An eastern U.P. energy cooperative, Cloverland Electric, and its customers are one step closer to eliminating millions of dollars in extra payments to keep a power plant open in Marquette.
Groups that support adding LGBT protections to Michigan’s civil rights law say they’re confident state lawmakers will act this year. That’s despite some recent setbacks.
State House Speaker Jase Bolger, R-Marshall, says he wants to make sure the measure doesn’t infringe on religious liberties. And people working closely on the issue say some Republican lawmakers don’t want to include transgender people in the legislation.
ACLU of Michigan Director Kary Moss appeared this week on the Michigan Public Television program Off the Record. She says the business groups pushing for the measure do not have any interest in removing gender identity from the legislation.
“There’s not been debate in the business coalition,” said Moss. “All the members of the coalition agreed to support including both sexual orientation and gender identity. And I think too much has been made of the opinions of a few people who have been concerned about it.”
She said supporters’ focus is squarely on getting the measure passed during the Legislature’s “lame duck” session in December.
“The business community has come together in an unprecedented way. I think that’s created a lot of momentum. I think we’ve had a lot of Republicans who have indicated that the time is now and right and they’re supportive of it.”
Under current state law, people can be fired, denied employment, or denied housing because they are gay or transgender.
The American Civil Liberties Union has asked a federal court to order the state to recognize 300 same-sex marriages performed in Michigan last March.
The US Supreme Court has upheld Michigan’s ban on race- and gender-conscious admissions policies at public universities.
The ACLU and eight same-sex couples have sued the state. As Michigan Public Radio’s Rick Pluta reports, they say Michigan has to recognize their marriages while a court decision is under appeal.
The ACLU of Michigan is suing the state to force it to recognize the marriages of about 300 same-sex couples who got married last month. Michigan Public Radio’s Jake Neher caught up with one of the eight couples named as plaintiffs in that lawsuit… and their 13 children.