Category Archives: State Government

State Police cracking down on seat belt laws this weekend

Michigan State Police

The Michigan State Police is working to prevent accidents this holiday weekend. Additional patrols are set to watch highways for speeding, distracted driving, and tailgating. Lieutenant Michael Shaw said troopers are also running a “Click It Or Ticket” enforcement campaign. Continue reading

Senate introduces bill to remove the classification of “policewoman”

MI_-_State_Police_logo

The Michigan State Police may be getting a vocabulary change this summer.

Legislation has been introduced to remove the “policewoman” classification for female officers. Instead, they would be called “troopers,” like their male counterparts. Continue reading

State Senate unanimous in approving limits on e-cigarettes

e-cigs-rev-5

It would be a $50 fine to sell electronic cigarettes to minors under a bill that cleared the state Senate on Wednesday.

Critics say the misdemeanor and fine imposed under Senate Bill 231 won’t go far enough to limit e-cigarettes sales. Continue reading

Statewide teacher evaluation bill clears big hurdle in the state Senate

DSCN0123

A bill meant to improve teacher evaluations across Michigan has cleared the state Senate.

Similar legislation never got out of the Senate last year. Bill sponsor state Sen. Phil Pavlov (R-St. Clair) says Senate Bill 103 relies less on state standardized tests to evaluate teachers and administrators. Continue reading

Snyder opposes e-cigarette rules that don’t classify them as tobacco

blue-ego-ce4-3The state Senate could vote tomorrow (Tue.) on legislation that would ban the sale of electronic cigarettes to minors. But Governor Rick Snyder (R) says he’s against the bills and hopes lawmakers will adopt a different course.
Continue reading

Blue Ribbon group attempts to improve Michigan gaming

The Blue Ribbon Advisory Group is the newest regulatory body created by the DNR to protect and improve Michigan’s public gaming areas.

The group will examine hunting grounds and suggest ways to improve the habitat, and hunters’ overall experience.

Russ Mason is a spokesman for the DNR. He says the effort is more important than some people may realize

“And it’s important for people to recognize that these aren’t just acres that are sittin’ there. These are acres that are critical for the timber industry, the mining industry. These aren’t just a bunch of trees on public land. These are really valuable assets that we need to think about and care for in a very deliberate fashion, and move forward. Because they are, perhaps the catalyst for Michigan’s economic recovery.”

Mason says the group is going to have a lot to consider

“The U.P and the Northern Lower 40 acres of land per man, woman and child. Southern Michigan we’re essentially .04 acres. There are counties in Southern Michigan without a square inch of public hunting land. That needs to be different if we want Michiganders to care about the one thing that makes Michigan special in my view, and that’s their natural resources. ”

Mason says the Group is expected to wrap up its work within 18 months.

Senate panel votes to scrap prevailing wage

707125.0.senatee

A state Senate committee has adopted a Republican proposal to scrap prevailing union wage requirements on publicly funded construction projects. Michigan Public Radio’s Rick Pluta tells us the bills now go to the Senate floor. Continue reading

Senator Smith arraigned on three felony charges

Michigan Senate voting board lists Senator Virgil Smith (D-Detroit) as absent. Credit: Jake Neher/Michigan Public Radio Network

Michigan Senate voting board lists Senator Virgil Smith (D-Detroit) as absent. Credit: Jake Neher/Michigan Public Radio Network

State Senator Virgil Smith (D-Detroit) has been charged with multiple gun and assault felonies. He’s accused of hitting his ex-wife and shooting 10 bullets into her car.
Continue reading

Democrats hint at income tax ballot drive in 2016

budgetcalculator

Some Democrats are hinting that a ballot campaign could be in the works to bring the graduated income tax to Michigan. State Representative Jim Townsend says he’d like to see a petition drive to put a question on the 2016 ballot to amend the state constitution. Continue reading

Getting to the bottom of rising national student loan debt

College Students
The school year winding down means graduation ceremonies are around the corner.

Whether graduating students are leaving college, or getting ready to attend, one thing on many students’ minds is student loans. Continue reading

State Senate to consider prevailing wage repeal next week

The state Senate will move forward with legislation to end prevailing wage requirements in Michigan. The state and many communities require that workers on publicly-funded construction projects get union-level pay and benefits. Continue reading

Snyder, lawmakers sort through Proposal 1 wreckage

bad-yellow-line-roadjpg-55a2be0a87eeea1d_large

Voters said no Tuesday to Proposal One by a margin of almost four-to-one. But, as unhappy as people were with the ballot question, they’re still unhappy with the state of Michigan’s roads. So Governor Rick Snyder and lawmakers say they’ll go back to work on finding money for roads – and they will heed the lessons of Proposal One. Continue reading

Voters reject Snyder road funding ballot proposal

voters-turn-out-for-michigan-primary-elections-c238bfa5496bdcccMichigan voters have soundly rejected Proposal One — Governor Rick Snyder’s two (b) billion dollar plan to fund road repairs without siphoning money from schools and local governments.

The loss sends the governor and the Legislature back to the bargaining table because almost everyone still agrees the roads are bad.
Continue reading

Voters to decide fate of Proposal One and road funding

rick-snyder-mugjpg-446cf7790e6a2ea6Since January, Governor Rick Snyder has been traveling the state with his rock collection – more accurately, hunks of concrete, asphalt, and brick from crumbling roads and bridges.

“This is a piece of Michigan road,” he says he holds up a chunk of concrete twice as big as his fist. “This is the kind of thing that can fall on your vehicle or go through your windshield. That’s scary folks.”
Continue reading

Court: Utility has to justify smart meter fee

DSC_0097

The Michigan Court of Appeals says a state utility-regulating board should call in a power company to justify a fee it charges customers who refuse to use high-tech smart meters. Continue reading