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New York International Auto Show

The 117th edition of the New York International Auto Show is in full swing. Among the cars getting a lot of attention is the Dodge Challenger Demon, which boasts 840 horsepower and zero to 60 acceleration in 2.3 seconds.

Paul Eisenstein is covering the show for the Detroit Bureau, where he is publisher. Stateside gave him a call to talk muscle cars, Tesla, and Trump's effect on the auto industry.

The Michigan Senate in Lansing.
Lester Graham / Michigan Radio file photo

For more than 40 years, royalties from oil and mineral rights on State of Michigan-owned land have gone to the Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund. The Trust Fund is controlled by a non-partisan board. It uses the money to buy park land and to help cities and counties develop public recreation areas.

More than 30 years ago voters passed a constitutional amendment that barred the Legislature from raiding that fund.

Wikimedia Commons

Michigan State University President Lou Anna Simon has announced that a full review of the University's Title IX program will begin this fall.

Title IX requires gender equity in education and in school sports. It's also supposed to protect students from sexual harassment and assault.

Members of Michigan Radio’s news team were in Cincinnati this week, on Wednesday, April 12, to accept the station’s first-ever Scripps Howard Award for the station’s on-going coverage of the Flint water crisis.

The Scripps Howard - Jack R. Howard Award for Radio Coverage honors the best in-depth and investigative reporting of a single event or issue that was broadcast or covered online by a radio station or radio network.

Two summers ago, something happened that gave parents nightmares throughout the Detroit area. A 20-year-old camp counselor at a Jewish community center was discovered to have been secretly photographing little boys naked and posting them on a Russian child porn website.

He also had written vivid fantasy descriptions of doing things to them, though a massive investigation turned up no evidence that he had ever touched a child.

Richard Masoner / Flickr - http://michrad.io/1LXrdJM

A Lima township man has been sentenced to probation and ordered to pay $3,000 in fines for striking and killing an Ann Arbor triathlete with his car. Terry Lee Lacroix pleaded guilty in March to a misdemeanor charge of a moving violation causing death.

Michigan State Police say the 70-year-old Lacroix was trying to pass another vehicle when he hit Karen McKeachie on Dexter-Chelsea road in Washtenaw County in August. McKeachie was a 17-time national champion in triathlon.

A hackathon for Lake Erie

Apr 14, 2017
A cyanobacteria bloom on Lake Erie in 2013.
Mark Brush / Michigan Radio

Pollution and other problems plague areas all over the Great Lakes region, and they can make drinking or swimming dangerous. There’s plenty of blame to go around for this – city water utilities, agriculture, and politicians to name a few.

Now an unlikely industry has joined the search for solutions: technology is taking on Lake Erie.

The recalled toys.
Target

Target stores voluntarily recalled several potentially dangerous toys on Thursday, just before the Easter weekend.

The Hatch & Grow Easter Eggs, Easter Grow Toys, and Hatch Your Own Dino toys were included in the nationwide recall. Customers are encouraged to keep those toys away from small children, and can return them to any Target store for a full refund.

Michigan Radio will welcome NPR’s popular news quiz show Wait Wait…Don’t Tell Me! to Detroit’s Fox Theatre for a live show on Thursday, June 15 at 7:30PM.

Now in its 20th season, Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me! is NPR’s Peabody Award-winning quiz show.  Host Peter Sagal leads a rotating panel of comedians, humorists and journalists, listener contestants and celebrity guests through a comic review of the week’s news, along with the help of Judge and Scorekeeper Bill Kurtis.

 Red Berenson, coaches the University of Michigan's hockey team.
MGoBlog / Flickr

Gordon “Red” Berenson"  loved the game from the start. When he was a six-year old kid in Regina, Sasketchewan, for Christmas his parent gave him new skates, gloves, and shin pads.

He was so excited, he called his best friend on the party line – at 6 a.m. When his friend’s mom answered, she said, “Do you know it’s 6 a.m.?”

Berenson replied, “Yes -- but this is important!”

He played most of his games outside, where the prairie winds make it feel like you’re skating uphill. By 18 he was so good, the Montreal Canadiens wanted him to turn pro. When he decided to go to the University of Michigan instead, the Canadiens' general manager warned him, “If you go to an American college, you’ll never become a pro.”

Berenson went anyway.

Ninety seconds into his first game at Michigan, he skated end to end and scored his first goal. He scored 78 more, including 43 his senior year, still a Michigan record. He was the best player in the country.

JOHN AUCHTER / AUCHTOON.COM

ARTIST'S POV: Legislation was recently introduced in the state House to make Michigan a "constitutional carry" state. House Bills 4416-4419 would relax gun laws to allow many Michiganders to conceal firearms without having to get a concealed pistol license. It's kind of a melding of concealed carry with less restrictive open carry rules.

Hospital bed
(photo by Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio)

Mayor Mike Duggan and CEOs from three Detroit health systems announced a new job training program for city residents.

 

The Detroit Medical Center, Henry Ford Health System and St. John Providence are partnering with the city and Oakland University’s nursing school to train and employ 240 Detroiters in healthcare over the next year.

 

According to Studley, the problem with Lansing's sanctuary city resolution is that it did not include a clear definition of what a sanctuary city and that it raised more questions than it answered.
Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio file photo

Lansing's City Council did an about-face last night. 

The Council reversed its earlier unanimous decision to declare Lansing a "sanctuary city". The 5-2 vote means the city is not a sanctuary for immigrants, particularly undocumented immigrants.

The Trump Administration has threatened to punish sanctuary cities by withholding federal funds.

The Michigan and Lansing Chambers of Commerce had been urging Lansing's City Council to rescind that earlier resolution.

Rich Studley, the president and CEO of the Michigan Chamber of Commerce, joined Stateside to explain why they rejected the resolution.

A woman in a dark room
https://www.flickr.com/photos/alachuacounty/12178605035/

 

 

When mental illness strikes a loved one, the first person many families turn to is often a faith-based leader: a priest, a minister, a rabbi, or an imam.

The Ninth Annual Muslim Mental Health Conference aims to help clergy do a better job of helping members of their congregation who are suffering from mental illness.

The conference will run April 13-14th at the Michigan State University Department of Psychiatry.

Joe Gratz / Flickr Creative Commons http://michrad.io/1LXrdJM

A Detroit-area doctor has been charged with performing genital mutilation on two young girls from Minnesota.

Federal prosecutors say Dr. Jumana Nagarwala was arrested Thursday, days after two 7-year-old girls identified her as the person who performed medical procedures on them at a Livonia clinic in February.

The FBI says the girls were accompanied to the clinic by their mothers.

Female genital mutilation of minors is illegal in the U.S. unless there is a legitimate health reason.

Valentine Vodka

Take that, Russia, Poland, France!

Those countries, famous for their vodka, were also-rans against a small Ferndale distillery in the World Drinks Awards for 2017.

Valentine Vodka of Ferndale was named the “World’s Best Varietal Vodka” for the second straight year.

Rifino Valentine, president and founder of Valentine Distilling Company, joined Stateside to explain both the award and the vodka responsible for it.

Food hubs can help small, local farmers connect with bigger distributors.
Friends of Family Farmers / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

The Next Idea

What would it mean for smaller farmers and growers to sell their crops to big distributors or for consumers to know that the head of lettuce in their salad came from a nearby farm?

Lincoln

 

The big auto shows are a chance for automakers to show everyone what they're all about.

 

Automakers are making huge investments in electric cars and autonomous driving technology.  But muscle cars and big, luxurious SUVs were the stars at this week's New York International Auto Show.

 

 

Detroit News business columnist Daniel Howes spoke with Cynthia Canty about the New York show’s “shameless celebration of size and horsepower.”

Flickr Creative Commons http://michrad.io/1LXrdJM

The American Civil Liberties Union in Michigan is suing U.S. Customs and Border Protection, alleging the agency failed to respond to a Freedom of Information Act request. 

The ACLU branch is seeking documentation outlining the "on-the-ground" implementation of President Trump's first executive order that temporarily banned immigrants from seven predominantly Muslim countries.  The group says the government has failed to substantively respond to the request. 

Many schools in Michigan have grappled with whether they should dump Native American mascots and nicknames.

Plenty of things can stand in the way: history, tradition, emotion. But one Michigan tribe wants to make sure money isn’t the barrier to change.

Belding has been the Redskins since the 1940s. The entry of the school and the field boast giant stones engraved with Belding Redskins and an image of a Native American chief in a headdress.

Conor Ryan plays Christopher McCandless in the new musical "Into The Wild"
Michele Anliker Photography

25 years ago this month, a recent college graduate named Christopher McCandless hitchhiked to Alaska. He then hiked into the wilderness, using an old mountain road called the Stampede Trail.

A few months later, on Sept. 6, a hunter found him dead inside an old bus.

Writer Jon Krakauer told this puzzling story in his book Into the Wild which was later adapted into a 2007 film directed by Sean Penn and starring Emile Hirsch.

Now, the story of the young man who called himself "Alexander Supertramp" has been turned into a stage musical.

Into The Wild opens tomorrow night (Friday, April 14) at the Encore Musical Theatre Company in Dexter.

LAW
user southerfried / morguefile

The Michigan Supreme Court convened in Lansing this week.

Whether or not a student can sue a religious school under the Persons with Disabilities Civil Rights Act was one question before the Court Thursday.

Bettina Winkler was a student at Notre Dame Marist Academy middle school. She was denied admission to the affiliated high school. Winkler says it’s because she has a learning disability.

Nicholas Roumel is Winkler’s attorney. He said Winkler was the only middle school student that wasn’t accepted to the high school.

Lindsey Smith / Michigan Radio

The Berrien County Prosecutor's office has filed two felony charges against former Benton Harbor Area Schools Superintendent Leonard Seawood.

Seawood worked at Benton Harbor Area Schools from the fall of 2011 until the spring of 2015, when he was put on a paid leave while the school board conducted an investigation.  Four months later, Seawood agreed to resign for an $80,000 payout.

Seawood was charged today with one count of embezzlement and one count of obtaining money by false pretenses.

Lindsey Smith / Michigan Radio

About 500 people showed up to a public hearing in Big Rapids hosted by Michigan’s Department of Environmental Quality last night. Almost every one of them spoke against Nestle’s plan to pump 400 gallons of water a minute to sell under the company’s Ice Mountain bottled water brand. 

I’ve never met Chris Campbell, an attorney in Traverse City, but I’ve gotten thoughtful emails from him many times over the years. Mr. Campbell, who grew up in Bay City, loves this state. 

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

People walking near part of the Flint River will see, and likely smell, a major dredging project this summer.

About a quarter mile segment of the Flint River will be dredged to remove tons of soil contaminated with coal tar from a gas plant that closed a century ago.    The plant operated from the mid-1800’s to the late 1920’s. Consumers Energy bought the old coal plant back in the 1920’s.   

Jim Innes with the MDEQ is the project manager.    He says coal tar does present a potential health issue for people.

Members of the public submitted public comment for hours before Lansing City Council voted to rescind the resolution naming Lansing a "sanctuary city"
Tyler Scott

At a special meeting Wednesday night, the Lansing city council voted 5-2 to rescind a largely symbolic resolution calling Lansing a “sanctuary city.”

Kathie Dunbar was one of two council members who voted to keep the largely symbolic resolution on the books. She said she was embarrassed by the council’s decision to rescind the measure. The original resolution to become a sanctuary city had been unanimously approved nine days earlier.

vintage cars at Ypsilanti Automotive Heritage Museum
F.D. Richards / Flickr

President Trump’s proposed budget would eliminate the federal funding for a group that works to preserve Michigan’s automotive history. The MotorCities National Heritage Area covers 16 counties and includes museums, parks and entertainment venues, including the Henry Ford Museum, the Michigan International Speedway and the Michigan Theatre in Jackson.

Michigan Attorney General's office

A judge in the criminal sex abuse case against former MSU sports doctor Larry Nassar has issued a new order to prohibit attorneys and witnesses from speaking publicly about the case.

The judge says it's necessary to prevent a "carnival atmosphere" and an unfair trial for Nassar.

Nassar is accused of sexually abusing girls he was treating.

Nassar also faces civil lawsuits filed by  more than 80 other women who say he sexually abused them.

Attorneys for those women say the gag order also applies to them, and is unconstitutional.

Darko Stojanovic / Creative Commons

A new report from a public health watchdog called the Leapfrog Group ranks Michigan the 25th best state for hospital treatment.

Of the 79 hospitals graded, 25 earned an "A," 20 earned a "B," 31 earned a "C," and three earned a "D." These ratings are based on a hospital's reported errors, as well as systems in place to prevent errors.

Michigan dropped six spots since the last Leapfrog Hospital Safety report in the fall of 2016.

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