roads http://michiganradio.org en If you seek a pleasant pothole... http://michiganradio.org/post/if-you-seek-pleasant-pothole <p></p> Sun, 13 Apr 2014 13:34:23 +0000 Mike Perini 17215 at http://michiganradio.org If you seek a pleasant pothole... Finding funding for damaged roads creates partisan streets http://michiganradio.org/post/finding-funding-damaged-roads-creates-partisan-streets <p></p><p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">State lawmakers like to say, "There are no Republican roads or Democratic roads" when speaking about Michigan's battered roads and bridges – battered to the point that Republican Gov. Rick Snyder wants more than $1 billion a year in additional road funding.</span></p><p>Chris Gautz, Capitol correspondent for Crain's Detroit Business, has been digging into that statement, and is wondering if it's true, particularly when it comes to the funding of road repairs.&nbsp;</p><p><em>Listen to the full interview above.&nbsp;</em></p><p> Mon, 31 Mar 2014 20:40:57 +0000 Stateside Staff 17045 at http://michiganradio.org Finding funding for damaged roads creates partisan streets Lansing mayor lays out balanced city budget http://michiganradio.org/post/lansing-mayor-lays-out-balanced-city-budget <p>Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero says after nine years of deep budget cuts, the capitol city finally is entering a new fiscal year with a balanced budget.</p><p>Bernero unveiled his proposed city budget for next year last night.&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p>Bernero credits an uptick in property and city income tax revenues for the city’s improved budget picture.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p>During&nbsp;the last nine years, the city of Lansing has trimmed its workforce by more than 30% and won contract concessions from its unions.</p> Tue, 25 Mar 2014 02:21:27 +0000 Steve Carmody 16954 at http://michiganradio.org Lansing mayor lays out balanced city budget Michigan lawmakers preparing a small patch for our roads http://michiganradio.org/post/michigan-lawmakers-preparing-small-patch-our-roads <p>Despite appearances, those who make our laws sometimes do listen to those who elect them. Here’s one example happening right now. Anyone who drives knows that our roads are in terrible shape.</p><p>Nobody remembers them ever being this bad, especially in major urban areas. But the Legislature has stubbornly ignored appeals from Gov. Rick Snyder to fix them.</p> Wed, 12 Mar 2014 15:44:13 +0000 Jack Lessenberry 16823 at http://michiganradio.org Michigan lawmakers preparing a small patch for our roads Compromise on emergency road funding to be announced this afternoon http://michiganradio.org/post/compromise-emergency-road-funding-be-announced-afternoon <p>State lawmakers will roll out a deal this afternoon on a spending package to fix Michigan’s pothole-filled roads.</p><p></p><p>The supplement funding bill is expected to include $200 million for local road agencies. Brutal winter weather has drained county and city road budgets.</p><p></p><p>State House Speaker Jase Bolger declined to give specifics about the compromise road bill this morning, except to say it will address the state’s immediate road problems.</p><p></p> Tue, 11 Mar 2014 15:19:20 +0000 Steve Carmody 16807 at http://michiganradio.org Compromise on emergency road funding to be announced this afternoon An update on where we are with emergency road funding http://michiganradio.org/post/update-where-we-are-emergency-road-funding <p>As we gingerly pick our way through Michigan's pothole-ridden and crumbling roads, state lawmakers are hashing out just how much money to spend on fixing the state's roads and highways.</p><p>Chris Gautz, the Capitol correspondent for Crain's Detroit Business, gave us an update.</p><p><em>*Listen to our interview above.</em></p><p> Mon, 10 Mar 2014 20:45:05 +0000 Stateside Staff 16799 at http://michiganradio.org An update on where we are with emergency road funding Michigan should 'bite the bullet' on road funding, suggests a PA state transportation official http://michiganradio.org/post/michigan-should-bite-bullet-road-funding-suggests-pa-state-transportation-official <p>County road commissioners meeting in Lansing today heard from a Pennsylvania transportation official on how Michigan can spend more money on its crumbling roads.</p><p></p><p>Bradley Mallory is the executive deputy secretary of Pennsylvania’s transportation department.</p><p></p><p>His state recently passed a $2.3 billion road spending plan. The plan includes a higher gas tax and other fees.</p><p></p><p>Mallory says like Michigan, Pennsylvania lawmakers know they have to do something to fix their roads.</p><p></p> Wed, 05 Mar 2014 22:14:22 +0000 Steve Carmody 16735 at http://michiganradio.org Michigan should 'bite the bullet' on road funding, suggests a PA state transportation official Emergency road funding could be coming after nasty winter http://michiganradio.org/post/emergency-road-funding-could-be-coming-after-nasty-winter <p>A monster pothole season is upon us – and state lawmakers say they want to help.</p><p></p><p>A state Senate panel on Tuesday added $100 million for road repairs and maintenance to a mid-year budget bill to help communities fix potholes and plow roads.</p><p></p><p>Lawmakers say local governments need the help to offset the costs of constant snow removal and efforts to fix potholes caused by the nasty winter weather.</p><p></p> Wed, 19 Feb 2014 01:30:38 +0000 Jake Neher 16502 at http://michiganradio.org Emergency road funding could be coming after nasty winter How are Michigan roads holding up this winter? http://michiganradio.org/post/how-are-michigan-roads-holding-winter <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">As the winter of 2013-2014 drags on, we're really seeing what it's done to our roads.</span></p><p>Patching crews try in vain to keep up with a bumper crop of potholes. More and more of us are losing tires, blowing the suspension as we bang into one of those gaping potholes.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">And keep in mind, Michigan's roads were crumbling before this winter.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">With more winter to go, we wondered where our roads stand and what needs to happen in Lansing to do what it takes to repair and maintain the roads.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Michigan Department of Transportation Director Kirk </span>Steudle<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> knows all too well what this winter has done to the pavement, and he joined us today.&nbsp;</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;"><em>Listen to the full interview above.</em></span></p><p> Tue, 18 Feb 2014 21:44:28 +0000 Stateside Staff 16495 at http://michiganradio.org How are Michigan roads holding up this winter? Drivers beware, warns MDOT director http://michiganradio.org/post/drivers-beware-warns-mdot-director <p></p><p>Kirk Steudle, director of the Michigan Department of Transportation, says the harsh winter will make the pothole situation in Michigan this spring the worst we’ve seen in our lifetime. He testified this week before the state House Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation.</p><p>Joining us to talk roads are Susan Demas, publisher of Inside Michigan Politics, and Ken Sikkema, former Senate Majority Leader and Senior Policy Fellow at Public Sector Consultants.</p><p> Thu, 13 Feb 2014 20:35:28 +0000 Jennifer White & Mercedes Mejia 16443 at http://michiganradio.org Drivers beware, warns MDOT director In this morning's headlines: Health care, juveniles, roads http://michiganradio.org/post/mornings-headlines-health-care-juveniles-roads <p><strong>More Michiganders signing up for health care than expected</strong></p><p>"About 112,000 Michigan residents chose a private insurance plan under the federal health care law through January, outpacing what was projected in a government memo last summer," the Associated Press reports.</p><p><strong>Juvenile lifer sentencing rules head to the governor's desk</strong></p><p>"Michigan lawmakers have given final approval to new sentencing rules after the U.S. Supreme Court struck down mandatory life imprisonment for juveniles. The bills now head to Gov. Rick Snyder for his signature. The legislation applies to future cases and not retroactively to more than 350 Michigan inmates under 18 when they committed crimes," the Associated Press reports.</p><p><strong>Lowest amount of money spent on roads in the U.S.: Michigan</strong></p><p>"Michigan spends less money per capita on our roads and bridges than any other state in the nation. We spent just $154 dollars per person, according to the 2010 Census," Michigan Radio <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/michigan-ranks-last-all-50-states-capita-road-spending">reports. </a></p><p> Thu, 13 Feb 2014 12:30:14 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 16424 at http://michiganradio.org In this morning's headlines: Health care, juveniles, roads Bernero: The state of the city of Lansing is strong. The state of the city's roads not so good. http://michiganradio.org/post/bernero-state-city-lansing-strong-state-citys-roads-not-so-good <p>Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero used his State of the City speech Thursday to make a pitch for state funding to repair local roads.</p><p>Mayor Virg Bernero says the city of Lansing plans to spend three million dollars this year to repair pot hole covered roads in the capitol city.&nbsp;</p><p>But the mayor says the city would have to spend five times that much each year for a decade to fix all of Lansing’s road problems.</p><p>In his speech, Bernero called on state lawmakers to use part of the state’s billion dollar budget surplus to help repair local roads across Michigan.</p> Fri, 31 Jan 2014 01:56:06 +0000 Steve Carmody 16256 at http://michiganradio.org Bernero: The state of the city of Lansing is strong. The state of the city's roads not so good. MDOT director: 'How many people should die' before roads are fixed? http://michiganradio.org/post/mdot-director-how-many-people-should-die-roads-are-fixed <p>Michigan’s top transportation official is blasting state lawmakers for all but giving up on passing a long-term road funding fix this year.</p><p></p><p>Gov. Rick Snyder wants the Legislature to boost funding for roads and infrastructure by more than $1 billion a year. But lawmakers say Michigan voters are not ready to support raising taxes or fees to pay for it. Some say the roads may have to get worse before they can get better.</p><p></p> Wed, 22 Jan 2014 02:29:10 +0000 Jake Neher 16125 at http://michiganradio.org MDOT director: 'How many people should die' before roads are fixed? The Legislature needs to focus more on Michigan citizens http://michiganradio.org/post/legislature-needs-focus-more-michigan-citizens <p></p><p>I have to wonder sometimes how our elected leaders in the Legislature sleep. They spend vast amounts of money getting elected to jobs, the whole purpose of which is to serve the citizens. Then they don’t do that –selling out to special interests, or pandering shamelessly to voters – so they can cling to power for another couple years.</p><p>If they were in Congress, I still wouldn’t approve, though it would be easier to understand. Congressmen, after all, can stay in office until they are legally dead, accumulating power and seniority. But if you are a member of the Michigan House of Representatives, you can serve six years maximum, for life. State senators can serve a maximum of eight years.</p><p>Now – if you are going to be gone anyway soon, why not do the right thing while you are there? Sadly, that isn’t the way most legislators seem to think. I’ll give you one huge example:</p><p>Forget anything morally controversial, like abortion insurance or wolf hunting. Forget anything where there is a legitimate public policy debate, like what to do about failing schools. Instead, let’s talk about the most obvious example: Our roads.</p><p> Wed, 15 Jan 2014 14:17:05 +0000 Jack Lessenberry 16029 at http://michiganradio.org The Legislature needs to focus more on Michigan citizens Grand Rapids considers extending income tax hike to pay for road improvements http://michiganradio.org/post/grand-rapids-considers-extending-income-tax-hike-pay-road-improvements <p>Voters in Grand Rapids could get a chance to vote on an income tax extension this year. The city wants to extend a temporary income tax hike to maintain roads and sidewalks.</p><p>Grand Rapids voters approved the temporary income tax hike in 2010. It’s paid for a number of projects that will lower the overall cost of running city government. That increase will expire in 2015.</p> Tue, 07 Jan 2014 18:20:48 +0000 Lindsey Smith 15916 at http://michiganradio.org Grand Rapids considers extending income tax hike to pay for road improvements What might the Michigan Legislature do in 2014? http://michiganradio.org/post/what-might-michigan-legislature-do-2014 <div><p>I<span style="line-height: 1.5;">t’s Thursday, the day we talk Michigan politics with Ken </span>Sikkema<span style="line-height: 1.5;">, former Senate majority leader and senior policy fellow at Public Sector Consultants, and Susan </span>Demas<span style="line-height: 1.5;">, publisher of Inside Michigan Politics.</span></p></div><div>The legislature has wrapped up session for the year. And, after the holidays we’re entering an election year. Let's find out, besides the gubernatorial election, what other major elections should we be watching next year, and what might the legislature accomplish in 2014?</div><div> Thu, 19 Dec 2013 21:45:00 +0000 Jennifer White & Mercedes Mejia 15766 at http://michiganradio.org What might the Michigan Legislature do in 2014? Lessenberry talks child well-being, renewable energy in Michigan and looks ahead to 2014 politics http://michiganradio.org/post/lessenberry-talks-child-well-being-renewable-energy-michigan-and-looks-ahead-2014-politics <p>This <em>Week in Michigan Politics</em>, Jack Lessenberry and Christina Shockley discuss the state of child well-being in Michigan, and look ahead to Governor Rick Snyder's energy plan he'll announce Thursday. They also take a look at legislation likely to be taken up in early 2014.</p><p></p><p> Wed, 18 Dec 2013 14:02:41 +0000 Jack Lessenberry, Christina Shockley & Emily Fox 15742 at http://michiganradio.org Lessenberry talks child well-being, renewable energy in Michigan and looks ahead to 2014 politics In this morning's headlines: Roads funding, blight team in Detroit, manufacturing announcement http://michiganradio.org/post/mornings-headlines-roads-funding-blight-team-detroit-manufacturing-announcement <p><strong>Roads will be a priority in 2014, lawmakers say</strong></p><p>"State legislative leaders say boosting funding for roads will top their priority list in 2014. Governor Rick Snyder has been urging lawmakers to increase road and infrastructure spending by more than a billion dollars," Jake Neher reports.</p><p><strong>Teams start counting vacant buildings to help fight blight in Detroit </strong></p><p>"A large-scale effort to count Detroit’s blighted and vacant buildings starts in earnest today. Seventy five teams of surveyors will assess and map more than 350,000 parcels of land across the city," Sarah Cwiek reports.</p><p><strong>Manufacturing announcement expected in Flint </strong></p><p>"Top officials with General Motors, the UAW and Michigan government will be in Flint today for what’s being called a “significant manufacturing” announcement. GM spokesmen are not saying what the announcement at the Flint Assembly Plant will be," Steve Carmody reports.</p><p> Mon, 16 Dec 2013 12:04:26 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 15702 at http://michiganradio.org In this morning's headlines: Roads funding, blight team in Detroit, manufacturing announcement Remember the roads? http://michiganradio.org/post/remember-roads <div style="color: rgb(0, 0, 0); font-family: arial; font-size: small; font-style: normal; font-variant: normal; font-weight: normal; letter-spacing: normal; line-height: normal; orphans: auto; text-align: start; text-indent: 0px; text-transform: none; white-space: normal; widows: auto; word-spacing: 0px; -webkit-text-stroke-width: 0px; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);"><p></p><p>Earlier this week I had a meeting in Ann Arbor and then went to Detroit. When I swung off the freeway onto a surface street I hit a pothole I couldn’t see so hard I was convinced I’d lose a tire.</p> Thu, 24 Oct 2013 15:02:56 +0000 Jack Lessenberry 14978 at http://michiganradio.org Remember the roads? Medicaid expansion delay may mean less money for Michigan roads http://michiganradio.org/post/medicaid-expansion-delay-may-mean-less-money-michigan-roads <p>LANSING, Mich. (AP) - Delaying Medicaid expansion in Michigan is having another side-effect besides forcing low-income adults to wait three months longer for health insurance under the federal health overhaul.<br /><br />It also means there could be $73 million less for deteriorating roads at a time lawmakers are funneling more money there in part to avoid raising gasoline taxes and vehicle registration fees.<br /> Sat, 19 Oct 2013 15:25:00 +0000 The Associated Press 14908 at http://michiganradio.org Medicaid expansion delay may mean less money for Michigan roads