michigan roads http://michiganradio.org en Michigan will receive $115 million to fix roads http://michiganradio.org/post/michigan-will-receive-115-million-fix-roads <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Michigan will receive is $115 million in special state funding this year for 124 specific road projects in certain districts. &nbsp;This includes 38 projects in the metro Detroit region.</span></p><p>Crain’s Business Reporter Chris Gautz said most of the money will go to districts that are represented by Republicans, and about $41 million went to some districts represented by Democrats.</p><p>“For somebody in another part of the state that isn’t getting any money -- maybe if they are represented completely by Democrats -- they’re not going to see anything and they are wondering why their roads aren’t as important,” Gautz said.</p><p>Click <a href="http://www.crainsdetroit.com/article/20140702/NEWS/140709947/38-metro-detroit-road-projects-get-special-funding-from-state-heres">here</a> for a full list of the projects.</p><p>Guatz said there will also be about $1.5 million dollars for the Secretary of State’s office to help combat insurance fraud.&nbsp;</p><p><em>*Listen to full interview above.&nbsp;</em></p><p> Wed, 09 Jul 2014 17:23:57 +0000 Stateside Staff 18307 at http://michiganradio.org Michigan will receive $115 million to fix roads MEC report suggests Michigan living conditions don't live up to residents' hopes http://michiganradio.org/post/mec-report-suggests-michigan-living-conditions-dont-live-residents-hopes <p>The living conditions in Michigan are crumbling and the residents aren't happy about it.</p> Mon, 30 Jun 2014 19:04:31 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 18207 at http://michiganradio.org MEC report suggests Michigan living conditions don't live up to residents' hopes Michigan lawmakers' failure on roads eroding our faith in government http://michiganradio.org/post/michigan-lawmakers-failure-roads-eroding-our-faith-government <p>Our Legislature’s refusal to do what’s needed to fix the roads made me remember a brilliant political move many years ago.</p><p>President Harry Truman was running for re-election, and his chances didn’t look good.</p><p>He was a Democrat, and had a Republican Congress that didn’t want to cooperate on anything he wanted. So he called them back for a special session during the campaign. He challenged Congress to pass laws the nation needed.</p> Mon, 16 Jun 2014 16:19:59 +0000 Jack Lessenberry 18009 at http://michiganradio.org Michigan lawmakers' failure on roads eroding our faith in government What about fixing Michigan roads? http://michiganradio.org/post/what-about-fixing-michigan-roads <p></p><p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">OK,&nbsp;let’s say I asked you two months ago which of these things our conservative Republican lawmakers would be most likely to do: </span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">1. &nbsp;Approve using state money to help beef up Detroit’s pension finds and vote to raise the minimum wage by almost $2 an hour over the next few years. </span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">2. Or,&nbsp;agree to fix our totally awful roads.</span></p><p>My guess is you would have thought fixing the roads most likely, and boosting the minimum wage an impossible pipe dream. Well, guess what,&nbsp;raising the minimum wage was the first thing they did, followed by helping Detroit.</p><p>But they still won’t fix our horrible roads, even though that’s what voters want. What’s worse is that our bizarre Legislature seems to be drifting further away from dealing with the problem.</p><p>Democrats, by the way, control nothing.&nbsp;Their main role is to break ties between the different factions of Republicans.</p><p>Here’s what’s happening: Two Republicans are showing principled leadership.</p><p>First of all, Gov. Rick Snyder, who for years has called on lawmakers to do the right thing and come up with the money needed to fix our roads. Two years ago, he said that would cost at least $1.2 billion a year in new revenue for the next 10 years. Lawmakers did nothing. But after last winter, voters are up in arms. They want the roads, fixed, period, and they have a new champion: Senate Majority Leader Randy Richardville of Monroe. He hasn’t always been a leader here.</p><p> Thu, 05 Jun 2014 15:07:49 +0000 Jack Lessenberry 17877 at http://michiganradio.org What about fixing Michigan roads? Study finds Metro Detroit pedestrians face higher risk http://michiganradio.org/post/study-finds-metro-detroit-pedestrians-face-higher-risk <p><a href="http://www.smartgrowthamerica.org/documents/dangerous-by-design-2014/dangerous-by-design-2014.pdf">A new study suggests</a> that Detroit is the most dangerous city in the Midwest for pedestrians.</p><p>The study comes from the National Complete Streets Coalition, a non-profit that advocates modifying streetscapes to accommodate more than cars.</p><p>It calculated a “Pedestrian Danger Index” that ranked Detroit the 11<sup>th</sup> most-dangerous metro area in the country—and the most dangerous outside the South.</p> Mon, 26 May 2014 21:55:08 +0000 Sarah Cwiek 17755 at http://michiganradio.org Study finds Metro Detroit pedestrians face higher risk Just fix the damn roads http://michiganradio.org/post/just-fix-damn-roads <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">I think the low point in my faith in democracy came late this winter, soon after I had lost one tire to a pothole. I got home after nearly losing another on the lunar surface of a suburban Detroit mile road, just in time to hear a state senator claiming we needed another tax cut.</span></p><p>Well, I thought, I am now living in a Third World country. But guess what? That senator heard from his constituents, big-time. Before long, he was retreating from his tax-cut talk, legislative tail between his legs. Why?</p><p>To quote the leader of his caucus, Senate Majority Leader Randy Richardville R- Monroe,&nbsp;<span style="line-height: 1.5;">“I’ve heard the message loud and clear that the roads are messed up, and I think the most common phrase I’m hearing from back home is 'just fix the damn roads.'"</span></p><p> Wed, 21 May 2014 14:20:20 +0000 Jack Lessenberry 17687 at http://michiganradio.org Just fix the damn roads Poll shows strong support for raising taxes to pay for repairing Michigan roads http://michiganradio.org/post/poll-shows-strong-support-raising-taxes-pay-repairing-michigan-roads <p>A proposal to greatly increase Michigan’s gas tax goes before a state Senate committee tomorrow.</p><p></p><p>The proposal has already cleared the state House. Among other things, it calls for taxing fuel based on price, instead of volume. It would generate about $500 million in new tax revenue. That's about a third of what Gov. Rick Snyder and others say is needed to fix the roads.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p></p> Mon, 19 May 2014 19:12:23 +0000 Steve Carmody 17659 at http://michiganradio.org Poll shows strong support for raising taxes to pay for repairing Michigan roads Roads will be busy this Memorial Day weekend http://michiganradio.org/post/roads-will-be-busy-memorial-day-weekend <p>Michigan roads are expected to be crowded later this week as people take advantage of the first big summer holiday weekend.</p><p></p><p>AAA predicts 1.1 million Michiganders will travel during the Memorial Day holiday weekend. That’s a slight increase over Memorial Day weekend 2013.</p><p></p><p>AAA says most people will travel by car, encouraged by slipping gasoline prices, though they can expect to pay more for hotel rooms and rental cars.</p><p></p><p>Not everyone is traveling by car or truck.</p><p></p> Mon, 19 May 2014 13:11:00 +0000 Steve Carmody 17646 at http://michiganradio.org Roads will be busy this Memorial Day weekend We pay for bad roads with more repairs, higher fuel costs http://michiganradio.org/post/we-pay-bad-roads-more-repairs-higher-fuel-costs <p>If by any chance you’ve left your house anytime in, oh, say, the last year, you may have noticed that our roads are in terrible shape. Gov. Rick Snyder knows this. Two years ago, he asked the Legislature for $1.2 billion a year for a decade in new money to fix the roads. If you think that’s a lot, you’re right.</p><p>But it is less than studies show our horrible roads are costing us every year in the increased cost of fuel and car repairs, as well as &nbsp;the incalculable cost of businesses that won’t expand in or move to Michigan because our infrastructure is in such lousy shape.</p><p>The governor hasn’t always been a statesman, nor above pandering to the far right. But he is a businessman, and devoted to economic expansion. He knows you need decent roads to attract business, especially the kind that produce high-tech, high-paying jobs. Mon, 14 Apr 2014 14:10:19 +0000 Jack Lessenberry 17218 at http://michiganradio.org We pay for bad roads with more repairs, higher fuel costs Stateside for Monday, April 7, 2014 http://michiganradio.org/post/stateside-monday-april-7-2014 <p>House Republicans have come up with an annual $500 million solution to fixing Michigan's horrible damaged roads. Kathleen Gray of the Detroit Free Press joins us to discuss the proposition.&nbsp;</p><p>A Clinton Township man was senselessly beaten and robbed on Detroit's east side after stopping to help a 10-year-old boy who stepped into oncoming traffic. Steve Utash&nbsp;is now in a medically induced coma. Rochelle Riley of the Detroit Free Press joins us to try and understand this crime.&nbsp;</p><p>A neighborhood church in Metro Detroit has closed its doors about 91 years. St. Henry's parish numbers have fallen so low that the church is closing. Stateside's Kyle Norris grew up attending the church, and she joins us today to share her story. Mon, 07 Apr 2014 21:53:04 +0000 Stateside Staff 17130 at http://michiganradio.org Stateside for Monday, April 7, 2014 House Republicans have a plan to mend Michigan roads http://michiganradio.org/post/house-republicans-have-plan-mend-michigan-roads <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">As the snow and ice have melted, Michigan has come up with a bumper crop of potholes and crumbling roads&nbsp;</span>–&nbsp;<span style="line-height: 1.5;">roads that were already badly in need of repair. And that has turned everyone's attention to fixing the roads and how to pay for it.&nbsp;</span></p><p>State House Republicans are proposing an annual $500 million solution.&nbsp;</p><p>Here to tell us more about that is Kathleen Gray of the Detroit Free Press Lansing Bureau.</p><p><em>Listen to the full interview above.&nbsp;</em></p><p> Mon, 07 Apr 2014 21:28:37 +0000 Stateside Staff 17134 at http://michiganradio.org House Republicans have a plan to mend Michigan roads Local governments are hopeful, cautious about state road-funding plan http://michiganradio.org/post/local-governments-are-hopeful-cautious-about-state-road-funding-plan <p>The organization championing the interests of Michigan’s local governments is <a href="http://blogs.mml.org/wp/inside208/2014/04/03/speaker-bolger-unveils-new-transportation-funding-plan/">withholding judgment on a proposal</a> to fix the state’s roads.</p><p>Officials with the Michigan Municipal League say they’re cautiously hopeful about <a href="http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20140406/POLITICS02/304060020/Snyder-calls-House-road-funding-plan-constructive">the plan Republican State House leader Jase Bolger unveiled</a> last week.</p> Mon, 07 Apr 2014 11:00:00 +0000 Sarah Cwiek 17125 at http://michiganradio.org Local governments are hopeful, cautious about state road-funding plan Searching for the right solution to fix Michigan's roads http://michiganradio.org/post/searching-right-solution-fix-michigans-roads <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Recently I criticized the Legislature and State Senator Jack </span>Brandenberg<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> for wanting to roll back state income taxes. He has a bill to cut the rate from 4.25% to 3.9% over three years.</span></p><p>For an average taxpayer, that would mean a tax cut of less than a hundred bucks a year. But it would leave the state with nearly a billion dollars a year less, when it already doesn’t have enough money to maintain the roads or provide other services.</p><p>After this bill sailed through the Senate Finance Committee earlier this month, I said I thought it was irresponsible election year pandering.</p><p>Later, Sen.&nbsp;Brandenberg called me.</p><p>He was warm, earnest, had a sense of humor, and said I had gotten it wrong. He wasn’t pandering in the least, he told me; this is what he genuinely believed. He said this stemmed from an agreement to roll back taxes going back to when Jennifer Granholm was governor.</p><p>I thought his calling me took class, and it was clear he really does believe in this. Brandenberg has no need to pander; he is certain to be reelected this fall to a safe Republican seat.</p><p> Fri, 14 Mar 2014 14:26:12 +0000 Jack Lessenberry 16850 at http://michiganradio.org Searching for the right solution to fix Michigan's roads This supplemental bill gravely endangers infant health and Michigan's future http://michiganradio.org/post/supplemental-bill-gravely-endangers-infant-health-and-michigans-future <p></p><p><span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small; line-height: normal;">Well, yesterday the legislature approved a budget supplemental bill that includes more than two hundred million dollars in new money to fix the roads, and the politicians are congratulating themselves.</span></p><p><span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small; line-height: normal;">Governor Snyder issued a press release praising this, and congratulating the legislature on “working together” and creating the “positive relationship” needed to pass this bill.</span></p><p><span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small; line-height: normal;">Now if you think about it, what he said sounds pretty bizarre. Working together? Positive relationship? That’s the kind of language you use when two nations sign a trade agreement.</span></p><p><span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small; line-height: normal;">These are the two houses in our state’s legislature. Their job is to work together for our good. And you’d think a “positive relationship” should be a piece of cake, since they are both controlled by Republicans. But in fact, there isn’t all that much positive in this bill. The road funding, while necessary, doesn’t address the major problem, and it isn’t clear whether this money will be allocated fairly.</span></p><p> Thu, 13 Mar 2014 14:21:36 +0000 Jack Lessenberry 16836 at http://michiganradio.org This supplemental bill gravely endangers infant health and Michigan's future 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 Drivers navigate pothole-strewn roads as Michigan lawmakers debate emergency funding http://michiganradio.org/post/drivers-navigate-pothole-strewn-roads-michigan-lawmakers-debate-emergency-funding <p>Many county road budgets in Michigan are idling on empty after our brutal winter.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">They hope state lawmakers will agree soon on an emergency road funding bill.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Drivers in Michigan could be forgiven if they think their morning commute feels more like an off-road adventure.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Brutal winter weather has turned many roads into a moonscape of potholes, more suited to an ATV than the family car.</span></p> Fri, 07 Mar 2014 20:34:00 +0000 Steve Carmody 16763 at http://michiganradio.org Drivers navigate pothole-strewn roads as Michigan lawmakers debate emergency 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 Stateside for Tuesday, Feb. 18, 2014 http://michiganradio.org/post/stateside-tuesday-feb-18-2014 <p></p><p>There are more than 70 virtual currencies in the marketplace.</p><p>You may have heard of the biggest players:&nbsp;Bitcoin, Ripples, and Litecoin, which are taking out the middleman and reinventing the meaning of money. The idea is gaining momentum among college students. Today, we heard how virtual money is opening doors for young Michigan entrepreneurs.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Then, school districts around the nation and right here in Michigan are talking about ways to accommodate transgender students. The ACLU of Michigan's </span>LGBT<span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;Project (</span><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Georgia, 'Times New Roman,serif'; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;">lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender)&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">is already working on model policies.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">And we spoke with some talented Michigan musicians about how their EP (extended play recording) reached No. 2 on the iTunes electronic charts with virtually no promotion.</span></p><p> Tue, 18 Feb 2014 21:50:52 +0000 Stateside Staff 16497 at http://michiganradio.org Stateside for Tuesday, Feb. 18, 2014 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? Michigan ranks last of all 50 states on per capita road spending http://michiganradio.org/post/michigan-ranks-last-all-50-states-capita-road-spending <p>Michigan spends less money per capita on its roads and bridges than any other state in the nation.</p><p>It spends $154 per person annually, according to the 2010 Census.&nbsp;</p><p> Thu, 13 Feb 2014 12:00:22 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 16422 at http://michiganradio.org Michigan ranks last of all 50 states on per capita road spending