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The Associated Press

Judge's gavel
Flickr user Joe Gratz / FLICKR - HTTP://J.MP/1SPGCL0

A former state lawmaker who wants a seat on the Detroit City Council has a clear path to the ballot.

The Michigan Supreme Court is interested in the case of Virgil Smith. But nothing will happen before the Nov. 7 election.

Smith had agreed not to seek elective office for five years when he pleaded guilty to shooting at his ex-wife's car. But that part of the deal was thrown out by a Wayne County judge, who said it was unconstitutional.

Michigan National Guard

The Michigan Army National Guard is sending more than 1,000 soldiers to the South to help people affected by Hurricane Irma.

Michigan State University sign
MSU

A law firm has been hired to review Michigan State University's Title IX program.

The school said Friday that the Husch Blackwell firm was hired this month as part of its commitment to "strengthening efforts to combat sexual violence."

The firm is to focus on Title IX compliance, crisis and advocacy support services, prevention and education programs, awareness and outreach, and campus feedback.

Sparty
steve carmody / Michigan Radio

"Go Green" has some added meaning in East Lansing today.

Michigan State University officials say the university has reached an important fundraising goal.

Six years ago, MSU officials quietly launched the “Empower Extraordinary” campaign.

The campaign to raise $1.5 billion dollars to fund expansion of the East Lansing university’s business, medicine and music programs became public three years ago.

As of today, university officials say the campaign has met its goal, a full year ahead of schedule.

A grass carp.
Asian Carp Regional Coordinating Committee

Scientists say they've confirmed the discovery of grass carp eggs in a tributary of Lake Erie.

Grass carp are among four species of Asian carp that pose a threat to the Great Lakes. The most feared are silver and bighead carp, which eat plankton and could destabilize food chains. But grass carp are also a problem because they eat huge amounts of valuable plants.

The Great Lakes Fishery Commission says state, federal and university scientists analyzed eggs collected from the Sandusky River in Ohio earlier this summer.

They've now concluded they were grass carp eggs.

nancybechtol / Morguefile

Police in southwestern Michigan arrested people who blocked traffic to protest the Trump administration's announcement that it would dismantle a program that protected hundreds of thousands of young people from deportation.

A boy wears special glasses to view the eclipse
Adam Fagen / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Grand Valley State University's Regional Math and Science Center is collecting eclipse glasses for a 2019 total solar eclipse that will be visible from the Pacific Ocean to parts of South America.

The Holland Sentinel reports that glasses used to view the sun during the August 21 eclipse over a long stretch of the United States will be sent to schools in South America and Asia through Astronomers Without Borders.

flickr user FatMandy / http://michrad.io/1LXrdJM

Michigan is more than doubling the capacity of a special job-training program for qualified prisoners who are nearing their release.

The state has opened a second "vocational village" in as many years, this time at the minimum-security Parnall Correctional Facility near Jackson.

Inmates are earning certificates for in-demand fields such as machining, masonry and truck driving. The initiative is aimed at reducing recidivism.

Invasive plant Japanese stiltgrass
Tom Potterfield / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

The state Department of Natural Resources says an invasive grass from Asia has been found in Michigan for first time.

The DNR said Friday that Japanese stiltgrass was recently found on private property in Scio Township, near Ann Arbor in Washtenaw County.

The invasive plant originates in Asia and is a thin, bamboo-like grass with jointed stems and well-spaced leaves.

The DNR is asking landowners and others spending time outdoors to be on the lookout for Japanese stiltgrass and to report its location to the state agency.

Jean-Sébastien Guénette / Flickr - http://michrad.io/1LXrdJM

The University of Michigan -- concerned about problems caused by burrowing groundhogs -- is using dry ice to suffocate the rodents in their dens beneath the school's North Campus.

The Ann Arbor News reports Thursday that officials say the burrowing could undermine the foundations of structures, porches and pavement.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

Police were forced to temporarily close a Detroit street last night as a crowd protested the death of a teenager who crashed an all-terrain vehicle after a state trooper shocked him with a Taser.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow expects hurricane relief will be a top agenda item when Congress returns to work after Labor Day.

Michigan’s senior senator says the country needs to “come together” to help people in Texas and Louisiana suffering in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey.

Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore
Rhonda Noren / Flickr, http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

An Upper Peninsula nonprofit group has received a federal grant for a "green infrastructure" project intended to protect Lake Superior waters near Marquette.

The Environmental Protection Agency awarded the $288,500 grant to the Superior Watershed Partnership.

The project will relocate an open-channel drain in Marquette that discharges storm water across a public beach and into the lake. The drain's outfall will be moved to an adjacent wetland.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Gas prices in Michigan are expected to jump about 20 cents in the next day thanks to Hurricane Harvey.

Patrick DeHaan with GasBuddy.com says the storm’s disruption of refineries along the Gulf coast will have a ripple effect reaching Michigan.

REAL ID driver's license
Michigan Secretary of State

Michigan is set today to start issuing driver's licenses that residents eventually will need to board domestic flights if they don't have passports or other accepted documents.

New ID standards were created after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. Starting in October 2020, compliant driver's licenses or state IDs will be needed to fly or to visit federal buildings, nuclear plants and military bases unless other acceptable documents are provided.

Male deer
coloneljohnbritt / Creative Commons http://michrad.io/1LXrdJM

If you're a hunter who shoots deer or related animals in other states, be advised that there are new rules about bringing their parts into Michigan.

The tougher regulations are intended to prevent the spread of chronic wasting disease among Michigan's deer, elk, and moose.

The illness attacks the central nervous system of animals in the deer family and can eventually kill them.

Nine free-ranging deer in Michigan have tested positive since April 2015.

The sinkhole in Macomb County.
Bryce Huffman / Michigan Radio

Officials say about 1.5 million gallons of sewage flowed into a trench used to repair a sewer line that collapsed and created a sinkhole north of Detroit.

The Macomb County Public Works Office says no one was in the trench at the time of the incident overnight Monday. There were no injuries.

The office said Wednesday about 9 feet of sewage initially filled the bottom of the trench but it later diminished to 6 feet. It says no sewage entered any local waters. It's being pumped out and returned to the sanitary sewer system.

USS John S. McCain
Public Domain

Sailors from Michigan, Illinois and Ohio are among ten who are missing after a U.S. warship collided with an oil tanker off Singapore Monday. 

April Brandon of Oakland County was told that her son, Ken Smith, is missing. She was visited by two officers Monday.  

Brandon says her 22-year-old son grew up in Novi, Michigan, but moved to Norfolk, Virginia, as a teen with his father.

Illinois U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis says Logan Palmer's mother told him that her son is missing. Davis says Palmer comes from a "patriotic family" in the Decatur, Illinois, area.

Ex-state Senator Virgil Smith, Jr.
senatedems.com

The Michigan appeals court won't stop a former state lawmaker from seeking a seat on the Detroit City Council.

Virgil Smith had agreed not to seek elective office for five years when he pleaded guilty to shooting at his ex-wife's car. But that part of the deal was thrown out by a judge, who said it was unconstitutional.

In a 2-1 decision Tuesday, the appeals court says the judge made the right call. Judges Deborah Servitto and Michael Kelly say it would be "coercion" to allow prosecutors to try to negotiate a politician's future as part of a plea deal.

bottom of chalkboard, with an eraser and chalk sitting on the ledge
User alkruse24 / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

The Michigan Department of Education has announced it will reduce the overall score students need to receive on an English-proficiency test after an earlier change made it more difficult for students to transition out of English learner status.

oil drill
creative commons http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Environmental officials are investigating an oil spill that fouled a suburban Detroit drainage ditch and left residents complaining of a petroleum smell.

Ryan Schwarb of the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality says the spill reported Wednesday traveled about 1,000 feet down the Teske Drain in Clinton Township. Absorbent booms were placed in the waterway to collect the oil.

Bruno Mars
Daniel Gregory / creative commons http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Bruno Mars is donating $1 million from his Michigan concert to aid those affected by the Flint water crisis.

Mars told the audience Saturday at his show in Auburn Hills that he and tour promoter Live Nation are redirecting funds from the concert to The Community Foundation of Greater Flint, a charity.

In 2014, Flint switched water sources and failed to add corrosion-reducing phosphates, allowing lead from old pipes to leach into the water.

BYTEMARKS / FLICKR - HTTP://J.MP/1SPGCLO

LANSING, Mich. (AP) - The state of Michigan says it has reversed 70% of unemployment benefit fraud cases and is refunding $20.8 million after people were wrongly accused of collecting excessive benefits.

The Unemployment Insurance Agency announced the results of a review Friday. It reviewed more than 62,000 cases for people who were assessed a fraud penalty and did not seek an appeal. About 44,000 cases were reversed.

Michigan has been under fire for a computer system that wrongly churned out cases of fraud. Last month, it dropped criminal charges against 186 people.

The Calumet
shipwrecklog / Flickr - http://michrad.io/1LXrdJM

The U.S. Coast Guard says a Great Lakes freighter has run aground in the St. Mary's River, which runs between the U.S. and Canada along Michigan's eastern Upper Peninsula.

The Coast Guard says the 629-foot (192-meter) U.S. vessel named Calumet left a steel facility in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, and was heading to its next port when it ran aground late Wednesday near Sugar Island. No injuries were reported.

Nick Lyon
Michigan Department of Health and Human Services

The head of Michigan's health department is asking a judge to force prosecutors to release additional evidence in their case against him in connection to the Flint water crisis.

An attorney for Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Director Nick Lyon has filed motions asking a judge to compel the release of requested discovery material and to issue subpoenas for the state Office of Inspector General, state Office of Auditor General, Lyon's own department, and McLaren-Flint hospital.

The old library entry at Marygrove College in Detroit.
Marygrove College Library / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

A liberal arts school in Detroit is shutting down its undergraduate programs next year due to declining enrollment. Beginning in January only master's degree programs will be offered at Marygrove College.

The college, which is known for its graduate teacher training program, expects that the demand for Masters degrees in teaching will lead to the success of the new business model. 

Selfridge Air Base
U.S. Air National Guard

A training exercise at a military base northeast of Detroit could include sirens, loudspeakers, and simulated gunfire.

Officials at Selfridge Air National Guard base in Harrison Township say the training will be held Wednesday and people living nearby might hear some of the exercise.

Amor Ftouhi
Federal Bureau of Investigation

Federal prosecutors have told a judge that a Tunisian-born man who stabbed a police officer at a Michigan airport subscribes to Osama Bin Laden's ideology and celebrated the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.

The assertions were made in a court filing against 49-year-old Amor Ftouhi of Montreal, Quebec.

chrysler logo
Ricardo Giaviti / Flickr / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

A former Fiat Chrysler financial analyst, who federal prosecutors say helped illegally funnel worker training funds into the bank accounts of Fiat-Chrysler and UAW employees  over a number of years,  has pleaded guilty.

Jerome Durden entered pleas on Tuesday in the U.S. District Court in Ann Arbor to charges of conspiracy to defraud the U.S. as well as  failure to file a tax return. As part of a plea agreement, he faces up to 37 months in prison. Sentencing is scheduled for Dec. 12.

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