Holland http://michiganradio.org en Frugal Holland takes on biggest one-time debt for natural gas plant http://michiganradio.org/post/frugal-holland-takes-biggest-one-time-debt-natural-gas-plant <p>The city of Holland will issue $160 million in bonds to build a new power plant. It’s the biggest bond offering the city, the public school district or the city’s publicly owned utility has ever issued.</p><p>Holland is home to a huge population of conservatives whose families emigrated from the Netherlands. That's why the city is known for its <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/tulips-are-back-photos-2013-tulip-time-festival">Tulip Time </a>festival, historic windmill, wooden shoes, and as Holland Mayor Kurt Dykstra puts it, being frugal.</p> Thu, 27 Feb 2014 19:09:06 +0000 Lindsey Smith 16646 at http://michiganradio.org Frugal Holland takes on biggest one-time debt for natural gas plant Holland needs air permit for new natural gas plant http://michiganradio.org/post/holland-needs-air-permit-new-natural-gas-plant-0 <p>The City of Holland wants to get an air permit so it can build a <a href="http://p21decision.com/the-new-power-plant/#!">new natural gas-fired power plant</a>.</p><p>People have until <a href="http://www.deq.state.mi.us/aps/cwerp.shtml">Wednesday to tell the state’s Department of Environmental Quality what they think of the plans.</a></p><p>The roughly $200 million dollar power plant would help replace the city’s 70 year old DeYoung coal plant.</p> Mon, 25 Nov 2013 11:00:00 +0000 Lindsey Smith 15401 at http://michiganradio.org Holland needs air permit for new natural gas plant Lessenberry discusses election highlights http://michiganradio.org/post/lessenberry-discusses-election-highlights <p>This <strong><em>Week in Michigan Politics</em> </strong>Jack Lessenberry and Christina Shockley discuss some of the highlights from Tuesday's election, including <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/mike-duggan-detroits-next-mayor">the Detroit mayoral race</a>, elections on <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/royal-oak-voters-uphold-lgbt-ordinance">LGBT issues</a>, and proposals to<a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/voters-three-more-michigan-cities-pass-marijuana-decriminalization-proposals"> decriminalize marijuana</a>.</p><p></p><p> Wed, 06 Nov 2013 13:36:36 +0000 Jack Lessenberry, Christina Shockley & Emily Fox 15158 at http://michiganradio.org Lessenberry discusses election highlights Michigan battery factory closes for 6 weeks http://michiganradio.org/post/michigan-battery-factory-closes-6-weeks <p>HOLLAND, Mich. (AP) - A Michigan factory that makes lithium-ion batteries for General Motors is halting production for up to six weeks because of a controversy over a chemical.<br><br>LG Chem spokesman Jeremy Hagemeyer says a chemical used to make batteries may not be registered with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. He declined to name it.<br> Sat, 07 Sep 2013 15:50:11 +0000 The Associated Press 14323 at http://michiganradio.org From the school spirit files: Staff and students at alternative school say stigma is undeserved http://michiganradio.org/post/school-spirit-files-staff-and-students-alternative-school-say-stigma-undeserved <p> Alternative high schools often carry a bit of a stigma.</p><p><a href="http://www.wavecrestacademy.org/">Wavecrest&nbsp;Career Academy</a>&nbsp;in Holland is no different.</p><p>Shelby Danielson is a senior at the school. "People think it's a bad school and it's really not," she says.</p><p>"There are so many great kids and they have so much potential, they just need that extra push from teachers and they might not get that at other schools."</p> Mon, 26 Aug 2013 18:50:25 +0000 Sarah Alvarez 14141 at http://michiganradio.org From the school spirit files: Staff and students at alternative school say stigma is undeserved The tulips are back! Photos from 2013 Tulip Time Festival http://michiganradio.org/post/tulips-are-back-photos-2013-tulip-time-festival <p>Stem Fest, no more <span class="st">— this year's <a href="http://www.tuliptime.com/">Tulip Time</a> festival in Holland is in full bloom.</span></p><p><span class="st">Last year, the annual flower festival, which brings in hundreds of thousands of tulips and tulip fans alike, notoriously delivered <a href="http://www.michiganradio.org/post/stemfest-2012-t-shirts-hot-selling-item-hollands-tulip-time">more stems than petals</a>.</span><span class="st"> But</span> Holland's flora is back in action, and Instagram users shared their photos from the&nbsp; fest.</p> Thu, 09 May 2013 15:31:13 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 12491 at http://michiganradio.org The tulips are back! Photos from 2013 Tulip Time Festival What’s up with the future of advanced batteries? http://michiganradio.org/post/what-s-future-advanced-batteries <p>Boeing hopes to have a permanent fix for its new Dreamliner jet by the end of the month. All Dreamliners have been grounded since January after reports of the batteries smoking or catching fire.</p><p>The news is another bump in the road for lithium ion battery manufacturers, who’ve already had some problems marketing the next generation of batteries.</p><p><strong>Lithium ion dominating the market</strong></p><p>Lithium ion based batteries are everywhere; your cell phone, laptop or tablet, cordless power tools. But there are several kinds of lithium ion batteries. The ones in the Dreamliner aren’t the same as the ones in consumer electronics.</p><p>“We’re in the middle of a horse race and right now lithium ion is far in the lead of that horse race,” Sam Jaffe said. He’s an energy storage analyst with Pike Research. Wed, 06 Mar 2013 14:59:26 +0000 Lindsey Smith 11548 at http://michiganradio.org What’s up with the future of advanced batteries? Records show LG Chem owes more than $250,000 to subcontractors http://michiganradio.org/post/records-show-lg-chem-owes-more-250000-subcontractors <p>Officials from Allegan County confirm three companies have put tax liens on LG Chem’s Holland plant. Andy J. Egan Company’s lien is worth $142,199.73,Circuit Electric’s is worth $107,712.15 and Johnson Controls’ $14,600. They say two other liens from 2011 were paid off.</p><p>The plant cost roughly $300 million dollars to build. Federal stimulus money paid for half that cost. Last week the Department of Energy’s Inspector General released a report that concluded the company wasted some of that money. The company paid back more than eight-hundred-thousand dollars.</p> Wed, 20 Feb 2013 22:18:34 +0000 Lindsey Smith 11331 at http://michiganradio.org Records show LG Chem owes more than $250,000 to subcontractors Despite some bad news, Holland leaders optimistic about battery manufacturing http://michiganradio.org/post/despite-some-bad-news-holland-leaders-optimistic-about-battery-manufacturing <p>Community leaders in Holland, Michigan are trying to stay upbeat about the future of the battery industry <a href="http://www.michiganradio.org/post/holland-hopes-become-leader-advanced-battery-manufacturing">they’ve worked so hard to attract</a>.</p><p>But the past week has been rough for advanced battery maker LG Chem. A <a href="http://energy.gov/sites/prod/files/OAS-RA-13-10.pdf">U.S. Department of Energy audit </a>reported the company likely wasted more than a million dollars in grant money.</p> Tue, 19 Feb 2013 15:35:11 +0000 Lindsey Smith 11292 at http://michiganradio.org Despite some bad news, Holland leaders optimistic about battery manufacturing Not Dutch? New Spanish language magazine launches in Holland http://michiganradio.org/post/not-dutch-new-spanish-language-magazine-launches-holland <p>Most people know Holland, Michigan for its Dutch roots and maybe it’s <a href="http://www.michiganradio.org/term/tulip-time-festival">big tulip festival</a>.</p><p>But in the 2010 U.S. Census, more than&nbsp;1 in 5 people who live in Holland identified as Latino. So maybe it’s no surprise why <a href="http://www.hollandsentinel.com/homepage">The Holland Sentinel </a>newspaper decided to put out a new Spanish&nbsp;language monthly&nbsp;magazine.</p> Fri, 25 Jan 2013 03:09:20 +0000 Lindsey Smith 10928 at http://michiganradio.org Not Dutch? New Spanish language magazine launches in Holland Despite trespassing conviction, Holland minister won’t rule out more civil disobedience http://michiganradio.org/post/despite-trespassing-conviction-holland-minister-won-t-rule-out-more-civil-disobedience <p>A Holland minister who’s been pushing for equal protection for gay, bisexual and transgender people says he’ll consider staging another protest. That’s in spite of a jury this week convicting him of trespassing for his first protest.</p><p><a href="http://www.michiganradio.org/term/bill-freeman">Reverend Bill Freeman</a> is upset <a href="http://www.michiganradio.org/post/gender-identity-sexual-orientation-laws-fail-move-forward-holland-city-council">Holland City Council voted not to add sexual orientation </a>and gender identity to the city’s anti-discrimination laws. One night last October Freeman <a href="http://www.michiganradio.org/post/minister-arrested-holland-anti-discrimination-fight">decided to occupy city hall </a>to try to get city council <a href="http://www.michiganradio.org/post/what%E2%80%99s-next-anti-discrimination-laws-holland-lots">to change its mind</a> and join more than a dozen other Michigan cities with similar laws. He was arrested for trespassing when the building was closed that evening.</p><p>“It’s time for the City of Holland to join the 21st century,” Freeman said, referencing changes to the military’s Don’t Ask Don’t Tell policy and President Obama’s recent support of gay marriage. “The City of Holland knows what the right thing is and that is not to allow discrimination of anybody,” Freeman added. Thu, 27 Sep 2012 18:08:30 +0000 Lindsey Smith 9271 at http://michiganradio.org Despite trespassing conviction, Holland minister won’t rule out more civil disobedience Sounding off on Holland, Michigan's long-term energy plans http://michiganradio.org/post/sounding-holland-michigans-long-term-energy-plans <p>People and interest groups are expected to weigh in on the City of Holland’s long term energy plan at two public hearings tonight and Wednesday.<br><br>Angela Badran, with Holland’s Board of Public Works, says the city is trying to figure out the best way to supply residents and industry with baseload energy for the next few decades.</p><p>"It’s very complex sort of situation that we’re looking at in, how can we best fit the needs of Holland for the next 25 years," says Badran.<br><br>The biggest decision facing the city-owned utility is what to do with its aging coal plant.</p><p>An independent consultant says the city would get the best return on investment if it converts the coal plant to burn natural gas instead.<br><br>Holland is taking input on several proposed plans at this week's public hearings. Tue, 04 Sep 2012 17:02:41 +0000 Lindsey Smith 8929 at http://michiganradio.org Sounding off on Holland, Michigan's long-term energy plans City of Holland takes a long-term look at energy issues http://michiganradio.org/post/city-holland-takes-long-term-look-energy-issues <p>Holland City Council adopted guidelines on Wednesday night&nbsp;to handle the city&rsquo;s long-term energy needs.</p><p>The<a href="http://www.cityofholland.com/sites/default/files/fileattachments/final_cep_for_suscom_sept_9_2011_for_website_0.pdf"> comprehensive&nbsp;plan</a> covers a wide variety of energy issues facing the city over the next 40 years.</p><p>Arguably the biggest energy issue long-term is whether the city needs to expand capacity at <a href="http://www.michiganradio.org/term/holland-coal-plant">its coal plant, </a>or maybe modify it to burn natural gas.</p> Thu, 19 Jul 2012 01:00:00 +0000 Lindsey Smith 8340 at http://michiganradio.org City of Holland takes a long-term look at energy issues City of Holland decides winds not strong enough for wind farm http://michiganradio.org/post/city-holland-decides-winds-not-strong-enough-wind-farm <p>The City of Holland is backing out of plans for a potential wind farm. The city-owned utility bought the option to lease hundreds of acres in Allegan County after the state identified the area as one of the best in Michigan for wind energy potential.</p><p>But after more than a year of serious study, the city doesn&rsquo;t think there&rsquo;s enough potential to build the wind farm.</p><p>&ldquo;When we went into this, everything looked like it was going to be a good project to pursue,&rdquo; said Dan Nally, who directs business services for Holland&rsquo;s Board of Public Works.</p><p>&quot;We shouldn&rsquo;t take the fact that this project doesn&rsquo;t go forward that we are not supporting renewable, because we absolutely, positively are. But we will also, at the same time, get the best value that we can,&rdquo; Nally said.</p><p>The wind was good, but not as strong as they had hoped. The plan was to have a 20 mega-watt wind farm-- relatively small compared to large scale commercial projects.</p><p>Nally says the utility has spent roughly $678,000 to collect wind data and study the impact on birds, bats and wetlands.</p><p>&quot;We don&rsquo;t feel that any of this money has been wasted. It&rsquo;s been an investment in understanding what we could and could not do,&rdquo; Nally said.</p><p>Nally says Holland is working on agreements to purchase renewable power from other wind farms, but he declined to give details until any agreement is negotiated.</p><p>Holland and all other utilities in Michigan must have 10 percent of their energy come from renewable sources like wind by 2015. Nally says Holland is still on track to meet that requirement. Wed, 11 Jul 2012 21:46:53 +0000 Lindsey Smith 8234 at http://michiganradio.org City of Holland decides winds not strong enough for wind farm How do anti-discrimination laws affect your business, job, and community? http://michiganradio.org/post/how-do-anti-discrimination-laws-affect-your-business-job-and-community <p>Michigan&rsquo;s Department of Civil Rights is studying how current laws and policies regarding gay and transgender people affect people&rsquo;s lives, jobs, communities and businesses. Though state laws ban discrimination in housing and employment based on some factors &ndash; people who are gay or transgender are not included.</p><p>The department will <a href="http://www.michigan.gov/mdcr/0,4613,7-138-4952-280999--,00.html">hold a public hearing in Holland Tuesday</a>.</p> Sat, 23 Jun 2012 19:50:51 +0000 Lindsey Smith 7998 at http://michiganradio.org How do anti-discrimination laws affect your business, job, and community? "Stemfest 2012" t-shirts hot selling item for Holland's Tulip Time http://michiganradio.org/post/stemfest-2012-t-shirts-hot-selling-item-hollands-tulip-time <p>Organizers of Holland&rsquo;s&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tuliptime.com/">Tulip Time festival </a>are having a little fun with the fact the usual draw - million of blooming tulips - will be missing this year.</p><p>In Holland, you hear some worries about it almost every year. But this year it was especially bad.</p><p>&ldquo;The weather&rsquo;s been so warm. When tulips were blooming on St. Patrick&rsquo;s Day we all looked at each other and said&nbsp;&#39;we&rsquo;ll have nothing by the festival.&rdquo;</p><p>Luckily there are some tulip blooms left; about 30-percent Auwerda estimates.</p><p>&nbsp;&ldquo;The locals have always called it a stemfest when there&rsquo;s not a lot of tulips. And so we thought, let&rsquo;s just do a little tongue in check and have a little fun with it.&rdquo;</p><p>They made <a href="http://www.tuliptime.com/store-apparel">official &ldquo;Stemfest 2012&rdquo; t-shirts</a> and buttons. Demand was so high for the original 300 stemfest t-shirts, they had to stop taking online orders shortly after they hit the shelves Thursday.&nbsp;</p><p>Auwerda says they&rsquo;ve reordered the shirts. They&#39;re expected to restock Tuesday, but she can&#39;t promise they&#39;ll&nbsp;have enough to sell&nbsp;online.&nbsp;(I read&nbsp;other <a href="http://www.mlive.com/news/grand-rapids/index.ssf/2012/05/celebrate_stemfest_2012_with_h.html">businesses are selling unofficial versions</a>.)&nbsp; Fri, 04 May 2012 13:09:53 +0000 Lindsey Smith 7333 at http://michiganradio.org "Stemfest 2012" t-shirts hot selling item for Holland's Tulip Time Blossoms ahead of schedule for Holland’s Tulip Time Festival http://michiganradio.org/post/blossoms-ahead-schedule-holland-s-tulip-time-festival <p>Many of the more than six million tulips planted in Holland are beginning to bloom already&hellip;five weeks before the city&rsquo;s&nbsp;<a href="http://www.tuliptime.com/">Tulip Time Festival</a>.</p> Mon, 02 Apr 2012 17:34:42 +0000 Lindsey Smith 6875 at http://michiganradio.org Blossoms ahead of schedule for Holland’s Tulip Time Festival Holland wins $1.6 million in Blue Cross Blue Shield lawsuit http://michiganradio.org/post/holland-wins-16-million-blue-cross-blue-shield-lawsuit <p>An Ottawa County Circuit Court judge is ordering Blue Cross Blue Shield to pay the City of Holland $1.6 million. Holland is one of dozens of communities that sued Blue Cross over variable fees charged on insurance claims filed by employees.&nbsp; The city claims the insurer didn&rsquo;t tell them about the fees for 17 years.</p> Thu, 23 Feb 2012 21:48:46 +0000 Lindsey Smith 6342 at http://michiganradio.org Obama's State of the Union guests, two from Michigan http://michiganradio.org/post/obamas-state-union-guests-two-michigan <p>Two people from Michigan will be the guests of First Lady Michelle Obama at tonight&#39;s State of the Union address.</p><p>Holland resident Bryan Ritterby and Detroiter Alicia Boler-Davis.</p><p><strong>Alicia Boler-Davis</strong></p><p>Boler-Davis is the plant manager at GM&#39;s Orion Assembly and Pontiac Stamping. She oversees the production of the newly released Chevy Sonic - &quot;the first new small car program from GM to be manufactured in the U.S.,&quot; according to the White House.</p><p><span style="font-family: &quot;Book Antiqua&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;; color: windowtext;">When President Obama and President Lee of South Korea visited GM&#39;s facility, Boler-Davis led them on the tour. </span></p><p><span style="font-family: &quot;Book Antiqua&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;; color: windowtext;">Boler-Davis was </span>the first African American woman to be plant manager at a GM vehicle manufacturing plant, according to <a href="http://www.diversitycareers.com/articles/pro/11-augsep/managing_gm.htm">DiversityCareers.com</a>.</p><p><strong>Bryan Ritterby</strong></p><p>Ritterby describes himself as an &quot;Average Joe.&quot;</p><p>Someone who is not all that political, and who normally wouldn&#39;t watch a State of the Union address.</p><p>Tonight, he&#39;ll be watching with Boler-Davis from the balcony in the U.S. House of Representatives.</p><p>Garrett Ellison of the <a href="http://www.mlive.com/politics/index.ssf/2012/01/energetx_worker_invited_to_sta.html">Grand Rapids Press</a> writes about Ritterby&#39;s invitation from the White House:</p><blockquote><p>Bryan Ritterby&rsquo;s crazy week started on Saturday with a ring from Energetx Composities, where he works as a lab technician, telling him the White House might be calling.</p><p>Thus began a whirlwind adventure that culminates tonight when Ritterby, 58, of Holland, will be Michelle Obama&rsquo;s guest in the First Lady&rsquo;s box for the president&rsquo;s annual State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress.</p><p>&ldquo;For some crazy reason, they liked my story,&rdquo; said Ritterby, who has spent all day fielding calls from reporters in his hotel room at the luxurious St. Regis Hotel in downtown Washington D.C., a block and a half from the White House.</p><p>&ldquo;I&rsquo;m so nervous, I&rsquo;m leaning against the wall so my knees don&rsquo;t knock.&rdquo;</p></blockquote><p> Tue, 24 Jan 2012 20:21:32 +0000 Mark Brush 5917 at http://michiganradio.org Obama's State of the Union guests, two from Michigan Seeking to add gay rights to a Holland city ordinance http://michiganradio.org/post/seeking-add-gay-rights-holland-city-ordinance <p>In May of 2010, <a href="http://www.michiganradio.org/term/bill-freeman">Pastor Bill Freeman</a> asked the Holland City Council to <a href="http://www.michiganradio.org/post/what%E2%80%99s-next-anti-discrimination-laws-holland-lots">pass a Gay Rights Ordinance</a>. The city&#39;s Human Relations Commission considered the question for nearly a year, and recommended unanimously that the City Council add the words, &quot;sexual orientation and gender identity,&quot; to the city&#39;s anti-discrimination ordinances.<br /><br /> The City Council <a href="http://www.michiganradio.org/post/gender-identity-sexual-orientation-laws-fail-move-forward-holland-city-council">voted 5-4 in June of last year against doing so</a>. Pastor Freeman is trying to keep the issue alive. He&rsquo;s attended every regular City Council meeting since June to ask that the &quot;no&quot; voters change their minds. He also <a href="http://www.michiganradio.org/post/minister-pleads-not-guilty-charges-trying-%E2%80%9Coccupy%E2%80%9D-holland-city-hall">tried to &quot;occupy&quot; city hall</a> on October 19th last year.&nbsp; He was arrested for trespassing.</p><p>As part of our new <a href="http://michiganradio.org/term/seeking-change">&quot;Seeking Change&quot;</a> series, we speak to Pastor Freeman about his efforts in <a href="http://michiganradio.org/term/holland">Holland</a>. Mon, 23 Jan 2012 11:51:11 +0000 Christina Shockley 5894 at http://michiganradio.org Seeking to add gay rights to a Holland city ordinance