Michigan News

(AP PHOTO/PAUL SANCYA, FILE)

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson’s mass mailing of unsolicited absentee ballot applications to millions of 2020 voters was deemed legal by Michigan’s appeals court. Judges ruled 2-1 Wedneday that she has “inherent” authority to act under a 2018 constitutional amendment expanding voting rights. The court upheld a lower judge’s decision.

Oops: VP Mike Pence Missing From Some Michigan Ballots

Sep 16, 2020
Lauren Chapman/IPB News

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Local election clerks in Michigan downloading absentee ballots for residents overseas were given ballots that listed President Donald Trump’s Republican running mate as Jeremy Cohen, not Mike Pence. Cohen, known as “Spike,” is the Libertarian Party candidate for vice president. The Michigan secretary of state's office says it fixed the “temporary error” within 90 minutes Tuesday. About 400 ballots were printed, but it's unknown how many were sent. Clerks were told to issue correct ballots and tell voters who receive the erroneous one to ignore it.

(AP Photo/Paul Sancya)

ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) — The University of Michigan is suing to stop a strike by graduate-student instructors after they voted to extend their walkout. The lawsuit, filed Monday, seeks an injunction that would stop the strike by the Graduate Employees’ Organization, which represents 2,000 graduate-student instructors and graduate-student assistants. The university said a strike is illegal under the contract. The strike began Sept. 8. Union members said the university isn’t doing enough to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Republican lawmakers and Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer have agreed to a budget framework, saying there will be no cuts to K-12 schools or municipalities despite the coronavirus pandemic’s effect on tax revenues.The deal announced Monday came 17 days before the start of the fiscal year. Few specifics were released, including whether spending will be reduced in some areas. The chairs of legislative budget subcommittee will now take their spending “target” levels and work to iron out bills. Legislators will take final votes next week.

Photo provided by the Michigan DNR

Some Michigan firefighters are in the Western U.S. right now helping battle massive wildfires that have taken over parts of the state. 

Photo provided by the State of Michigan

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, faced with lawsuits challenging her use of emergency powers to fight the coronavirus, could continue to prevail in court. But she may be unable to stop a Republican maneuver that would rescind the 75-year-old law that has enabled her to issue and lift COVID-19 restrictions unilaterally. A ballot drive says it's in the “home stretch” after collecting more than 400,000 signatures in two months. Its goal is 500,000. If at least 340,000 signatures are deemed valid by a state board, the GOP-controlled Legislature would likely repeal the 1945 law.

Mandatory Quarantine Ordered For 23 MSU Greek Houses

Sep 12, 2020
(AP PHOTO/ANNA NICHOLS)

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A county has ordered a two-week quarantine for 23 fraternities and sororities and seven large rental houses near Michigan State University following a coronavirus outbreak that a local health official says is turning into a “crisis.” The quarantine, which is mandatory, means students or others living in the buildings cannot leave except for medical care or necessities that cannot be delivered. Ingham County Heath Officer Linda Vail said Monday that the surge in cases is alarming. Vail acted two days after she urged all MSU students living locally to voluntarily self-quarantine for 14 days.  

RICK BOWMER/AP PHOTO/FILE

NEW: Today both the State of Indiana and Michigan have reported their first human cases of EEE (Eastern Equine Encaphlitis.) The case in Indiana is in LaPorte County. The case in Michigan is in Barry County. 

Trump Comments On Pandemic At Michigan Rally: "We Did It Just The Right Way"

Sep 11, 2020
(AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Reeling from another crisis of his own making, President Donald Trump tried to refocus attention on his Democratic rival at a rally in battleground Michigan Thursday as he pushed to move past revelations that he purposefully played down the danger of the coronavirus last winter. But the virus controversy followed him as he faced new pushback from local officials worried about the growing size of his rallies and his campaign’s repeated flouting of public health guidelines intended to halt the COVID-19 spread. That includes Michigan’s Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, who raised alarms about Thursday’s event. Trump, however, reveled in the crowd of several thousand, packed shoulder-to-shoulder in a cavernous airport hangar, mostly without masks.

Trump Heads To Michigan Amid Woodward Book Fallout

Sep 10, 2020
JOE RAEDLE / GETTY IMAGES

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump was trying to move past revelations that he was determined to play down the threat of the coronavirus as he headed for a rally in battleground Michigan Thursday. But the president was facing renewed pushback from local leaders worried that his rallies are growing in size and flouting public health guidelines intended to halt the spread of the virus. This week, the state of Nevada became the first to scuttle Trump’s plans for rallies initially set for Las Vegas and Reno. Michigan’s Democratic Gov.

(AP PHOTO/PAUL SANCYA, FILE)

According to the Michigan Secretary of State's office, more than 2.1 million Michigan voters had already requested absentee ballots by Tuesday, eight weeks ahead of the November 3 general election.

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has clarified her order requiring masks in organized sports, saying they must be worn in training and competition only when athletes can't consistently keep 6 feet apart. The measure issued Wednesday explicitly mentions football, soccer and volleyball as sports where face coverings are a must due to the coronavirus pandemic. But it also now exempts sports in which athletes can keep distance “except for occasional and fleeting moments” — such as tennis, golf, cross country, baseball and softball.

Photo provided by the State of Michigan

Republicans leaders in the Legislature Wednesday asked the Michigan Supreme Court to rule that Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s has abused her emergency powers to address COVID-19.

(AP Photo/Anna Nichols)

Michigan State University says 124 students reported positive results for the coronavirus last week. Nearly all the students live off campus. They had symptoms and were tested on campus or reported the results from tests performed elsewhere. President Samuel Stanley Jr. said the numbers are “disappointing but not unexpected.” Nonetheless, Stanley says it's a “wake-up call” to the community. Ingham County health officials have limited outdoor gatherings in East Lansing to 25 people. East Lansing also is requiring masks on streets and sidewalks in popular commercial areas near campus. 

(PHOTO BY MICHIGAN NATIONAL GUARD STAFF SGT. TEGAN KUCERA)

The Michigan Department of the Health and Human Services (MDHHS) is offering free COVID-19 testing in Niles starting on Wed., Sept. 9. 

 

MSU Building Named For A KKK Member Will Get New Name

Sep 4, 2020
MICHIGAN STATE UNIVERSITY

EAST LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Michigan State University is moving to change the name of a campus building after learning that it’s named for a man who belonged to the Ku Klux Klan. Stephen Nisbet’s membership card from the 1920s was discovered at a library at Central Michigan University. MSU's human resources building is named for Nisbet, who was a member of the school’s governing board from 1962-70. Nisbet worked in education and private business and was chairman of the 1961 convention that produced Michigan’s constitution. He died in 1986.

RICK BOWMER/AP PHOTO/FILE

The State of Michigan has announced that for the first time in 2020, a person in the state has been diagnosed with West Nile. 

High School Football Is Back On In Michigan

Sep 3, 2020
HTTPS://WWW.MHSAA.COM/

After Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed orders allowing organized sports, the Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA) announced that the fall football season is being reinstated. 

(You can read the MHSAA release below.)  

EAST LANSING, Mich. – Sept. 3 – The Fall 2020 football season has been reinstated today by the Representative Council of the Michigan High School Athletic Association after Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s Executive Order 176 lifted restrictions that previously did not allow the sport to be played.

Photo provided by the State of Michigan

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has signed orders to allow gyms and pools to reopen. Additionally, organized sports may resume with restrictions in place. Whitmer says contact sports are still not recommended.

 

Ex-Michigan Gov. Snyder Is Latest Republican To Back Biden

Sep 3, 2020
COURTESY OF THE SNYDER ADMINISTRATION IN 2017

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Former Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder is backing Joe Biden for president, becoming the latest high-profile Republican to support the Democratic nominee over President Donald Trump. Snyder said Thursday that Biden "is a man of deep faith and commitment to family, decency and integrity." He says Biden can help heal America and put society back on a positive path. The announcement comes in conjunction with the launch of Republicans and Independents for Biden.

Michigan COVID-19 Cases Hit 100,000

Aug 29, 2020
ABIGAIL CENSKY, WKAR

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Michigan has crossed the threshold of 100,000 cases of the coronavirus confirmed since March. The state health department says deaths related to COVID-19 reached 6,446 after six more were recorded Friday. Most people recover from the virus. But for older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause pneumonia and lead to death. Meanwhile, the state Education Department says 86% of public school districts are offering in-person instruction for the new year, even if it’s just two to three days per week.

(AP PHOTO/PAUL SANCYA, FILE)

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A Michigan judge has dismissed a lawsuit challenging the secretary of state’s mailing of absentee ballot applications to millions of voters who did not request one, ruling that Jocelyn Benson had “clear and broad” authority to do so. State Court of Claim Judge Cynthia Stephens’ decision Wednesday had been signaled after she rejected a request for a preliminary injunction in June.

BRIAN SNYDER / REUTERS/LANDOV

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is urging Michigan residents to get the flu vaccine to ease the load on the health system if there is a surge of coronavirus cases during the fall and winter influenza season. She announced Tuesday that the state wants at least 1 million more people vaccinated. Whitmer received a flu shot during a news conference to “show how easy it is.” More than 3.2 million of Michigan’s 10 million residents were vaccinated against the flu last season. The state’s goal is to increase that number by a third, to 4.3 million.

Virus Concerns Delay Students' Return To E. Michigan Dorms

Aug 24, 2020
(AP PHOTO/MIKE HOUSEHOLDER)

YPSILANTI, Mich. (AP) — Eastern Michigan University says students cannot move into dorms on campus for at least three weeks and classes will remain online during that period to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. The school said in a news release Monday that residence halls will remain closed through Sept. 17. Classes are set to begin Aug. 31 but will be online through Sept. 20. Eastern Michigan president James Smith says the health, safety and well-being of the campus community were paramount in the decision to restrict campus activities. Eastern Michigan has about 18,000 students. 

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(AP PHOTO/LYNNE SLADKY)

KALAMAZOO, Mich. (AP) — A federal judge won't block a requirement that Michigan farm workers get tested for the coronavirus, rejecting claims that it violates the rights of Hispanics. The lawsuit was filed on behalf of a handful of workers as well as some fruit producers. But farm worker advocates are in favor of the tests. Compliance starts Monday under an order from the state health department. Federal Judge Paul Maloney says the order is neutral, noting it doesn't mention Hispanics or any other race.

Earthquake Occurs Near Monroe In Corner Of Michigan

Aug 22, 2020
(AP Photo/Richard Vogel, File)

MONROE, Mich. (AP) — Authorities say a magnitude 3.2 earthquake occurred Friday night near Monroe in the southeastern corner of Michigan. The U.S. Geological Survey says the depth was about 5.7 miles. The earthquake was felt in Ohio, which is just minutes from Monroe. It happened around 7 p.m. Earthquakes of that magnitude aren't considered major, although people say they felt it. Vicki LaVelle of Temperance says there was a "loud boom" and her "entire house shook." Earthquakes of 3.2 magnitude aren't considered major. State police had no reports of damage.

 

Court Ruling: Whitmer's Emergency Orders Are Legal

Aug 22, 2020
Photo provided by the State of Michigan

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Michigan's appeals court says Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s emergency declarations and orders to curb the coronavirus clearly fall within the scope of her legal powers. The court on Friday rejected Republican lawmakers' contention that she cannot indefinitely act without their approval. Republicans vowed to appeal the 2-1 ruling to the state Supreme Court. The appeals court denied GOP lawmakers’ contention that a 1945 law only lets a governor indefinitely extend emergencies that are local, not statewide, in nature.

AP PHOTO/CARLOS OSORIO/FILE

 

(AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Michigan has applied for federal funding to provide an additional $300 a week in unemployment benefits. It's less than the $600 boost that expired last month but still more than the maximum $362 weekly payment Michigan dispenses. President Donald Trump this month signed an order extending the added weekly benefit after he and Congress were unable to agree to a broader new coronavirus relief plan. Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer says the program will provide much-needed support but is a short-term “Band-Aid” that falls short of what's needed.

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