News Roundup
7:25 am
Fri November 5, 2010

In this morning's news...

Photo courtesy of Infrogmation/Creative Commons

Allegations Against Shirvell

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State Legislature
7:23 am
Fri November 5, 2010

Whitmer to lead state Senate Dems

State Senator Gretchen Whitmer
Photo courtesy of www.senate.mi.gov/whitmer

Democratic state Senator Gretchen Whitmer will be Michigan's next Senate Minority Leader. Whitmer's fellow Democratic Senators elected her to the position yesterday. She'll be the first woman to hold the job. She became a state Senator in 2006.  Before that, she was as a member of the Michigan House of Representatives from 2000 to 2006.

Education
10:40 pm
Thu November 4, 2010

Kalamazoo Promise: Ashley's Story

Ashley Steele and her son Richard Peake. Steele was among the first high school graduates to benefit from the "Kalamazoo Promise."
Kate Davidson Changing Gears

By Kate Davidson of Changing Gears

Five years ago this month, a group of anonymous donors made a radical promise to Kalamazoo, Michigan. They would pay for almost every public school graduate to go to a state-supported college or university. Our Changing Gears project has been profiling towns across the region as they try to reinvent themselves for the new economy. Here, they take a closer look at the "Kalamazoo Promise."

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Election 2010
10:33 pm
Thu November 4, 2010

A new sheen of red across the Great Lakes states

Election map of U.S. Senate wins in 2010
user leodac Creative Commons

by Niala Boodhoo of Changing Gears

This week's election brought a new sheen of red to the Great Lakes states: with the Republican party seizing control of governorships and state houses across the region. In many cases, it was the first time the Republican Party has taken control since 2003. So what does this political reinvention mean for the region?

The economy was a familiar theme on election night. It was invoked to cheering crowds by each of the incoming governors of Ohio, Michigan and Wisconsin.

Republican governor-elect John Kasich of Ohio:

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Food
6:50 pm
Thu November 4, 2010

First "restaurant week" underway in Grand Rapids

It's restaurant week in GR
restaurantweekgr.com

A number of Grand Rapids restaurants are booked this weekend thanks to the new event celebrating great dining at a reasonable price.

San Chez sous chef Daryl Rector prepares for the night shift. "We've got verduras y tortas for the vegan crowd. It's a spicy black beans & quinoa cakes with roasted vegetables and this avo-cumber sauce," Rector explains. "That's a fake yogurt that we make with avocado - basically puree that, add acidity and sweetness and you can't really tell the difference between that and yogurt."

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Politics
5:48 pm
Thu November 4, 2010

The transition begins for Governor-elect Snyder

Rick Snyder in July 2009, after he announced his intention to run for Governor of Michigan.
Rick Snyder's campaign website

The confetti and balloons have be swept up, and the yard signs are slowly being removed.

At 12:01 pm on January 1st, 2011, Michigan will have a new governor.

Governor-elect Snyder is assembling the people that will move into positions of power in Lansing.

Snyder has chosen three former Engler administration officials to head up the transition team:

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Election 2010
5:28 pm
Thu November 4, 2010

Arts advocacy group gives thumbs up to Governor-elect Snyder

Artist studio
Photo courtesy of Dani Davis

Americans for the Arts, a national advocacy group, says Michigan's governor elect is a champion of the arts.

In Republican Rick Snyder's plan to reinvent Michigan, he talks about "restoring funding for the arts." State funding is currently around $2.5 million, down from $26 million in 2001.

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Sports
3:00 pm
Thu November 4, 2010

NCAA penalizes the University of Michigan's football program

The Wolverines set to score against Ohio State in 2005.
Mark Brush Michigan Radio

Update 4:15pm: Here's the University of Michigan's response to the NCAA's announcement. Athletic Director David Brandon says 

"There were no surprises and there will be no appeal, because there is nothing to appeal. Effective today, this process is over and done and we can focus all of our time and energy on the future."

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A baseball great
2:25 pm
Thu November 4, 2010

Legendary baseball manager Sparky Anderson dies

Sparky Anderson (right) during his days with the Cincinnati Reds.
Roger Blevins Creative Commons

From the Associated Press:

Family spokesman Dan Ewald says Anderson died from complications from dementia.

Anderson guided the Cincinnati Reds to World Series championships in 1975 and 1976 and then led the Detroit Tigers to the 1984 title.

You can see photos of Sparky at the Detroit Free Press

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A Clean Slate for the State?
11:19 am
Thu November 4, 2010

Michigan's environment & a new administration

Rick Snyder will be sworn in as Governor on January 1st, 2011 at noon.
Snyder's campaign website

There wasn’t a lot of talk about environment during the race for governor, but Governor-elect Rick Snyder made it clear during the campaign that he thinks the state’s regulatory system is broken and said he wants fewer regulations on businesses. That has some people wondering whether that means there will also be fewer of the regulations that prevent pollution in the state.  I talked with James Clift, policy director for the Michigan Environmental Council, to get his take on this.

News Roundup
7:30 am
Thu November 4, 2010

In this morning's news...

Photo by Infrogmation/Creative Commons

Granholm Meets With Snyder

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Reviving closed schools
7:32 pm
Wed November 3, 2010

Workshop will help developers buy, repurpose school buildings

Cooley High School in Detroit. The school was one of many recently closed by DPS.
user chuckjav Creative Commons

Detroit Public Schools officials are working to educate developers on strategies for purchasing and re-using closed school buildings.

The school system will host a workshop later this month in collaboration with an historic preservation non-profit. Potential buyers will get information about possible uses for the buildings, as well as information about tax credits, codes and the purchase process.

Karen Nagher heads Preservation Wayne. She says school buildings can be a great buy:

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Business
4:57 pm
Wed November 3, 2010

Amway to settle lawsuit alleging unfair and illegal business practices

Amway logo

Amway is one of the leading, if not the largest, direct selling companies in the world. Three people trying to sell the vitamins, cookware and beauty products the company distributes sued an Amway subsidiary in 2007. They claim the company then known as Quixtar misled them about start up costs and how much money they'd make.

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Hackel new Macomb County executive
4:35 pm
Wed November 3, 2010

Hackel to join Patterson, Ficano as new exec

Macomb County will be represented by a county executive for the first time, starting in January. 

 

County Sheriff Mark Hackel was elected to the post – which voters approved as part of a new county charter last year. 

 

Hackel says Macomb County and the southeast Michigan region stand to benefit from the change.

 

 "I think it provides a lot more stability and the first to set forward a vision or an agenda for the county itself. We’ve never had that opportunity before," Hackel said. 

 

Political Money
3:39 pm
Wed November 3, 2010

Out-of-State Political Money

The campaigns for Michigan candidates for Congress drew a lot of money from out of state. 

The price tag for the Congressional campaigns comes in at about $40 million.  Rich Robinson is with the Michigan Campaign Finance Network.  He says the political parties in Washington, unions, and non-profits with anonymous contributors all chipped in.

“Of the $40 million, I’m estimating $16.8 million of that came from outside sources.”

Election 2010
2:40 pm
Wed November 3, 2010

Top 5 Michigan counties for voter turnout (and the 5 worst)

The fuscia counties turned out to vote. The dark purple counties did not.
Lani Chisnell Michigan Radio

The Secretary of State's office has released unofficial voter turnout results for all the counties in Michigan (the State Board of Canvassers will make them official later this month).

  • The voters in Leelanau county scored the best turnout rate in the state at 61.60%
  • The voters in Cass county scored the worst turnout rate in the state at 35.74%

Here are the top 5:

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Election 2010
1:42 pm
Wed November 3, 2010

Voter turnout in Michigan lower than expected

Not as many people vote in gubernatorial election years compared to Presidential election years.

Outgoing Secretary of State Terry Lynn Land had expected 52% of eligible voters to show up at the polls yesterday. The unofficial tally stands at 45% today.

The turnout results remain "unofficial" until they are certified by the Board of State Canvassers later this month.

Of the 7.28 million registered to vote, 3.3 million did so.

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Governor-elect Snyder
11:14 am
Wed November 3, 2010

Snyder, Granholm meet to talk transition

Governor-elect Rick Snyder met this morning with the woman he'll replace in Lansing.
(Sarah Hulett, Michigan Radio)

Governor-elect Rick Snyder met this morning with the woman he'll replace in Lansing.

Snyder and Governor Jennifer Granholm shook hands and posed for pictures in front of reporters before the meeting.

"A lot of hard work in the next couple of months," Granholm said, "but I appreciate the commitment to working together that you've continually professed. I think that's going to be healthy for Michigan. Our team stands ready to do whatever it takes to make sure this is a smooth transition."

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Election 2010
8:59 am
Wed November 3, 2010

Sec of State office sees 3rd consecutive GOP woman in charge

Secretary of State-elect Ruth Johnson
Photo courtesy of www.rj4mi.com

With Oakland County Clerk Ruth Johnson's win last night, she becomes the third consecutive Republican woman  to hold the Michigan Secretary of State's office. 

Johnson beat her Democratic challenger Jocelyn Benson, an author and law professor at Wayne State University.

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Election 2010
7:23 am
Wed November 3, 2010

MI's Congressional delegation is full of new faces

U.S. Capitol Building in Washington D.C.
Citypeek/Creative Commons

Michigan's congressional delegation is getting a makeover. One-third of its 15 members will be new.  Here's a rundown of who is in... and who is out:

1st District

Republican Dan Benishek won the race to succeed veteran Democrat Bart Stupak in Michigan’s 1st District which covers all of the Upper Peninsula and parts of the northern Lower Peninsula. Stupak announced in April that he would not seek a 10th term in Washington. Benishek was a Tea-Party favorite and was endorsed by former Alaska governor Sarah Palin.

2nd District

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