Michigan lawmakers have returned to their summer vacations without a deal to repair our decaying roads.

But as Detroit News business columnist Daniel Howes points out, the state House found time to devote to a sex scandal.

The Wolverine football program, with its famed winged helmet, has taken some lumps over the years.

This time a year ago, there was no scarcity of news coverage of the troubled University of Michigan football program, leading to the firing of athletic director Dave Brandon and coach Brady Hoke, and the eventual hiring of Jim Harbaugh as the new Wolverine coach.

Emojipedia /

The recent announcement that new emojis are coming to a keyboard near you in 2016 caught our attention. The emoji powers that be (and yes, that exists!) are now deciding which new ones will make it onto our keyboards next year.

Today on Stateside:

Boblo boat the SS Ste. Claire
flickr user PunkToad /

For 81 years, the majestic steamers the SS Columbia and the SS Ste. Claire took generations of Michiganders up and down the Detroit River to Boblo Island.

The hour-long river cruise to the amusement park was pure magic.

flickr user Dank Depot /

More than 50% of Michigan voters say in recent polls that they support marijuana legalization.

Two groups hope to put legalization proposals on the November 2016 ballot.

flickr user Thomas Hawk /

Almost six years ago, Michigan’s only women’s prison settled a huge lawsuit after officers raped multiple female inmates.

Changes have been made since then, but are they enough?

In 2011, the federal government opened the door to online lotteries when it lifted its ban on non-sports gambling. 

That action sent the Michigan Lottery down the cyber-path to online lottery games. With some 160,000 registered online players, it's still a small part of the state's lottery business.

But it's set up a big showdown with the Gun Lake Tribe, a showdown that's already blown a $7 million hole in the budget of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation.

Today on Stateside:

flickr user Eljoja /

When it comes to the issue of marijuana – to legalize or not to legalize – Michigan seems to be about where Colorado was not too long ago.

Colorado had over a decade to experiment with medical marijuana before legalizing its recreational use in November 2012, which Colorado Public Radio’s Ben Markus tells us gave the state ample opportunity to figure out how marijuana can fit into the political and business landscape.

“Medical marijuana was huge. The state then decided, hey, we need to regulate this thing,” he says.

Osrin/flickr /


It has been a wild ride on Wall Street this week and it's only Tuesday.

On Monday, the Dow plummeted more than 1,000 points before closing the day down 3.6%.

Today, investors were in a buying mood and the Dow went up. 

user Bjoertvedt /

Can Democrats flip three Michigan districts in the 2016 election?

Nancy Kaffer tackled that question in her recent column for the Detroit Free Press.

In her column, Kaffer looked at the 1st, 7th, and 8th Congressional districts in Michigan. Voters in each of those districts elected Republicans in the last election, “by pretty narrow margins.”

Today on Stateside:

Can Democrats flip three Michigan districts in 2016? Nancy Kaffer tackled that question in her recent column for the Detroit Free Press.

The latest Ideas for Innovation event, hosted by Detroit Future City, focused on what to do with 23 square miles of vacant land in Detroit. Dara O’Byrne and Guy Williams continue the conversation with us today.

user A7nubis /

Getting high in Michigan has certainly changed over the past few years.

Voters legalized marijuana for medical purposes in Michigan in 2008. Soon, it could be legal just for fun.

A number of groups seeking to legalize cannabis in Michigan are working to put ballot proposals on the 2016 ballot.

flickr user Texas Military Forces /

Latinos have been a presence in Michigan for more than a century. But even after all those decades, the Latino population is still experiencing significant growing pains.

That's the conclusion of a major report from the Michigan State University Julian Samora Research Institute titled, "Latinos 2025: A Needs Assessment of Latino Communities in Southeast Michigan."

John U. Bacon

Michigan Radio sports commentator John U. Bacon joins us for this week’s sports roundup.

Tigers returning to form

After a 15-8 win over the Cubs on Wednesday, it looks like the Tigers might be returning to form.

But Bacon tells us it’s too little, too late.

United Auto Worker contingent at a protest in New York.
Thomas Good / wikimedia commons -

The current negotiations over the contracts are continuing pretty much out of the spotlight. There’s a delicate balance that both sides are trying to pull off.

Detroit News business columnist Daniel Howes shared the "wants" and "needs" of both sides in these contract talks with us.

He penned a column today in the News about the talks.

Today on Stateside:

  • Michigan Congressman Dan Kildee is urging people to contact the Canadian Ministry of the Environment about a proposed nuclear waste storage facility near Lake Huron. 

  • There's less than a month to go before the clock runs out and contracts between the UAW and the Detroit Three automakers expire. Detroit News business columnist Daniel Howes talks with us about the delicate balance that both sides are trying to pull off.

flickr user The National Guard /

When we talk about post-traumatic stress disorder, the conversation usually focuses on our members of the military, both active-duty and veterans.

But that misses a large group of men and women who struggle with PTSD: our first responders.

A campaign banner with a slogan derived from "Tippecanoe and Tyler Too," used in the 1840 U.S. presidential election.
user Pharos /

When Donald Trump announced his candidacy for the White House, he did it to the tune of Neil Young’s “Rockin’ in the Free World.”

It didn’t take very long for Young to issue an icy statement declaring that Trump did not have permission to use the song, and that, “Neil Young, a Canadian citizen, is a supporter of Bernie Sanders for President of the United States.”

Ryan Grimes

This weekend, runners and walkers of all levels and ages will converge on Flint for the HealthPlus Crim Festival of Races.

Carol Cerny is going to be there with her running shoes on.

She’s doing the 10-mile event to celebrate the 10-year anniversary of her double lung transplant.

Today on Stateside:

EarthWorks is one of several community gardens making use of vacant land in Detroit
flickr user Jessica Reeder /

Still less than a year out of its historic bankruptcy, Detroit’s successes and failures continue to make headlines.

The city may have shed most of its debt, but it continues to lose population – down more than 60% of its 1950 population of 1.8 million.

Take that shrinking population and couple it with Mayor Mike Duggan’s ongoing push to tear down blighted buildings, and you get a lot of empty land.

Bill McGraw’s latest story for Bridge Magazine looks at Mayor Duggan’s blueprint for redesigning Detroit.

Flickr user Wonderlane /

When it comes to getting credit and being deemed a good risk for a loan, the choices made by lenders can be hard to understand. Many potential borrowers who earn a paycheck and pay their bills but don't have a credit history can be seen as untrustworthy.

Now, we're seeing some lenders look to social media and Internet use to determine whether someone can afford to borrow.

Flickr user Justin C Lenk /

Beer is big in Michigan. The state is fifth in the nation for its number of breweries, microbreweries and brewpubs. This growth is creating a demand for workers to brew, serve and market all of that beer.

Schoolcraft College is launching a new brewing program this fall to help turn out those workers.

Rich Weinkauf is the Vice President and Chief Academic Officer at Schoolcraft College in Livonia. And he’ll be teaching one of the courses in the new brewing and distillation technology certificate program.

Today on Stateside: