In this morning's news...
Kwame Kilpatrick in Trouble… Again
New corruption charges have been filed against former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick. Federal prosecutors announced the indictments of Kilpatrick and others including Kilpatrick’s father, Bernard Kilpatrick, yesterday. At the announcement, Barbara McQuade, the U.S. Attorney in Detroit said:
The indictment charges all of them with working together to abuse Kwame Kilpatrick’s public offices. Both his position as state representative, as well as his position of mayor of Detroit, to unjustly enrich themselves, through a pattern of extortion, bribery and fraud.
As the Detroit Free Press reports,
The charges -- racketeering, extortion, bribery, obstruction of justice, mail and wire fraud, signing false tax returns and income tax evasion -- carry penalties of three to 30 years in prison.
Lawmakers Finish Session
After previously announcing that their work for the year was done, state lawmakers ended their 2009-2010 legislative session yesterday in Lansing. Lawmakers completed a bill that would allow the sale of the Michigan School for the Deaf to a private developer and approved a measure that OKs a moose hunting season in the Upper Peninsula. Legislators did not, however, take up several controversial bills that would have dealt with teacher-tenure reform or insurance coverage for autism treatments.
State Unemployment Rate Dips Slightly
Michigan’s jobless rate dropped slightly to 12.4% in November. That means the state has now gone 11 months without an uptick in the unemployment rate. But, as Rick Pluta reports, it’s not all good news:
… most of the drop in the jobless number was because 19,000 unemployed people stopped looking for work. They are no longer counted as part of the state’s jobless rate. When people who stopped looking are counted, along with part-timers who would like to work full-time, Michigan’s rate of unemployment and under-employment is 21.2%.
The nation’s November jobless rate was 9.8%.
Granholm Signs ‘Pure Michigan’ Funding Bill
Governor Granholm signed a measure yesterday that allows $10 million to go to the ‘Pure Michigan’ advertising campaign. The money will go toward winter and spring ads. The campaign would most likely have been canceled if the extra funds had not been approved. Granholm had previously wanted $25 million for the campaign.