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
 

Governor Gretchen Whitmer wants Republican leaders to come to the bargaining table.

Earlier this week, Whitmer announced more than 100 line item vetoes that she made in the state budgets, and she moved money around within departments (that’s something she can do without the approval of the Legislature).

During a press conference on Wednesday, Whitmer announced that she wants to take a lot of the money that won’t be spent on the items she vetoed, and put those toward a new supplemental budget.

Starting Wednesday, Michigan vape shops will have to stop selling flavored nicotine products.

The final rules of the ban were announced two weeks ago. They were put in place by Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s administration. The state says that young people vaping has become a public health crisis.

Governor Gretchen Whitmer has vetoed $375 million in one-time road funding. The governor finished signing all 16 state budgets hours before the October 1st deadline.

Whitmer says she had to make the 147 line-item vetoes to protect Michigan residents. In a recorded statement on Instagram, Whitmer said the budgets sent to her by the Republican-controlled Legislature were “built on phony numbers, using funds in the wrong way, usurping executive power. These are important things that I had to eliminate from these budgets.”

The state cannot restrict the number of signatures a ballot initiative can get from a single Congressional district.

That is part of the ruling out of the Court of Claims Friday. Several groups – including the League of Women Voters and the Republican-led state House and Senate – sued the Secretary of State, though hoping for different outcomes. This is over a law signed last year that adds restrictions to how people can get signatures for ballot initiatives.

Jennifer Weingart / WVPE Public Radio

The October First deadline to pass a state budget and avoid a partial government shutdown is fast approaching in Michigan.

As part of the weekly series MichMash, Jake Neher and Cheyna Roth talk about Republican attempts to scale back funding for Michigan’s new redistricting commission.

Governor Gretchen Whitmer says the budgets on their way to her desk are “a mess.”

The Legislature voted out the rest of the state budgets Tuesday, including the education and transportation budgets.

Lawmakers at the state Capitol will start looking at bills to take certain crimes off people’s criminal records. A committee hearing on a package of bills is scheduled for Tuesday.

The goal is to expand the state’s expungement laws. That way more people could set aside criminal convictions for low level crimes or those that happened long ago.

Jennifer Weingart / WVPE Public Radio

 

Michigan lawmakers have struck a deal to fund K-12 schools when the new fiscal year starts in October. House Democrats negotiated the deal with the Republican majority… without Governor Gretchen Whitmer at the table.

 

As part of the weekly series MichMash, Cheyna Roth and Jake Neher talk about how that might affect the governor’s ability to get things done going forward.

Republicans and Democrats in the state House have come to an agreement on the state’s K-12 education budget.

The details won’t be released until tomorrow when a committee will vote on the plan.

Plans to make Michigan a sports betting state are moving through the state Legislature. A package of bills is scheduled to be voted out of a House committee Tuesday.

The bills would create a Division of Sports Betting in the state’s Gaming Control Board. If passed, the division would create rules, license sports betting establishments and oversee organizations with sports betting licenses.

Opponents of expanding gambling in the state say it could negatively impact the state lottery, which puts money toward the state’s schools.

A state lawmaker wants to close a loophole in Michigan’s marital rape law. A person currently cannot be convicted of rape solely because they had sexual intercourse with their spouse, while the spouse was mentally incapacitated.

It’s an exception in the state’s marital rape laws. And Representative Laurie Pohutsky (D-Livonia) has introduced a bill to get rid of the exception.

Jennifer Weingart / WVPE Public Radio

There are many ways interest groups try to get lawmakers to pay attention to their pet issues. Some hold rallies on the state Capitol lawn. Others choose to operate behind-the-scenes.

As part of the weekly series MichMash, Jake Neher and Cheyna Roth talk about the record amount of money lobbyists are spending at restaurants in 2019 to influence state policy.

A democratic state lawmaker wants the state Capitol to reverse its ban on signs.

The Capitol currently prohibits protestors and other people from bringing signs into the building.

Jennifer Weingart / WVPE Public Radio

Supporters of the vaping industry in Michigan are threatening legal action over a plan to ban flavored vaping products.

As part of the weekly series MichMash, Cheyna Roth and Jake Neher talk about what authority the governor has to ban an entire product in the name of public health.

Jennifer Weingart / WVPE Public Radio

Supporters of the vaping industry in Michigan are threatening legal action over a plan to ban flavored vaping products.

As part of the weekly series MichMash, Cheyna Roth and Jake Neher talk about what authority the governor has to ban an entire product in the name of public health.

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