Politics & Government

Stories about politics and government actions

Courtesy of City of Detroit, Mayor's Office

Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan delivered his State of the City address this week.

Detroit News columnist Daniel Howes says Duggan didn't talk much about the auto industry, but instead focused on entrepreneurship and how to support small businesses.

This reflects much of Detroit, and Michigan's deeper history, according to Howes.

"Both Detroit and Michigan's roots were planted by entrepreneurs and really the Michigan that a lot of people knew and think back on, the golden age if you will, was the fruit of the entrepreneurial spirit," says Howes.

Michigan House Republicans

Governor Snyder delivered his proposed budget for the next fiscal year yesterday and Lt. Governor Brian Calley was at his side. Calley presented the transportation portion of the administration's budget.

After the announcement, some critics noted there's not much of a backup plan if voters turn down a ballot proposal in May to increase road funding.

Calley says the backup plan is the status quo.

Update 2/12/2015:

 The Michigan Senate adopted legislation early today to establish a March 15th, 2016, Republican presidential primary.* It could position the state to join a Midwest super-primary sometimes dubbed the “Big Ten” primary.

user cedarbenddrive / Flickr

Governor Rick Snyder has signed a budget-cutting executive order, and presented a spending plan for the coming fiscal year. Schools, universities, and local governments were spared cuts as part the order to help clear away a deficit.

Saunteel Jenkins / LinkedIn

Detroit's City Council is re-interviewing two finalists for an open seat, after failing to reach a super-majority of votes as required by the city's charter.   

A city council seat has been open since November 7, when Councilwoman Saunteel Jenkins resigned to take over a non-profit group in Detroit.

wikipedia

Michigan Senator Gary Peters says he supports the President asking Congress to authorize war against a terrorist group.  

But he says the request should have come sooner.

The U.S. has been carrying out a military air campaign against the Islamic State for six months.

Michigan Radio

It’s estimated that in the United States some 22 veterans commit suicide every day.

“It is a tragedy, one that we have to deal with,” Michigan Democratic Senator Gary Peters said. “In my mind we have a sacred obligation to take care of those who have served us overseas, so we need to address it immediately.”

This week, Jack and Emily discuss what we can expect from Governor Rick Snyder’s budget address later this morning as well as some high points from Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan’s State of the City address last night.

Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

Last night Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan gave his first State of the City address since the municipality emerged from bankruptcy.

"Well, as we gather here tonight, I can sum up the condition of our city in a phrase we haven’t been able to use for years. Detroit is now on the road to recovery."

Duggan outlined progress made in getting families into once abandoned houses, demolishing blight, and putting up street lights.

taxcredits.net

Governor Snyder is set to deliver his budget proposal for the next fiscal year tomorrow morning in Lansing. The just released Michigan Radio/Public Sector Consultants poll takes a look at where the voters of Michigan would like to see the state invest.

michigan.gov

Governor Rick Snyder will present his budget proposal tomorrow, including plans to tackle a deficit. But he will also propose some new spending on public safety.

A lot of the initiatives will focus on preventing and prosecuting sexual assaults. The governor will propose an initiative that targets university campuses, and an additional $3.4 million to make sure rape kits are processed in a timely fashion.

“I think everyone would agree that sexual assault has to be dealt with, and there’s going to be a priority placed on those kinds of crimes,” said Colonel Kristie Etue is the Michigan State Police director.

Three months ago, Gretchen Driskell was elected to a second term in the Michigan House of Representatives. Yesterday, she announced that next year, she will run for Congress.

There was a time when such an early announcement would have sparked derision and ridicule. The election is almost two years away. 

Budget tiles
Simon Cunningham / Flickr

A Michigan Radio/Public Sector Consultants poll of 600 likely voters in Michigan found that if they were making today's tough budget decisions, a majority would invest more in job creation, and most would make cuts to prisons.

The findings were released today - a day before Governor Snyder is expected to announce where he thinks money in the state budget should be spent, and where it should be cut.

Today on Stateside:

  • Governor Snyder will present his recommended budget for 2015-2016 on Wednesday morning and Detroit Free Press Lansing reporter Paul Egan joins us to discuss.
  •   Third grade teacher from Keith Elementary in Walled Lake speaks about her first book: Diary of a Real Bully.
Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

Anybody worried about the water coming out of their taps in Flint can get a city employee to come test their water personally – on the city’s dime.

That’s according to about a dozen or so letters the city says it is sending out to people who’ve complained about their water quality in city meetings or in letters to city hall.

Michigan's Capitol.
Graham Davis / flickr

The state of Michigan is facing a revenue shortfall, and cuts will have to be made, but one state senator says education is not on the chopping block.

More from the Associated Press:

Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

Just three months after the November elections, a Democrat has announced she’ll run against Republican Congressman Tim Walberg.

Second-term Michigan State Representative Gretchen Driskell (D-52nd) is challenging Walberg in the Seventh Congressional District.

Mlive

Traverse City has become the second city in Michigan to recognize Indigenous People's Day on the same date as Columbus Day.

Angeline Antoine is a member of the group Idle No More Michigan that put the resolution before the Traverse City City Council.

She says Columbus never set foot on American soil -- and he mistreated the natives he came into contact with.

"If we can recognize these truths, then we can open dialogue for reconcialiation and break down the barriers between the native and non-native community," she says.

morguefile

An organization of Michigan biotech companies is pushing to fix for a law they say unfairly burdens medical device companies with a requirement to hire a pharmacist.

The Pharmacy Control and Drug Practice law, Public Act 280 went into effect Sept. 30, 2014.

Governor Rick Snyder was released from the hospital this morning.

He sent this tweet:

He spent four days being treated for a blood clot in his leg. It was one of the effects of keeping his leg immobile while he heals from a torn Achilles tendon. The governor has been advised to curtail unnecessary travel and keep the weight off his injured leg. The governor does plan be at the state Capitol Wednesday to present his budget proposal to lawmakers.

Lars Plougmann / Creative Commons

Democratic state lawmakers are again hoping to allow no-reason absentee voting in Michigan.

Michigan Secretary of State Ruth Johnson has said recently that more people who have died or moved out of state must be removed from the state’s voter registration database before lawmakers will agree to stop putting conditions on who can vote absentee.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

Flint officials expect to announce this week a decision on hiring a consultant to help with the city’s water problems.

Only one company applied for the job. 

City officials want an outside eye to evaluate its water treatment process. 

Bomb threat, crash investigated at Coast Guard station

Feb 8, 2015
Facebook/U.S. Coast Guard

GRAND HAVEN, Mich. (AP) - A man has been arrested after driving a pickup through a U.S. Coast Guard station gate in western Michigan following a bomb threat.

The Coast Guard says Ottawa County dispatchers received a phone call about 6 a.m. Sunday from a man claiming he had a bomb in his truck and was going to blow up the station in Grand Haven, about 30 miles northwest of Grand Rapids.

The pickup crashed through the gate as evacuation notifications were taking place.

A Michigan senator wants the death penalty in  Michigan for cases in which a cop is killed. This Week in Review, Jack and Zoe discuss the proposal’s timing and what would need to happen for it to become a reality.


Tim Gee

An organization of Michigan biotech companies is looking for a permanent fix for a law they say unfairly burdens medical device companies.  

The Pharmacy Control and Drug Practice law went into effect in September. It was originally intended to improve the safety of drug products sold by compounding pharmacies. 

ToledoOH.gov

TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) - The mayor of Toledo, Ohio, has died five days after suffering cardiac arrest while driving during a snowstorm.

A city spokeswoman, Stacy Weber, says Mayor D. Michael Collins died Friday at the University of Toledo Medical Center.

The 70-year-old Collins was in his first term as mayor of Ohio's fourth-largest city. He was a former police officer and City Council member.

City officials say he was found unconscious after crashing his SUV into a utility pole Sunday when he suffered cardiac arrest.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

Update: Friday, 10:38 a.m.:

The Detroit Free Press has an update on the Governor's condition:

Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder had a "good restful night" in an Ann Arbor area hospital after he was hospitalized Thursday with a blood clot in his right leg, where he has been wearing a protective boot due to a torn Achilles tendon, a spokeswoman said Friday morning.

Wayne County

Wayne County Executive Warren Evans says the county's deficit is higher than feared, and if nothing is done, the county is on track to add $70 million each year to the $88 million deficit.

But the head of the County Commission, Gary Woronchak, says the county can dig itself out of the hole.

Still, he says there are painful decisions ahead. 

The county's revenues are a third less than needed to pay the bills.  

LGBT flag
antiochla.edu / Antioch University

Each Thursday, we discuss Michigan politics with Susan Demas, publisher of Inside Michigan Politics, and Ken Sikkema, former Senate Majority Leader and Senior Policy Fellow at Public Sector Consultants.

Today, we spoke about Governor Snyder's decision not to appeal a judge's ruling that says Michigan must recognize the roughly 320 same sex marriages that occurred in 2014. We also talked about where the state may be headed on LGBT rights.

Here's our conversation:

Jake Neher / MPRN

It looks unlikely that a proposal to allow the death penalty in Michigan will go anywhere this term.

A resolution in the state Senate would allow the death penalty for people convicted of murdering police officers in the line of duty.

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