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Tracy Samilton / Michigan Radio

The state's energy regulating agency has issued some decisions that should relieve some of the financial burden on large companies that want to become greener.

Bell's Brewery near Kalamazoo wants to be a sustainable company for generations to come. So being able to produce cleaner energy on site would be a good thing.

Walker Modic is Bell's sustainability manager. He says he hasn't been able to make a business case for any green projects because of something called standby rates.

user ka_tate / Flickr

A former Detroit-area airport official is accused of receiving more than $5 million in kickbacks from contractors.

Federal prosecutors say it's one of the largest bribery cases in Michigan's Eastern District.

James Warner was charged Wednesday with conspiracy, bribery, money laundering and obstruction of justice. He was an infrastructure manager at the agency that runs Detroit Metropolitan Airport, from 2010 through 2014.

Flickr user Joe Gratz / HTTP://J.MP/1SPGCL0

The Michigan appeals court says a four-year prison sentence for a polite bank robber was unreasonable.

The court has granted a new hearing to James Gailey. Guidelines suggested a minimum sentence of 10 months in jail, but Jackson County Judge John McBain went much higher.

Gailey pleaded guilty to robbing a bank just two days before Christmas in 2014. He told a teller to put money into a cloth bag. Gailey didn't have a weapon, and he apologized several times. He was accused of robbing the same bank months later.

Sarah Cwiek / Michigan Radio

Teachers at a Detroit charter school are demanding a new contract by the start of next month.

Teaching staff at Southwest Detroit Community School have been bargaining with charter management since the fall. Teachers, parents and union leaders made the case for a June 1 deadline at a school board meeting Wednesday night.

Paula Reeves
Joe Linstroth / Michigan Radio

Last week, a 17-year old student opened fire at Santa Fe High School. He left 10 dead and 10 more injured.

With every mass shooting in the United States comes a cry to address the issue of mental health. Lawmakers say we need to identify these troubled kids — and get them mental health resources before something terrible happens.

An image of a silver bitcoin
Zach Copley / Flickr - http://bit.ly/1xMszCg

 

Cryptocurrencies, like Bitcoin or the more than 1500 other cryptocurrencies, are making some people rich. 

They're also opening up something new: your computer could be using its processor power, its memory, and your electricity to help make money for someone else. The process is called cryptojacking.

 

Michigan Association of Environmental Professionals

Michigan lawmakers passed a trio of bills Tuesday evening would create a panel to oversee the actions of the state Department of Environmental Quality. The legislation is now on its way to Governor Snyder’s desk.

Eddie Curlin
MDOC

In 2016, 29-year old Eddie Curlin had been charged with receiving and concealing stolen property when he devised a plan to wiggle out of his trouble with the law. 

He thought authorities would drop the charges if he spray painted racist messages on Eastern Michigan University buildings, and then pretended to be an informant who could help police find the vandal. 

The racist messages caused distress and anger among students, and the plan went awry. After police figured out he was the culprit, they also discovered unrelated identity theft crimes he'd committed.  

Dripping faucet
Aunt Jojo / Flickr - http://bit.ly/1xMszCg

 


 

The EPA held a national PFAS Summit in Washington on Tuesday to dive into issues surrounding the per-and-polyfluoroalkyl substances which have contaminated groundwater in sites across the country, including 31 known sites here in Michigan. 

The Spoke Folks, a Grand Rapids non-profit, wants to put "More Butts On Bikes" and help people maintain them.
user kconnors / morgueFile

Nearly 500 Detroit second-grade students have received new bikes, helmets, locks and bells after completing a bicycle safety program.

The bikes and other items were given Tuesday to the students by the Detroit Red Wings, Chevrolet and the Detroit Public Schools Foundation during a special assembly at Little Caesars Arena.

The students attend 10 schools in the Detroit Public Schools Community District. They have been practicing riding and learning road safety since April in their physical education classes as part of the Road & Bicycle Program.

Martin Brook
facebook.com/pg/brookforcongress/photos/

Last week, I spoke to a candidate for statewide office who lamented that she hadn’t been able to get out much among the people or keep up on important policy issues because she had to spend all day, every day on the phone, raising money. I also saw a candidate in a hotly contested congressional primary who told me the same thing.

Juliet Berger and other birders look through their binoculars at a warbler.
Emma Winowiecki / Michigan Radio

Mornings in Michigan is our series about morning routines and rituals around our state. This time of year, some people get up early to see migrating birds arriving in Michigan. Mike Kielb and his wife sometimes get up at 4 a.m.

LGBT flag
antiochla.edu / Antioch University

The state Department of Civil Rights has started accepting complaints from people who say they face discrimination based on their sexual orientation or gender identity. That’s after a state commission voted this week to change its interpretation of Michigan’s civil rights law.

David Kallman is an attorney who says he will defend people accused of LGBT discrimination. He says the commission has no right to suddenly change the rules.

Flickr User Thetoad / Flickr http://bit.ly/1xMszCg

Long-debated legislation in response to the Larry Nassar sexual assault scandal could move out of House committee. Nassar is the former Michigan State University sports doctor who will likely spend the rest of his life in prison for sexually assaulting his patients.

There are more than 30 bills in the committee in response to Nassar. The committee has made amendments to some of them – but others might not get a vote at all. Bills getting changes include those passed earlier this year by the Senate.

UC San Diego Health

The first major results are in from the American Gut Project. It’s a citizen science project to get a better understanding of the microbial communities inside our bodies.

People pay $99 to send in a sample – a swab from their hands, their mouth, or a stool sample.

Daniel McDonald is the project’s scientific director at the University of California-San Diego.

“So it turns out that most of the people sending us samples tend to send us fecal samples. We think it must just be the sexy thing to do,” he says. “But I think a lot of individuals are sending us these samples because they’re curious to learn a little bit more about these organisms that are important for your health that we are just beginning to understand in the scientific community.”

Study: States that expanded ACA saw drop in ICU admissions

May 22, 2018
ATS

A new study from the University of Michigan says states that expanded their Medicaid programs saw a drop in intensive care admissions, compared to states that did not.

Researchers looked at data from all adult hospital discharges from 2012 through 2014 in Washington and New Jersey -- which expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act -- and North Carolina, Nebraska, and Wisconsin, which did not. 

They found a 3.7 percent drop in ICU admissions for preventable conditions in the three states that expanded Medicaid compared to the two that didn't.

Group of five people in graduation cap and gown
User Kyle James / FLICKR - http://bit.ly/1xMszCg

Foster care advocates gathered in Lansing Tuesday to celebrate the tenth anniversary of Fostering Success Michigan.

The statewide initiative's mission is to help teens and young adults who've been in foster care graduate from college and build successful careers. 

Getting a college acceptance letter is exciting for most students, but especially for those who've spent time in the foster care system. That's because only 20 percent of graduating teens who've been in foster care make it to college. 

Multi-colored books.
Kimberly Farmer / Unsplash

The Education Trust-Midwest continues its quest to prod our state's leaders to do what is needed to improve our schools.

The nonpartisan research and advocacy organization is out with a new plan containing five specific ideas to reverse the decline in Michigan education and put the state on track to become a top-ten performer in education.

Passengers prepare to board the high-speed rail in Minneapolis
Micheal Hicks / FLICKR - HTTP://J.MP/1SPGCL0

The counties in Southeast Michigan cannot agree on a regional transportation plan. Regional unity, as is well known, is an uphill struggle in the state.

A new report, recently completed for Michigan Future, Inc., discusses another Great Lakes state that has had major success in creating a unified regional transportation for its citizens, among other things.

The new report by journalist Rick Haglund is called Regional Collaboration Matters: How Metro Minneapolis has forged one of the wealthiest and most livable metropolitan areas in the United States.

A poster shows how an adjusted SMART route will serve an Amazon warehouse in Shelby Township starting in September.
Sarah Cwiek / Michigan Radio

Macomb and Oakland counties’ leaders want the public to support a millage renewal for regional bus service that will be on the ballot this summer.

Mark Hackel and L. Brooks Patterson also want their constituents to know that millage has nothing to do with a plan to expand transit through the Southeast Michigan Regional Transit Authority (RTA) — a body both men say they now favor abandoning in favor of strengthening that existing regional bus service, the Suburban Mobility Authority for Regional Transportation (SMART).

Site for Sustainable Business Park
Kent County Department of Public Works

As population increases so does waste, filling up landfills at a faster rate. One solution to this problem is to rethink the old ways of managing solid waste.

The Kent County Department of Public Works is doing just that.

The County has decided to take land designated for a future landfill and use it instead for a "sustainable business park." The park will house companies and technology that reuse, repurpose, or convert solid waste, generating economic development while saving landfill space.

Carl Cox - Douglas Wojciechowski / Movement Music Festival

Movement Music Festival, formerly known as DEMF, returns to Detroit this Memorial Day weekend. The event, now in its 19th year, draws electronic music fans from around the world, and has since evolved to include other genres such as jazz, funk and hip hop.

BRIDGE MAGAZINE: Michigan Libertarian governor candidates decline to disclose financial details

May 22, 2018
income tax
ccPixs.com / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Neither of the Libertarian Party candidates for Michigan’s governor would release their 2017 tax returns to Bridge Magazine.

Bill Gelineau, who works at a Grand Rapids-area title agency, and John Tatar, a retired teacher from Wayne County’s Redford Township, both said they comply with state campaign finance laws. Anything beyond that, they said, is voluntary.

Libertarians in Michigan will choose their candidate for governor in a primary challenge, the first for the party in state history.

Capitol Building in Lansing, MI
Matthileo / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

The Michigan House is scaling back legislation inspired by the Larry Nassar sexual abuse case after Michigan State University agreed to a $500 million settlement with victims.

A House committee Tuesday adopted new versions of Senate-passed bills. Voting is expected this week.

BRIDGE MAGAZINE: Michigan Democrats El-Sayed, Whitmer disclose taxes; Shri Thanedar does not

May 22, 2018
income tax
ccPixs.com / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

At a recent Michigan Press Association forum, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Shri Thanedar effusively endorsed greater financial transparency of political candidates: “The quick answer is, absolutely, yes we must.”

Yet Thanedar, an Ann Arbor businessman whose business career includes booms and busts, has refused to release any details about his finances to Bridge Magazine, including his 2017 tax return.

Detroit
Nic Redhead / FLICKR - http://bit.ly/1xMszCg

Michigan's economic development board has awarded $618 million in tax incentives for a development project in Detroit that includes a 58-story building on the site of the iconic former J.L. Hudson department store.

Michigan State University sign
MSU

Michigan State University has named a former state Supreme Court justice, Robert Young, to be its general counsel as it continues to deal with the fallout from the Larry Nassar sexual abuse scandal.

The school's interim president, John Engler, announced Monday that Young will replace Kristine Zayko, who's been serving as acting general counsel.

Mosquitoes after a blood meal.
R. Rico-Hesse lab.

It’s not just the mosquito bite that’s a problem. When a mosquito bites you, it also drools on you.

Silke Paust is an assistant professor of pediatrics at Baylor College of Medicine and Texas Children’s Hospital.

“During this poking around phase, basically, and during the feeding, it automatically secretes saliva proteins," she says.

She says there are more than 100 proteins in mosquito saliva. Paust and her team found those proteins trigger a complex immune response.

BRIDGE MAGAZINE: Three of four Republicans share tax returns. Bill Schuette said he will soon.

May 22, 2018
income tax
ccPixs.com / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Three of the four GOP candidates for Michigan’s governor have released their 2017 federal income tax returns, following a financial disclosure request from Bridge Magazine.

The fourth, Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette, the presumed frontrunner, filed for an extension with the IRS, his campaign said, with 2017 returns to be released when they are available.

But it was real estate, not tax returns, that has escalated tensions in the last week between Schuette and Republican rival Lt. Gov. Brian Calley over Schuette’s finances.

Amazon
User soumit / flickr.com

Michigan is giving online retailer Amazon $4 million to ensure it opens another facility in the state.

The Michigan Strategic Fund board approved the incentive Tuesday. Seattle-based Amazon plans to create 1,000 full-time jobs at the $150 million fulfilment center in Gaines Township near Grand Rapids.

It will be Amazon's fourth warehouse in Michigan and first in the western part of the state. The state has authorized grants to each since late 2016.

Amazon will lease space on land owned by furniture maker Steelcase. A third party will build the center.

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