Politics & Government
8:20 am
Wed May 8, 2013

The week in Michigan politics: Merit Curriculum, Buena Vista, Rogers and FBI, flooding disaster

Week in Michigan politics interview for 5/8/13

This week in Michigan politics, Christina Shockley and Jack Lessenberry discuss possible changes to the Michigan Merit Curriculum, finances and teacher layoffs at Buena Vista schools, the possibility of Michigan Representative Mike Rogers being the next FBI director, and Governor Rick Snyder's declaring that nearly a quarter of Michigan is in a state of disaster from flooding.

Possible High School graduation requirement changes

A Michigan House panel approved changes to the Michigan Merit Curriculum.

That’s the state’s high school graduation requirements that were put in place in 2006. The changes that were approved yesterday would waive the required year of a foreign language and algebra II, among other things.

Buena Vista schools in financial trouble

Buena Vista schools, near Saginaw, laid off its teachers Monday and canceled classes Tuesday and Wednesday.

The school district owes the state more than $400,000 after it took state aid for a program it no longer ran. Teachers voted to work without pay this week, but that wasn't enough.

Lessenberry says, “This look likes an ideal situation that would have brought an emergency manager in before it got this far and nobody did that. The teachers have offered to finish the rest of the year for the sake of the kids, without being paid, and the school board doesn’t want them to do that.”

Michigan Rep. Mike Rogers endorsed to be next FBI director

The FBI Agents Association has endorsed Michigan Representative Mike Rogers to be the next FBI director.

Rogers is a former FBI agent and has spent a lot of time in the House Intelligence Committee.

Lessenberry says Democrats might like it if Rogers becomes the next FBI director.

“[Rogers] is the strongest potential [Republican] candidate for the open U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Carl Levin who is retiring,” Lessenberry says.

U.S. Rep. Gary Peters (D-M14) recently announced he will make a run for Levin's seat in the U.S. Senate.

Snyder declares a quarter of Michigan a disaster area from flooding

Governor Rick Snyder has declared almost a quarter of Michigan to be in a state of disaster because of last month’s storms, snow, and flooding.

Lessenberry says this announcement means counties that are disaster areas can get state aid, and allows them to apply for FEMA disaster aid.