industry http://michiganradio.org en Recycling that typical household battery is not as easy as you might think http://michiganradio.org/post/recycling-typical-household-battery-not-easy-you-might-think <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">I was surprised to find out recently that you can’t recycle household batteries in Ann Arbor anymore. I used to collect them in a little steel can, but Recycle Ann Arbor stopped taking them.</span></p><p>From <a href="http://www.recycleannarbor.org/?module=Page&amp;sID=drop-off-station-whats-accepted">Recycle Ann Arbor’s website</a>:</p><blockquote><p>Alkaline household batteries do not contain hazardous materials and may be disposed of in the trash.</p> Thu, 26 Jun 2014 13:00:00 +0000 Mark Brush 18156 at http://michiganradio.org Recycling that typical household battery is not as easy as you might think Could German-style paid apprenticeships work in Michigan? http://michiganradio.org/post/could-german-style-paid-apprenticeships-work-michigan <p align="LEFT">In the United States, high school students are often told they need a four-year college degree to get a good job. That can mean racking up a lot of debt.</p><p align="LEFT">But in Germany, students can choose a paid apprenticeship. Now, Michigan officials hope to import the system here.</p><p align="LEFT">The apprentice system in Germany is extensive. You can become a land surveyor, a bank clerk, a robotics technician... so it's not hard to find someone who's done it.</p><p align="LEFT">When&nbsp;Sophie Stepke was 16, she was&nbsp;a typical teen. She had no idea what she wanted to do for a living.</p><p align="LEFT">She could have postponed a decision by staying in high school. Instead,</p><blockquote><p align="LEFT">I went for an apprenticeship as a professional land surveyor. So for three years, I worked with an employer, I went to school, and I basically became a professional land surveyor. So I was staying out there building streets and building houses and all that kind of stuff.</p></blockquote><p align="LEFT"> Mon, 10 Feb 2014 04:49:18 +0000 Tracy Samilton 16371 at http://michiganradio.org Could German-style paid apprenticeships work in Michigan? Blast at US Steel plant near Detroit kills worker http://michiganradio.org/post/blast-us-steel-plant-near-detroit-kills-worker <p>ECORSE, Mich. (AP) -<a href="http://www.ussteel.com/uss/portal/home">United States Steel Corp.</a> says an explosion at a plant near Detroit has killed one worker, and operations have halted while an investigation begins.&nbsp;</p><p></p> Sun, 15 Dec 2013 20:19:47 +0000 Associated Press 15698 at http://michiganradio.org Blast at US Steel plant near Detroit kills worker Manufacturing a commuter bike in Detroit http://michiganradio.org/post/manufacturing-commuter-bike-detroit <p>There are a couple of relatively new companies making bikes in Detroit.</p><p><a href="http://www.shinola.com/">Shinola</a> makes them (along with watches, leather goods, and journals). <a href="http://detroitbicyclecompany.com/index.htm">Detroit Bicycle Company</a> makes 'em.</p> Fri, 02 Aug 2013 19:56:50 +0000 Kyle Norris 13813 at http://michiganradio.org Manufacturing a commuter bike in Detroit Industrial tax roll back headed to Michigan Senate http://michiganradio.org/post/industrial-tax-roll-back-headed-michigan-senate <p>A plan to roll back taxes...that some criticize, but others rely on...is expected to clear a major hurdle this week. A legislative committee is expected to wrap up hearings on the plan, and send it to the floor of the state Senate.<br /><br /> Maufacturers say there would be more hiring and investment in factories if not for Michigan&rsquo;s unique tax on industrial equipment. The Senate plan would phase out the tax &ndash; starting next year -- by 2022.</p><p>But the Republican proposal would not replace all the revenue lost to local governments that rely on the tax as a source of funding for services. Communities with a big industrial presence would be hit the hardest.</p><p>They say with no guarantee that all the revenue will be replaced, they could be forced to cut services more than they have already, or increase other taxes to make up the difference. Mon, 30 Apr 2012 18:56:13 +0000 Rick Pluta 7255 at http://michiganradio.org Industrial tax roll back headed to Michigan Senate Republican state lawmakers plan phase-out of Michigan tax on industrial property http://michiganradio.org/post/republican-state-lawmakers-plan-phase-out-michigan-tax-industrial-property <p>The first hearing will be held tomorrow on a Republican plan to phase out taxes on most industrial equipment in Michigan.</p><p>Local governments collect about $400 million in revenue a year from the industrial property tax.</p><p>Lieutenant Governor Brian Calley helped design the plan to get rid of the tax over the next several years. He says Michigan is unique in how it taxes industrial property -- and he says it&rsquo;s driving investments to other states and countries.</p><p>&ldquo;So at the end of the day, it&rsquo;s about jobs and removing the penalty for investing in Michigan,&rdquo; Calley said.</p><p>But local leaders say the way the phase-out is drafted now, it would force disinvestment in schools, and city services. That&rsquo;s because it does not replace all the revenue lost to local governments.</p><p>Some state lawmakers like Senate Democratic leader Gretchen Whitmer agree.</p><p>&ldquo;At best, they only intend to replace 81 percent of the dollars,&rdquo;Whitmer said. &ldquo;So does that mean that they are going to cut our fire services 19 percent? They&rsquo;re also going to cut our police service 19 percent? They&rsquo;re going to cut our schools an additional 19 percent? How is that made up?&rdquo;</p><p>The communities that would be most affected are industrial cities with the most factories. That includes Michigan&#39;s third-largest city, Warren.</p><p>Warren mayor Jim Fouts says the city stands to lose $12 million a year in revenue if the tax is repealed.</p><p><em>&ldquo;It would be absolute disaster,&quot; said Fouts, who said he&#39;d be forced to cut public safety and other vital services.&nbsp; </em></p><p><em>&quot;It&rsquo;s a good example of short-term thinking without looking at the long-term consequences, which are draconian consequences.&rdquo;</em></p><p>Fouts says Lansing has recently shifted more costs and mandates to local governments, while also cutting off their sources of revenue. He sent a letter expressing his concerns to Governor Snyder.</p><p> Tue, 17 Apr 2012 21:35:21 +0000 Rick Pluta & Sarah Cwiek 7078 at http://michiganradio.org Republican state lawmakers plan phase-out of Michigan tax on industrial property Michigan group travels to Turkey to tout state's emerging garment industry http://michiganradio.org/post/michigan-group-travels-turkey-tout-states-emerging-garment-industry <p>A small group of Michigan designers and economic development officials are headed to Turkey for a week-long trade trip.</p><p>The group believes Michigan&rsquo;s garment industry is up-and-coming, and they hope the trade trip will spur on partnerships with Turkey&rsquo;s textile suppliers and buyers.</p><p>Eleanor Fuchs believes the garment industry &quot;has the potential to be a multi-million if not billion dollar industry here in Michigan.&quot;</p> Thu, 02 Feb 2012 18:19:12 +0000 Jennifer Guerra 6068 at http://michiganradio.org Michigan group travels to Turkey to tout state's emerging garment industry Living next to heavy industry, pt. 1 http://michiganradio.org/post/living-next-heavy-industry-pt-1 <p>A little more than 50 years ago, Delores Leonard and her husband moved into their red brick ranch in Detroit.</p><p><em>&ldquo;I selected it because the sun comes up over there in the morning and I was thinking about my flowers.&rdquo;</em></p><p>They&rsquo;ve raised their two kids here and now they have four grandchildren and five great-grandkids and they all live nearby.</p><p>But she says on any given day... she doesn&rsquo;t know what she&rsquo;ll smell when she steps outside.</p><p><em>&ldquo;Sometimes it&rsquo;s a kerosene odor. Sometimes it&rsquo;s a horrible stench, like at a slaughterhouse. Sometimes, you&rsquo;re out in public and people will say, &lsquo;where do you live?&rsquo; And they&rsquo;ll say,&rsquo; oh yes, I know that area, that stench, I don&rsquo;t see how those people live there.&rsquo;&rdquo;</em></p><p>&ldquo;There&rdquo; is zip code 48217. It&rsquo;s a corner of Southwest Detroit packed with heavy industry.</p><p>There&rsquo;s the state&rsquo;s only oil refinery, owned by Marathon Petroleum. The salt mine. The city&rsquo;s wastewater treatment plant. DTE&rsquo;s coal-burning power plant. Severstal Steel. And many more.</p><p>Delores Leonard grew up just a few streets over, in River Rouge. She remembers asking her dad why people were covering their cars with tarps.</p><p><em>&ldquo;And he said it was because of the fallout, the pollution. Well, if they&rsquo;re covering their cars so the paint pigmentation won&rsquo;t peel, then what happens to the person who lives and who&rsquo;s breathing all this stuff?&rdquo;</em></p><p>Like Delores Leonard, a lot of people have lived here their whole lives.</p><p> Tue, 15 Nov 2011 05:18:22 +0000 Rebecca Williams 4987 at http://michiganradio.org Living next to heavy industry, pt. 1 Plant shutdowns in Japan continue to disrupt U.S. auto industry http://michiganradio.org/post/plant-shutdowns-japan-continue-disrupt-us-auto-industry <p>The auto industry disruptions triggered by <a href="http://www.npr.org/2011/03/28/134912696/radiation-in-seawater-may-be-spreading-in-japan">Japan&#39;s earthquake and tsunami</a> are about to get worse, the Associated Press reports. From the AP:</p><blockquote><p>In the weeks ahead, car buyers will have difficulty finding the model they want in certain colors, thousands of auto plant workers will likely be told to stay home, and companies such as Toyota, Honda and others will lose billions of dollars in revenue. More than two weeks since the natural disaster, inventories of crucial car supplies - from computer chips to paint pigments &ndash; are dwindling fast as Japanese factories that make them struggle to restart.</p><p>Because parts and supplies are shipped by slow-moving boats, the real drop-off has yet to be felt by factories in the U.S., Europe and Asia. That will come by the middle of April.</p></blockquote><p>Michigan Radio&#39;s Tracy Samilton <a href="http://news.michiganradio.org/post/japanese-car-exports-us-threatened-tsunami">first reported</a> on how the natural disasters in Japan could disrupt the U.S. auto industry on March 11th. Mon, 28 Mar 2011 11:00:22 +0000 Zoe Clark 1806 at http://michiganradio.org Plant shutdowns in Japan continue to disrupt U.S. auto industry Green group finds contaminated tap water in Ann Arbor http://michiganradio.org/post/green-group-finds-contaminated-tap-water-ann-arbor <p>The <a href="http://static.ewg.org/reports/2010/chrome6/html/home.html">Environmental Working Group</a> (EWG) says it commissioned a study that tested tap water in 35 cities across the United States and found a cancer causing chemical in 31 of the cities they tested.</p><p>In Michigan, the EWG tested for evidence of hexavalent chromium in Ann Arbor's water supply and found the chemical at .21 parts per billion. The group says a proposed "safe" level in California is .06 parts per billion.</p><p>The group says:</p> Mon, 20 Dec 2010 21:04:19 +0000 Mark Brush & Steve Carmody 654 at http://michiganradio.org Green group finds contaminated tap water in Ann Arbor Researcher sees some signs of hope in Michigan's economy http://michiganradio.org/post/researcher-sees-some-signs-hope-michigans-economy <p>Researchers at the Kalamazoo-based <a href="http://www.upjohninst.org/">Upjohn Institute</a> predict Michigan’s economy is stabilizing, but caution it will be a long road to a full recovery.</p><blockquote><p>“We have to realize that what Michigan is coming out of is not a transformed economy, although all of us would like to think that’s true. We’re coming out a leaner economy, a little bit meaner and little bit more advanced but in fact just kind of a smaller version of what we were before, in my opinion.”</p></blockquote><p><a href="http://www.upjohninstitute.org/staff/erickcek.html">Senior Regional Analyst George Erickcek</a> says full recovery will depend on the state’ ability to meet the demand for trained workers in growing industries. <a href="http://pod.michiganradio.org/documents/GRoutlook_dec.pdf">In a presentation</a> to leaders in Grand Rapids Wednesday, Erickcek said 25 to 34 year-olds are not achieving the same education levels as the generation before them. That’s the case in Michigan and the nation. Wed, 08 Dec 2010 16:50:36 +0000 Lindsey Smith 500 at http://michiganradio.org Researcher sees some signs of hope in Michigan's economy