WUOMFM

Politics & Government

Stories about politics and government actions

Stateside 1.19.2018

16 hours ago

Women and girls who were sexually assaulted are getting their chance to make their voice heard in the sentencing hearing of former sports doctor Larry Nassar, including Olympians. Today on Stateside, we hear the latest from Michigan Radio’s Kate Wells. And then, we visit Bridge Magazine and its Truth Squad project.

To find individual interviews, click here or see below:

Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

As Michigan gets ready to vote for governor in November, Bridge Magazine is also preparing. They’re gearing up for the Truth Squad to keep candidates accountable.

John Bebow, president of the Center for Michigan, which publishes Bridge Magazine, joined Stateside to discuss what’s ahead for the journalism outfit.

Listen above for the entire conversation.

governor snyder
Michigan Municipal League / FLICKR - http://bit.ly/1xMszCg

Since 1950, the Michigan Legislature has only overridden a governor’s veto four times. This week was one of those times.

In July of 2017, Gov. Rick Snyder vetoed a bill that would speed up the implementation of a tax cut for people who trade in their car for a new one, known as the “sales tax on the difference” bill. This week, the state Legislature voted overwhelmingly to override that veto.

Bond hearings beginning for Iraqi detainees

Jan 19, 2018
steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Bond hearings have started to be held for some of the nearly 300 Iraqi nationals who have been detained by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. And a lot more will start next week.

Earlier this month, U.S. District Court Judge Mark Goldsmith ordered the release by February 2 of the detainees who have been held for more than six months, unless the government can show that they are a flight or public safety risk.

Willie Brooks
Oakland County

The Detroit Wayne Mental Health Authority has named Willie Brooks its new CEO.

This is actually the second time Brooks has been offered the job as head of the state’s largest community mental health services provider.

The Michigan state capitol building
Thetoad / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

The state Legislature went over the governor’s head Wednesday. It approved a veto override – something that hasn’t happened in Michigan since 2002.

The bills speed up the phase-out of the sales tax on the value of a trade-in when buying a new vehicle. Governor Rick Snyder vetoed them last year because of budget concerns. But Speaker of the House Tom Leonard says he’s not worried about the budget. 

 

“Since I’ve been here it seems like, that we’ve continued to put the state’s budget over the individual budgets of each of our hardworking citizens,” he said.

Virginia Gordan

Scores of so-called DREAMers and their supporters marched in freezing temperatures in downtown Detroit today. 

The protestors chanted, "What do we want? The DREAM Act! When do we want it? Now!"

They called for immediate passage of the DREAM Act as a condition of keeping the government from shutting down.

DREAMers are undocumented immigrants who were brought to the U.S. illegally as children.

Michigan State Capitol Building
Phillip Hofmeister / Wikimedia Commons

For the first time in Gov. Rick Snyder's tenure, a legislative chamber has voted to override one of his vetoes.

The Republican-led state Senate voted unanimously Wednesday to support a tax cut for people who trade in their car for a new one. If the GOP-controlled House does the same, it would be just the fourth veto override in Michigan in the last 66 years.

Sarah Cwiek / Michigan Radio

A Southgate family is now living above Detroit’s Central United Methodist Church.

They’ve sought sanctuary there in a last-ditch effort to save the father from a deportation order.

lower half of gymnast on balance beam
Flickr user James Thomas / Creative Commons

About 140 women and girls have accused former sports doctor Larry Nassar of sexually assaulting them while he worked for Michigan State University and the U.S. women's Olympic gymnastics team. More than 80 women and girls are scheduled to speak this week at his sentencing hearing. 

Senior news analyst Jack Lessenberry tells Morning Edition host Doug Tribou about what has stood out to him so far about the victims' statements. 

SCREENSHOT FROM ENBRIDGE REPORT TO THE STATE

Tired of waiting for the state, environmentalists are offering their own plan for shutting down an oil pipeline that runs beneath the Mackinac Straits.

In recent years, concerns the aging pipeline could leak prompted calls from various groups to stop oil flowing through the pipeline. The Line 5 pipeline is owned by Enbridge Energy, which is a corporate sponsor of Michigan Radio.

Wikimedia Commons

Some DTE Energy customers say the utility is bullying them for refusing smart meters, and they want the state Legislature to do something about it.

A state House committee heard testimony Tuesday about complaints that DTE wrongly shut off their power. Most of them say it’s because they didn’t want to use a smart meter.

Jamie Chimner of Cheboygan said her power was recently cut off by DTE. She said it was because she didn’t want a smart meter on her house.

Surgery tools
Stanford EdTech / Flickr, http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

A federal judge has dismissed a sex charge against two Detroit-area doctors accused of performing female genital mutilation on young girls.

Doctors Jumana Nagarwala and Fakhruddin Attar are charged with six federal counts, including conspiracy to commit female genital cutting.

The charges are related to a procedure performed on two 7-year-old girls from Minnesota in February 2017.

But U.S. District Court Judge Bernard Friedman ruled Sunday that the pair did not commit conspiracy to transport a minor with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity.

Helping your adversary to help yourself.

It’s a political tactic and we’re seeing it right now in Michigan’s Republican primary for governor.

Lt. Governor Brian Calley is running for governor. But, it looks like he’s polling behind fellow Republican Attorney General Bill Schuette.

Schuette has been touting his conservative credentials including an endorsement from President Donald Trump.

Wikimedia Commons

Southeast Michigan regional leaders have been meeting for months to develop a new regional transit plan, but at least one of those leaders says there’s nothing he can get behind yet.

Macomb County Executive Mark Hackel says there’s no reason to build any system that relies on buses, suggesting those systems will soon be “obsolete.”

Job application and pen
flazingo.com / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

When it comes to unemployment insurance, Michigan is the worst state in the Midwest for unemployed workers. A recent report from the Michigan League for Public Policy says the maximum benefits paid to the state's unemployed workers are the lowest in the region.

This Week in Review, Weekend Edition host Rebecca Kruth and senior news analyst Jack Lessenberry talk about what Michigan needs to do to clean up its act.


Stateside 1.12.2018

Jan 12, 2018

Today on Stateside, state Sen. Casperson, R-Escanaba, defends proposed legislation that would give businesses more power within the Department of Natural Resources. We also hear the extreme evolution of video game music, and how one Michigan artisan transforms kayaks and canoes into art.

wetlands
Flickr/barbaragaillewis / http://michrad.io/1LXrdJM

The Michigan Legislature is considering three bills that would change how the state determines environmental rules.

CREDIT SAKUTO / FLICKR - HTTP://BIT.LY/1XMSZCG

The Michigan legislature is considering three bills that would change how the state of Michigan determines environmental regulations. They would create an environmental rules committee that could reject or change any rule the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality issues.

The legislation would also create an appeals board to review permits and an environmental science advisory board, which the state once had, but was ended a decade ago. 

Pearl Pirie / FLICKR - http://bit.ly/1xMszCg

Yesterday, the state of Michigan went through a process called the Consensus Revenue Estimating Conference. University and governmental economists met to discuss where the economy is going and what its projections mean for the state budget.

CafeCredit.com / Flickr Creative Commons HTTP://MICHRAD.IO/1LXRDJM

Michigan's unemployment insurance system is not keeping up with other Midwestern states, according to a recent report from the Michigan League for Public Policy, a policy institute that advocates for low-income people. 

The League's report said Michigan falls short among eight Midwestern states in providing a safety net to unemployed workers looking for jobs.

Looking up into the rotunda of the Michigan Capitol.
user cedarbenddrive/Flickr / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Returning money to taxpayers was the talk as the Legislature opened its 2018 session today. One of the first orders of business is dealing with an issue created by the federal tax overhaul, which zeroed out the personal exemption. That could result in Michiganders paying $840 million more in 2018 state taxes than they would otherwise.

Senate Democratic Leader Jim Ananich says the question is how to deal with it.  

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Flint is edging closer to getting out from under state oversight.

Gov. Rick Snyder put the city of Flint under receivership in 2011 due to a financial emergency.  Under a series of emergency managers, the city’s elected officials had their powers stripped.

But today, at Flint Mayor Karen Weaver’s request, the state oversight board has voted to return local control to the city’s elected officials. State Treasury officials must give the final say, but that’s expected. 

ellenm1 / FLICKR - http://bit.ly/1xMszCg

It’s been a worrisome few months for the families of 116,000 lower-income kids in our state, the ones who rely on the Children’s Health Insurance Program for their health care.

Even though CHIP has bipartisan support, it’s been lost in the congressional fight over tax reform and the budget. Its funding expired last September.

capitol building
Wikimedia Commons

The federal tax overhaul could affect Michigan's tax code. The federal personal exemption has been eliminated, but Michigan has state deductions tied to it. Gov. Snyder wants to restore the state's personal exemption, so that Michigan doesn't collect more tax than it would have before. 

Michigan Radio's Morning Edition host Doug Tribou and Jack Lessenberry discuss what this could mean for Michigan taxpayers.

Sarah Cwiek / Michigan Radio

Detroit swore in a crop of city officials to new, four-year terms Tuesday.

Unlike four years ago, when the city was just about to emerge from bankruptcy and was still still under state control, this time nearly all are incumbents who have done the job before.

That includes Mayor Mike Duggan, who says he’s back for another full, four-year term.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

One of the key roles of a state attorney general is protecting consumers.

A guest editorial in Bridge Magazine today accuses Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette of a weak track record of consumer protection.

Tracy Samilton

There was little disagreement about supporting President Donald Trump's agenda at last night's first primary debate among Republicans running for Michigan's 11th Congressional District seat. 

Governor Rick Snyder has proposed a plan to offset tax increases on Michigan families as a result of the federal tax overhaul. The main component is to allow Michigan taxpayers to continue to claim a four thousand dollar personal exemption on their state taxes.

farm field
Julie Falk / FLICKR - HTTP://J.MP/1SPGCLO

Michigan U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow says getting high speed internet to rural communities in Michigan is a priority for her.

Stabenow said she plans to tackle this issue as part of the new federal farm bill.

“If we want to truly expand, create jobs all over Michigan, and the quality of life that we want in small towns as well as big cities, you have to have high speed internet,” she said.

Pages