Cheyna Roth


Before becoming the newest Capitol reporter for the Michigan Public Radio Network, Cheyna Roth was an attorney. She spent her days fighting it out in court as an assistant prosecuting attorney for Ionia County. Eventually, Cheyna took her investigative and interview skills and moved on to journalism. She got her masters at Michigan State University and was a documentary filmmaker, podcaster, and freelance writer before finding her home with NPR. 
 
Very soon after joining MPRN, Cheyna started covering the 2016 presidential election, chasing after Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton, and all their surrogates as they duked it out for Michigan. Cheyna also focuses on the Legislature and criminal justice issues for MPRN. 
 
Cheyna is obsessively curious, a passionate storyteller, and an occasional backpacker. 
 
Follow her on Twitter at @Cheyna_R
 

Jennifer Weingart / WVPE Public Radio

Businesses in Michigan are not required to provide paid parental leave to employees. As part of the weekly series MichMash… Cheyna Roth and Jake Neher speak with Lieutenant Governor Garlin Gilchrist about his efforts to change that.

Jennifer Weingart / WVPE Public Radio

The auto industry is making an effort to manufacture the medical supplies and equipment desperately needed during the coronavirus pandemic.

As part of the weekly series MichMash, Cheyna Roth and Jake Neher talk about what that effort actually looks like.

Jennifer Weingart / WVPE Public Radio

The coronavirus pandemic has been and will continue to be disastrous for small businesses across Michigan. As part of the weekly series MichMash, Cheyna Roth and Jake Neher highlight some of the local efforts to help businesses get through this crisis.

Jennifer Weingart / WVPE Public Radio

The spread of COVID-19 is forcing many cultural organizations and artists to cancel events and close their doors to the public.

As part of the weekly series MichMash, Jake Neher and Cheyna Roth speak with WDET’s Ryan Patrick Hooper about what this means for the future of the arts in Michigan.

Jennifer Weingart / WVPE Public Radio

Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer has ordered all public, private, and boarding schools across the state closed to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. They will stay closed until at least April 6th.

As part of the weekly series MichMash, Cheyna Roth and Jake Neher talk about what this will mean for families.

Jennifer Weingart / WVPE Public Radio

Ex-offenders face many obstacles when they’re released from prison. It’s especially hard for people with felonies on their records to find a place to live.

As part of the weekly series MichMash, Cheyna Roth and Jake Neher talk about how that problem plays out  in Michigan.

Brian Charles Watson / Wikimedia Commons

There’s a new push to close a wide gap in state funding for universities. Oakland University says no school should get less than $4,500 per student.

As part of the weekly series MichMash, Jake Neher and Cheyna Roth talk about what you need to know about higher education funding in Michigan.

Water levels are rising along Michigan’s shorelines. It’s a fact that has dominated the headlines recently – including stories of people’s houses potentially falling into the Great Lakes. But for those living in landlocked areas of the state, you might not realize that those costal problems affect you too.

As part of the weekly series MichMash, MLive’s Cheyna Roth and WDET’s Jake Neher take a statewide look at the rising waters.

Jennifer Weingart / WVPE Public Radio

In her response to the State of the Union Address Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer said many Michiganders aren’t feeling the benefits of a growing economy.

As part of the weekly series MichMash, Jake Neher and Cheyna Roth talk with Michigan State University economist Charles Ballard about whether that’s true.

You can hear their full conversation with MSU economist Charles Ballard on the MichMash podcast, available wherever you get your podcasts.

Jennifer Weingart / WVPE Public Radio

Cell phones are now allowed in all Michigan state courts.

As part of the weekly series MichMash Jake Neher and Cheyna Roth talk about why that matters to just about everyone in Michigan.

Jennifer Weingart / WVPE Public Radio

 Local officials across Michigan are concerned about what a recession would mean for their communities.

As part of the weekly series MichMash Cheyna Roth and Jake Neher talk about what cities are doing to prepare for a possible economic downturn in 2020.

Jennifer Weingart / WVPE Public Radio

It’s been a year since the Michigan Legislature’s record-breaking lame duck session that saw more than 300 bills fly through the House and Senate. 

Lawmakers approved controversial measures making it harder to launch successful citizen petition campaigns, removing protections for wetlands, and gutting the state’s new minimum wage and paid sick leave laws. As part of the weekly series MichMash, Cheyna Roth and Jake Neher explain that the state is still grappling with the implementation of many of those laws.

Jennifer Weingart / WVPE Public Radio

It’s been a year since the Michigan Legislature’s record-breaking lame duck session that saw more than 300 bills fly through the House and Senate. 

Lawmakers approved controversial measures making it harder to launch successful citizen petition campaigns, removing protections for wetlands, and gutting the state’s new minimum wage and paid sick leave laws. As part of the weekly series MichMash, Cheyna Roth and Jake Neher explain that the state is still grappling with the implementation of many of those laws.

Jennifer Weingart / WVPE Public Radio

Online gambling and sports betting could soon be legal in Michigan. As part of the weekly series MichMash, Jake Neher and Cheyna Roth talk about why gambling is becoming more of a sure bet at the state Capitol.

Jennifer Weingart / WVPE Public Radio

Michigan lawmakers have left the state Capitol for a two-week break.

As part of the weekly series MichMash, Cheyna Roth and Jake Neher say that’s despite the fact that they haven’t yet reached a deal to restore critical funding in the state budget.

You can learn more about MichMash at wdet.org/michmash. Or subcribe to MichMash wherever you get your podcasts.

DANK DEPOT / FLICKR CREATIVE COMMONS

 Several Michigan communities just said no to recreational pot shops.

As part of the weekly series MichMash, Jake Neher and Cheyna Roth say it’s probably too early to jump to conclusions about what that means for the industry.

You can also subcribe to MichMash wherever you get your podcasts. And read more about this episode at wdet.org/michmash

Jennifer Weingart / WVPE Public Radio

Applicants to the new Independent Redistricting Commission will have the chance to be a part of Michigan history – and redraw the state’s political district lines.

As part of their weekly series MichMash, Michigan Public Radio Network’s Cheyna Roth and WDET’s Jake Neher break down the selection process, how to apply, and what comes next.

You can subscribe to MichMash wherever you get your podcasts. Read more at wdet.org/michmash

Jennifer Weingart / WVPE Public Radio

Some Michigan lawmakers want to limit the powers of the governor’s office.

As part of the weekly series MichMash, Jake Neher and Cheyna Roth observe that Governor Gretchen Whitmer has been flexing her constitutional muscles lately, and Republicans aren’t happy about it.

A bipartisan group of lawmakers say school busses need to be more secure.

A package of bills would make it a crime to enter a school bus without the permission of the driver. In some cases, it would be a felony.

Some lawmakers want to prevent the Department of Health and Human Services from issuing rules restricting access and use of vaping products. Lawmakers debated the bill (HB 5019) in front of a House committee Tuesday.

This comes after MDHHS issued emergency rules banning the sale and manufacturing of flavored vaping products with more than 2% nicotine. 

Jennifer Weingart / WVPE Public Radio

The month-long United Auto Workers strike against General Motors could soon come to an end. The union and the automaker recently reached a tentative contract agreement.

As part of the weekly series MichMash Cheyna Roth and Jake Neher speak with a reporter who has been covering the strike about what it has meant for the state and local economies.

You can learn more at https://wdet.org/series/michmash/ or subscribe to MichMash wherever you get your podcasts.

The findings of a $100,000 study were improperly influenced by lobbyists. That’s according to a new state Auditor General report.

According to emails and documents obtained by the Detroit Free Press, the Michigan Aggregates Association was a primary gravel lobbying firm that influenced the study.

Updated Dec. 2, 2019 at 10:58 a.m.:

After being delayed one month, new policies, which will make it easier for families to receive public assistance, have now taken effect. 

The governor will now have to decide if the criminal justice system should stop automatically treating 17-year-olds as adults.

A bipartisan package of bills is now headed to Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s desk. They would still give prosecutors discretion to charge 17-year-olds as adults for serious crimes, but that would no longer be the way they are automatically treated.

Jennifer Weingart / WVPE Public Radio

Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer and lawmakers are starting the process of restoring some funding Whitmer vetoed in the new state budget.

As part of the weekly series MichMash, Jake Neher and Cheyna Roth talk about how Michiganders are feeling the cuts throughout the state.

You can read more at WDET.org/MichMash and you can listen again or subriscribe to the MichMash podcast wherever you get your podcasts.

Bills that would raise the age of the juvenile court’s jurisdiction from 17 to 18-years-old are one step closer to the governor’s desk.

This means that 17-year-olds would no longer be automatically be tried as adults or placed with adults in the criminal justice system. But prosecutors would still have discretion to charge them as adults based on the offense.

The state Attorney General has recommendations for changes to bills on expunging criminal records. The bills are up for debate in the state Legislature.

At a Tuesday hearing in front of a House Judicial committee, Nessel said she is, overall, in support of expanding the state’s laws to set aside some crimes on a person’s criminal record.

But she had ideas that she said could improve the bills. One area of concern was a bill to automatically remove certain crimes from a person’s record after 10 years.

Michigan man, Angelo Binno, filed a lawsuit against the Law School Admission Council. That’s because the council would not give him a waiver for the analytical reasoning portion of the exam.

He said it wasn’t fair for visually impaired people because the most common way to solve the problems was to draw diagrams and pictures.

You shouldn’t have to choose between paying for your medication or your mortgage. That’s the message of some Democrats in the state House. They’ve introduced a plan they’re calling HOPE – or Health Over Profits for Everyone.

Some House Democrats have introduced bills aimed at making medical care more affordable.

After a combative budget cycle, state lawmakers want to find common ground on policy issues.

Governor Gretchen Whitmer would like to get leaders in the state Legislature back to the table to come up with a new spending bill. One that uses the almost one billion dollars that Whitmer line-item vetoed in the budget.

But GOP lawmakers say the budget is done and it’s time to focus on policy issues.             

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