Law http://michiganradio.org en Detroit retirees said "yes" to the city's bankruptcy restructuring plan. What's next? http://michiganradio.org/post/detroit-retirees-said-yes-citys-bankruptcy-restructuring-plan-whats-next <p>Detroit retirees voted overwhelmingly to approve emergency manager Kevyn&nbsp;Orr's plan of adjustment.</p><p>That plan includes the unprecedented "grand bargain"--a mixture of public and private funds that will minimize cuts to city pensions, while protecting the Detroit Institute of Arts' assets from other city creditors.</p><p>But retirees aren't the only group of creditors who voted on the plan. Other groups did as well--<a href="http://www.freep.com/article/20140722/NEWS01/307220112/Syncora-detroit-bankruptcy-grand-bargain">and not all voted "yes."</a></p> Tue, 22 Jul 2014 22:47:24 +0000 Sarah Cwiek 18480 at http://michiganradio.org Detroit retirees said "yes" to the city's bankruptcy restructuring plan. What's next? Michiganders could lose federal tax credits for Obamacare http://michiganradio.org/post/michiganders-could-lose-federal-tax-credits-obamacare <p><a href="http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2014/07/22/334034284/u-s-appeals-court-deals-blow-to-obamas-health-law">A federal court ruling</a> today could affect tens of thousands of Michiganders who got health insurance through Obamacare.</p><p></p><p>More than 237,000 of the 272,000 Michiganders who signed up for Obamacare&nbsp;selected a plan through the marketplace with federal financial assistance. &nbsp;<span style="line-height: 1.5;">The tax credits helped subsidize health insurance payments for low- and moderate-income people.</span></p><p></p> Tue, 22 Jul 2014 17:55:32 +0000 Steve Carmody 18472 at http://michiganradio.org Michiganders could lose federal tax credits for Obamacare Detroit retirees say yes to the "grand bargain" in big victory for Kevyn Orr, DIA http://michiganradio.org/post/detroit-retirees-say-yes-grand-bargain-big-victory-kevyn-orr-dia <p>The proposed "grand bargain" that would soften the blow to Detroit pensioners while preserving the city's art collection has cleared a major hurdle.</p><p>That's because city retirees have <a href="http://www.freep.com/article/20140721/NEWS01/307210176/Detroit-bankruptcy-pension-grand-bargain-vote">voted for the plan by an overwhelming margin.</a></p><p>As city creditors, pensioners got to cast ballots for or against emergency manager Kevyn Orr's bankruptcy restructuring. The grand bargain is an integral part of that plan of adjustment.</p> Tue, 22 Jul 2014 04:37:02 +0000 Sarah Cwiek 18461 at http://michiganradio.org Detroit retirees say yes to the "grand bargain" in big victory for Kevyn Orr, DIA DWSD will temporarily halt controversial water shutoffs http://michiganradio.org/post/dwsd-will-temporarily-halt-controversial-water-shutoffs <p>The Detroit Water and Sewerage Department will stop shutting off water service to people with unpaid bills. &nbsp;</p><p></p><p>Curtrice Garner is a DWSD spokeswoman. &nbsp;She insists this is a “pause," not a moratorium, to give people time to pay their overdue water bills.</p><p>“What we are going to do is temporarily stop the shutoffs or collections efforts,” says Garner, “However, after the 15 day period, we’ll commerce what we were doing which is shutting off those who are in delinquent status.”</p> Mon, 21 Jul 2014 15:50:40 +0000 Steve Carmody 18453 at http://michiganradio.org DWSD will temporarily halt controversial water shutoffs Jury selection begins in Renisha McBride shooting case http://michiganradio.org/post/jury-selection-begins-renisha-mcbride-shooting-case <div class="gmail_default" style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small; line-height: normal; display: inline;">​</div><p><span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small; line-height: normal;">DETROIT (AP) - Jury selection starts today in Detroit in the trial of a 55-year-old man who shot to death a young woman who had been knocking on his door in the wee hours of the morning in November.</span></p><p><span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small; line-height: normal;">Prosecutors say Theodore Wafer grabbed his shotgun, opened the front door of his Dearborn Heights home and blasted 19-year-old Renisha McBride in the face.</span><br style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small; line-height: normal;" />&nbsp;</p><p><span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small; line-height: normal;">McBride was drunk but unarmed when she had gone to get help after crashing her car.</span></p><p><span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small; line-height: normal;">Wafer claims McBride was aggressive and violent and that he acted in self-defense.</span></p><p> Mon, 21 Jul 2014 15:12:28 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 18450 at http://michiganradio.org Jury selection begins in Renisha McBride shooting case We should learn whether Detroit retirees approved the "grand bargain" today http://michiganradio.org/post/we-should-learn-whether-detroit-retirees-approved-grand-bargain-today <p>We should know how Detroit retirees voted on the proposed “grand bargain” later today.</p><p>City pensioners had until July 11th to vote on the city’s bankruptcy restructuring plan, formally known as the “plan of adjustment.”</p><p>The grand bargain is just one part of that plan.</p><p>It would use more than $800 million in combined state and private foundation dollars to backstop city pension funds, minimizing retiree losses.</p> Mon, 21 Jul 2014 10:00:00 +0000 Sarah Cwiek 18446 at http://michiganradio.org We should learn whether Detroit retirees approved the "grand bargain" today Supreme Court orders exam of Michigan judge's mental health http://michiganradio.org/post/supreme-court-orders-exam-michigan-judges-mental-health <p>LANSING, Mich. (AP) - The Michigan Supreme Court has ordered a judge to undergo a mental health exam.</p><p></p> Sat, 19 Jul 2014 21:04:00 +0000 The Associated Press 18442 at http://michiganradio.org Supreme Court orders exam of Michigan judge's mental health Michigan inmate accepts $250 to settle lawsuit http://michiganradio.org/post/michigan-inmate-accepts-250-settle-lawsuit <p>JACKSON, Mich. (AP) - The state Corrections Department has agreed to pay $250 to settle a lawsuit by an inmate who said his health was harmed by exposure to mold and bleach.</p><p></p> Sat, 19 Jul 2014 19:58:00 +0000 The Associated Press 18441 at http://michiganradio.org Michigan inmate accepts $250 to settle lawsuit Flint residents criticize state troopers during a community meeting http://michiganradio.org/post/flint-residents-criticize-state-troopers-during-community-meeting <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Michigan State Police troopers faced a barrage of criticism during a community meeting in Flint today. Much of the complaints centered on recent fatal auto accidents involving state troopers.</span></p><p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">It was a sometimes emotional three hour meeting between Flint residents and state police commanders.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Many people, including family members of two women killed in auto accidents linked to car chases involving state troopers, blasted the state police.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">“You don’t even have a 'Plan B' when you’re chasing somebody,” a woman in the audience, “That just doesn’t make any sense, to come here as a professional and kill people who were not even involved in what you were dealing with.”</span></p><p>Dozens of Michigan State Police troopers are patrolling Flint city streets and assisting with investigations in the city. &nbsp;The troopers are augmenting Flint's depleted police department, which has been decimated in recent years by budget cuts.</p><p> Fri, 18 Jul 2014 19:54:34 +0000 Steve Carmody 18433 at http://michiganradio.org Flint residents criticize state troopers during a community meeting AG Schuette won’t give details on his opposition to medical marijuana bills http://michiganradio.org/post/ag-schuette-won-t-give-details-his-opposition-medical-marijuana-bills <p>The state attorney general is not saying why he opposes bills that would ease restrictions on medical marijuana in Michigan. Some top lawmakers are now urging Bill Schuette to detail his concerns.</p><p></p> Thu, 17 Jul 2014 21:31:10 +0000 Jake Neher 18424 at http://michiganradio.org AG Schuette won’t give details on his opposition to medical marijuana bills Future of medical marijuana bills uncertain after clearing state Senate panel http://michiganradio.org/post/future-medical-marijuana-bills-uncertain-after-clearing-state-senate-panel <p>Two bills that would ease restrictions on medical marijuana in Michigan are one step closer to becoming law. A state Senate panel approved the legislation Wednesday.</p><p></p><p>But it is not clear what will happen to the bills now that they are going to the full Senate.</p><p></p><p>House Bill 4271 would let communities decide to allow and regulate medical marijuana dispensaries. House Bill 5104 would allow patients to use edible and other non-smokable forms of cannabis.</p> Wed, 16 Jul 2014 21:20:30 +0000 Jake Neher 18407 at http://michiganradio.org Future of medical marijuana bills uncertain after clearing state Senate panel The battle continues over bringing undocumented children to Michigan http://michiganradio.org/post/battle-continues-over-bringing-undocumented-children-michigan-0 <p>The courts may be the next step for groups fighting plans to bring dozens of undocumented children to a facility in Michigan.</p><p></p><p>Tens of thousands of undocumented children have flooded across the southern U.S. border since the beginning of the year. &nbsp;<a href="http://www.wolverinehs.org/">Wolverine Human Services</a> is negotiating a contract to bring up to 120 boys between 12 and 17 years of age to its facility in Vassar, Michigan.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p></p> Tue, 15 Jul 2014 00:34:45 +0000 Steve Carmody 18374 at http://michiganradio.org The battle continues over bringing undocumented children to Michigan Some Flint residents want state troopers to leave town http://michiganradio.org/post/some-flint-residents-want-state-troopers-leave-town <p>Frustration of about the presence of Michigan State Police troopers patrolling Flint hit the street today.</p><p></p><p>Flint city councilman Wantwaz Davis organized a rally that brought out more than 100 people to Flint city hall. &nbsp;Davis says state troopers are driving on city streets “like renegades and cowboys.”</p> Mon, 14 Jul 2014 23:45:42 +0000 Steve Carmody 18372 at http://michiganradio.org Some Flint residents want state troopers to leave town Energy giant faces criminal trial on bid-rigging in Michigan lease sale http://michiganradio.org/post/energy-giant-faces-criminal-trial-bid-rigging-michigan-lease-sale <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">You might recall that earlier this year</span><a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/state-unfolds-evidence-against-energy-giants-week-conspiracy-case" style="line-height: 1.5;" target="_blank">&nbsp;Michigan’s attorney general filed charges against two energy giants</a>.</p><p>Encana<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> Oil and Gas USA and </span>Chesapeake<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> Energy were accused of colluding to lower the price of land leases for oil and gas exploration.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Last Friday, a Michigan&nbsp;</span>Cheboygan<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> County District Court judge&nbsp;rule</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">d</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;that Chesapeake Energy Corp must face a criminal trial, citing evidence of a conspiracy between the companies.</span></p><p><a href="http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/07/10/us-antitrust-chesapeake-enrgy-idUSKBN0FF1Z020140710">Reuters </a>quoted&nbsp;<span style="font-family: georgia, 'times new roman', serif; font-size: 15px; line-height: 23px;">Judge Maria Barton of Michigan’s Cheboygan County District Court:</span></p><blockquote><p><span style="color: rgb(119, 119, 119); line-height: 16px;">"The direct and circumsta</span><span style="color: rgb(119, 119, 119); line-height: 16px;">ntial evidence established that the parties did in fact strike an agreement to bid-rig the State sale."&nbsp;</span></p></blockquote><p>Part of that evidence could have come from&nbsp;Encana<span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;Oil. That company struck a plea deal with the State of Michigan in exchange for its help in Michigan's anti-trust case&nbsp;</span><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Georgia, Times, serif; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 22px;">Chesapeake Energy. Encana&nbsp;also agreed</span><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Georgia, Times, serif; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 22px;"> to pay a $5 million fine.</span></p><p><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Georgia, Times, serif; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 22px;">This past May, <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/energy-company-agrees-pay-michigan-5-million-anti-trust-fine">MPRN's Rick Pluta&nbsp;reported</a>:</span></p><blockquote><p><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Georgia, Times, serif; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 22px;">&nbsp;</span><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Georgia, Times, serif; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 22px;">If Encana lives up to its end of the bargain, the state will drop other criminal charges at a sentencing hearing in 11 months.</span></p></blockquote><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Chesapeake Energy is the nation’s second-largest producer of natural gas.</span></p><p> Mon, 14 Jul 2014 18:18:35 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 18361 at http://michiganradio.org Energy giant faces criminal trial on bid-rigging in Michigan lease sale Detroit "grand bargain" ballots were due today http://michiganradio.org/post/detroit-grand-bargain-ballots-were-due-today <p>Today was the deadline for Detroit retirees to vote on the city’s bankruptcy restructuring plan, known formally as a “plan of adjustment.”</p><p>The California firm tallying the votes had to receive them by today.</p><p>All creditors get to vote on the plan of adjustment. But pensioners’ votes are particularly key—especially when it comes to the future of the “grand bargain.”</p><p>That’s the deal to use more than $800 million in public and foundation money to minimize pension cuts, and protect the Detroit Institute of Arts’ collection from being sold to pay off creditors.</p> Fri, 11 Jul 2014 22:38:35 +0000 Sarah Cwiek 18353 at http://michiganradio.org Detroit "grand bargain" ballots were due today Central American children, if they come to Michigan, would stay just 2-4 weeks http://michiganradio.org/post/central-american-children-if-they-come-michigan-would-stay-just-2-4-weeks <p>Some 200 people and about a dozen media outlets stuffed into an airless high school cafeteria in Vassar, Michigan last night.</p><p>The small town of some 2,600 has been thrown into the center of the immigration debate during the past few weeks.</p><p>That's because a local juvenile center, Wolverine Human Services, is in talks to temporarily house as many as 120 of the unaccompanied Central American children flooding into the U.S.</p><p>And so far, Vassar appears very, very against that idea.&nbsp;</p> Thu, 10 Jul 2014 03:07:28 +0000 Kate Wells 18324 at http://michiganradio.org Central American children, if they come to Michigan, would stay just 2-4 weeks Michigan Supreme Court rules juvenile lifers not entitled to re-sentencing hearings http://michiganradio.org/post/michigan-supreme-court-rules-juvenile-lifers-not-entitled-re-sentencing-hearings <p>The Michigan Supreme Court says felons sentenced as juveniles to life without parole won’t get new sentences.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">That’s despite a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that says it’s cruel and unusual punishment.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The question was whether the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Miller vs. Alabama applies retroactively in Michigan to more than 300 inmates sentenced as juveniles to life without parole, or if it only applies to future cases.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">A four-to-three majority on the state Supreme Court says it would present too many financial and logistical barriers to go back and find lost witnesses and evidence for new sentencing hearings.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The Miller decision says mandatory life sentences for juveniles are unconstitutional because they don’t take into account each child’s circumstances.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">States have split on how to handle the Miller decision, which suggests the issue could yet be headed back one day to the U.S. Supreme Court.</span></p><p> Tue, 08 Jul 2014 20:46:04 +0000 Rick Pluta 18300 at http://michiganradio.org Michigan Supreme Court rules juvenile lifers not entitled to re-sentencing hearings Music duo Insane Clown Posse loses gang lawsuit http://michiganradio.org/post/music-duo-insane-clown-posse-loses-gang-lawsuit <p>DETROIT - A judge has dismissed a lawsuit aimed at scrubbing an FBI report that describes fans of the rap-metal duo Insane Clown Posse as a loosely organized gang.</p><p>Detroit federal Judge Robert Cleland says the government isn't responsible for acts by local police agencies that use the 2011 report.</p><p>Fans of Insane Clown Posse are known as Juggalos. The FBI report labels the Juggalos as a "loosely organized hybrid gang," although that description isn't part of the most recent national report on gangs.</p><p>Juggalos say their reputations have suffered because they have jewelry or tattoos with the group's symbol, a man running with a hatchet.</p><p>The lawsuit was dismissed last week. The Insane Clown Posse is Joseph Bruce, known as Violent J, and Joseph Utsler, known as Shaggy 2 Dope.</p><p> Tue, 08 Jul 2014 16:30:00 +0000 The Associated Press 18290 at http://michiganradio.org Music duo Insane Clown Posse loses gang lawsuit Protests Monday night against migrant children coming to Michigan http://michiganradio.org/post/protests-monday-night-against-migrant-children-coming-michigan <p><strong>UPDATE 10:49 PM&nbsp;</strong></p><p>Some 75 protestors and several police officers filled the front lawn of Vassar's city hall Monday evening.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p>Even though officials say these kids would stay in the juvenile camp for housing and school while they're going through the asylum, or more likely, the deportation process, lots of people expressed concern about what it would mean for the town.&nbsp;</p><p>"More crime," said Josh Barnes, of Vassar, when asked why he was worried enough to come out and protest.</p> Mon, 07 Jul 2014 20:31:53 +0000 Kate Wells 18284 at http://michiganradio.org Protests Monday night against migrant children coming to Michigan Michigan man with odd sentence stuck with life in prison http://michiganradio.org/post/michigan-man-odd-sentence-stuck-life-prison <p>JACKSON, Mich. (AP) - <a href="http://mdocweb.state.mi.us/OTIS2/otis2profile.aspx?mdocNumber=204922">Leon Echols</a> has spent his adult years in Michigan prisons for killing a man when he was 18. He's not eligible for parole until he's in his 80s, but he's been trying to convince authorities that his punishment doesn't fit the crime. &nbsp;</p><p></p> Sat, 05 Jul 2014 15:11:00 +0000 The Associated Press 18268 at http://michiganradio.org Michigan man with odd sentence stuck with life in prison