October 24, 2014 Budget

Oct. 24, 2014 – Week 7
To: CNS Editors
From: Eric Freedman & Sheila Schimpf
http://news.jrn.msu.edu/capitalnewsservice/. For technical problems, contact CNS tech manager Tanya Voloshina (248-943-8979) voloshin@msu.edu.

You can email us at cnsmsu@gmail.com.

All articles ©2014, Capital News Service, Michigan State University School of Journalism. Nonmembers cannot reproduce CNS articles without written permission.
COMMUNITY COLLEGES AHEAD: We will interview Michael Hansen, president of the Michigan Community College Association, next Monday, Oct. 27. Potential topics include tuition trends, preparing students for “green economy” jobs, student debt patterns, legislative priorities and international student enrollment trends.
HERE’S YOUR FILE:

COMMISSION: Two legislators from Canton and Muskegon want the state to set up a commission that would focus on equal pay. The bill has been stalled in committee for months but it has the support of the Michigan AFL-CIO. We talk to the AFL-CIO’s Karla Swift and the Department of Civil Rights. By Jordan Bradley. FOR GRAND RAPIDS BUSINESS JOURNAL & ALL POINTS.

WOLVESMICHIGANCANADA: Hunting isn’t the only issue in the debate about wolves in Michigan. Other factors include population size, public attitudes toward the animal and management of wolves on both sides of the international border. By Anthony Cepak. FOR MARQUETTE, BAY MILLS, SAULT STE. MARIE, CHEBOYGAN, ST. IGNACE & ALL POINTS.
w/WOLVESMICHIGANCANADAGRAPHIC: Michigan’s wolf population, 1998-2013. Source: U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.
w/WOLVESMICHIGANCANADAPHOTO: Credit: U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.

NATIONALGUARDWIND: The National Guard is spending $1.5 million on two new machines to generate electricity from wind at Camp Grayling and the Fort Custer Training Center. Unlike traditional windmills, the system captures wind from all directions and will be built by a Roscommon County company. We hear from the manufacturer, the National Guard and a wind funnel skeptic. By Qing Zhang. FOR CRAWFORD COUNTY, STURGIS, THREE RIVERS, GRAND RAPIDS BUSINESS & ALL POINTS.
w/NATIONALGUARDWINDGRAPHIC: Design of the wind funnels to be installed at Camp Grayling and Fort Custer. Credit: Sheerwind Co.

FALLCOLORS: Fall colors are slower to peak this year than usual, and last winter’s extreme cold is to blame. About 2 million people traveled in Michigan to see fall colors last year, and fall color tours contributed about $294 million to the economy. Pure Michigan and an MSU horticulturalist explain. By Juliana Moxley. FOR MARQUETTE, SAULT STE. MARIE, CHEBOYGAN, TRAVERSE CITY, HARBOR SPRINGS, ALCONA, ALPENA, CADILLAC, LUDINGTON, GLADWIN, CRAWFORD COUNTY, MANISTEE, LAKE COUNTY, PETOSKEY, HERALD STAR, GRAND RAPIDS BUSINESS & ALL POINTS.
w/FALLCOLORSPHOTO: This tree has turned a brilliant red at a Michigan state park. Credit: Pure Michigan.

CEMETERY: Old cemeteries contain the history, the fashions and the hopes of generations now gone, Thomas Dilley says in his new book, “The Art of Memory: Historic Cemeteries of Grand Rapids, Michigan,” a new book published by Wayne State University Press ($39.99). Dilley is the expert on Grand Rapids cemeteries, leading tour groups, researching markers and linking them to people and national trends. The thing is, Dilley says, almost every old town that once had a flourishing industry also had a cemetery of note, and the stories are there for the taking. We talk about touring cemeteries with Dilley and someone from the Marquette Regional History Center and add Elmwood Cemetery in Detroit for good measure. By Sheila Schimpf. FOR GREENVILLE, GRAND RAPIDS BUSINESS, MARQUETTE, DEADLINE DETROIT, MICHIGAN CITIZEN & ALL POINTS.
w/CEMETERYCOVER: Credit: Wayne State University Press.

VOTERID: Courts in other states are wrestling with challenges to voter ID laws but Michigan’s law remains firmly in place. Supporters argue they prevent fraud, while critics counter they discourage citizen participation. Michigan is more restrictive than many other states on absentee ballots, early voting and vote-by-mail. It’s an issue in the secretary of state contest. We hear from the AFL-CIO president, ACLU and Mecosta and Crawford county clerks. By Eric Freedman: FOR MICHIGAN CITIZEN, BIG RAPIDS, CRAWFORD COUNTY, DEADLINE DETROIT, LANSING CITY PULSE & ALL POINTS.

WILDFIRES: Michigan had an unusually small number of wildfires this year. Credit an unusually large amount of rain. Meanwhile, a small number of counties have developed DNR-approved community wildfire protection plans, including Oceana, Newaygo, Lake, Crawford, Manistee, Baraga, Marquette, Alger and Luce. We talk to the DNR, the Huron-Manistee National Forest and fire chiefs in Alpena and Grand Traverse counties. By Eric Freedman. FOR MANISTEE, ALPENA, LUDINGTON, CRAWFORD COUNTY, ALCONA, MARQUETTE, SAULT STE. MARIE, CHEBOYGAN, PETOSKEY, GLADWIN, TRAVERSE CITY, LAKE COUNTY, CADILLAC & ALL POINTS.
w/WILDFIREPHOTO: Credit: Department of Natural Resources.
CNS

Pay equity commission stuck in committee

By JORDAN BRADLEY
Capital News Service

LANSING – A bill to create a commission on pay equity is stalled in the House Government Operations Committee, but it might get a chance in December.

The Commission on Pay Equity, as it would be known, would “develop definitions of comparable wages, using the criteria of composite skills, responsibility, effort, education or training, and working conditions,” according to the bill.

Karla Swift, president of the Michigan AFL-CIO, said she would like to see the bill passed in the lame-duck session in December.
Continue reading

For an uplifting walk in a park, find a cemetery

By SHEILA SCHIMPF

Capital News Service

LANSING – The idea of graveyard as park, with landscaping designed to aid contemplation and to encourage the illusion that the visitor had left the regular world behind, is a surprisingly modern one.

In fact, in this country it goes back only to the 1830s, says Thomas Dilley, author of “The Art of Memory: Historic Cemeteries of Grand Rapids, Michigan,” a new book published by Wayne State University Press ($39.99).

spawningreef

The Art of Memory: Historic Cemeteries of Grand Rapids, Michigan by Thomas Dilley


Before the 1830s, graves were in or near churches, clustered in tight places. But then, as churches ran out of room, cities dedicated large empty tracts, either within the city or just outside, as burial places. The vacant space had to be structured for the dead and the living who came to bury and visit them.
Continue reading

Michigan National Guard tests novel wind funnels

By QING ZHANG

Capital News Service

LANSING –The Michigan National Guard is spending $1.5 million on two new machines to generate electricity from wind at Camp Grayling near Grayling and the Fort Custer Training Center near Battle Creek.

Unlike traditional windmills, the system captures wind from all directions, concentrating and accelerating it before sending it through a turbine on the ground, according to its designer, Sheerwind Co.

spawningreef

Design of the wind funnels to be installed at Camp Grayling and Fort Custer. Credit: Sheerwind Co.

The Minnesota-based company calls the design INVELOX, which stands for INcreased VELocity. Sheerwind says the system generates six times more electrical energy than conventional wind turbines and can work at wind speeds as low as 2 mph. And it’s cheaper to build and operate. Continue reading

Take ID to polls but ID photo optional

By ERIC FREEDMAN

Capital News Service

LANSING – While courts in other states wrestle with challenges to their voter photo ID laws in the run-up to the November elections, Michigan’s law is firmly in place.

Supporters of photo ID requirements argue that they prevent fraud at the polls, while critics counter that they discourage Election Day participation, especially among minority voters who may not have one of the mandatory forms of identification.

Michigan is one of 33 states where voters must show proof of identity, according to Harvard University’s Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy.
Continue reading

Rainy weather left behind fewer forest fires

By ERIC FREEDMAN

Capital News Service

LANSING – Michigan has had an unusually small number of wildfires this year. Credit an unusually large amount of rain.

The largest one that the Department of Natural Resources responded to was about 150 acres near the Indiana border.
Scott Heather, the assistant chief of DNR’s Forest Resources Division, said the past season “with all the rain” resulted in the fewest wildfires he’d seen in his 37-year career.

“Typically in a more normal fire season, our agency will suppress at least one that’s 1,000 acres or more,” Heather said.

spawningreef

Credit: Department of Natural Resources

That experience contrasts dramatically with the state’s largest fire in recent years, the 2012 Duck Lake fire in the Upper Peninsula, where, as DNR reported, a “then-small wildfire blew up and began its 11-mile run to Lake Superior.
Continue reading

Last winter’s chilly legacy: fall colors slower to peak

By JULIANA MOXLEY

Capital News Service

LANSING – Fall colors aren’t exploding as uniformly in the Great Lakes region as they have in the past.
Experts say that’s because of last winter’s extreme cold.

NASA satellite images show fall colors beginning to appear in the Upper Peninsula in late September.

spawningreef

This tree has turned a brilliant red at a Michigan state park. Credit: Pure Michigan

Fall color tours are a tourist attraction promoted by the state’s Pure Michigan advertising campaign. About 2 million people traveled throughout the state for fall color tours last year, according to Michelle Grinnell, the travel public relations manager for Pure Michigan.
Continue reading

Hunting not only issue in wolf debate

By ANTHONY CEPAK

Capital News Service

 

LANSING — When voters head to the polls on Nov. 4, they’ll find two ballot proposals concerning wolf hunting in the Upper Peninsula.

However, hunting is only one part of an effort to manage the state’s wolf population, and only one part of the larger issue, according to researchers at Michigan State and Michigan Technological universities.

spawningreef

Credit: U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service

Michigan removed wolves from its protected species list in 2011, and debate began in 2012 over whether to designate it as a game species, allowing establishment of a hunting season.
Continue reading

Oct. 17, 2014 Budget

Oct. 17, 2014 – Week 6

To: CNS Editors

From: Eric Freedman & Sheila Schimpf

http://news.jrn.msu.edu/capitalnewsservice/. For technical problems, contact CNS tech manager Tanya Voloshina (248-943-8979) voloshin@msu.edu.

You can email us at cnsmsu@gmail.com.

All articles ©2014, Capital News Service, Michigan State University School of Journalism. Nonmembers cannot reproduce CNS articles without written permission.

HERE’S YOUR FILE:

HARBORS: New federal grants will help coastal communities in Michigan take advantage of their harbors to increase boating tourists. Four communities in Michigan, including at least one on Lake St. Clair, will take part in a study. We hear from a Sea Grant expert for the Northwest Lower Peninsula and the Alpena city manager. By Ian K. Kullgren. FOR ALPENA, ALCONA, CHEBOYGAN, HARBOR SPRINGS, PETOSKEY, MARQUETTE, HOLLAND, LUDINGTON, MANISTEE, ST. IGNACE, TRAVERSE CITY & ALL POINTS.

TEACHERSHORTAGES: The Education Department is searching for solutions to Michigan’s shortage of teachers to fill vacancies in math, science, technology, world languages and special education. Detroit and rural areas are hardest hit. Problems include the fact that Michigan’s 38 college and university education programs pump out too many students who want to teach elementary school or in already-full subjects, the superintendent of public instruction says. We hear from an Ottawa Area Intermediate School District expert. Senators from Hillsdale, Battle Creek and Grand Ledge want to make it easier for retiring teachers to return to the classroom. By Jordan Bradley. FOR BLISSFIELD, STURGIS, THREE RIVERS, HOLLAND, MICHIGAN CITIZEN, DEADLINE DETROIT & ALL POINTS.

SPAWNINGREEFS: A new 4-acre spawning habitat for whitefish, lake sturgeon and walleye is under construction at Harts Light in the St. Clair River, three times larger than one recently finished near Algonac. It’s part of a series of Sea Grant spawning habitat restoration projects in the Detroit and St. Clair rivers system. We hear from Michigan Sea Grant, U.S. Geological Survey and Ontario experts. By Katie Amann. FOR MICHIGAN CITIZEN, DEADLINE DETROIT, ALPENA, LUDINGTON, MANISTEE, TRAVERSE CITY, PETOSKEY, HOLLAND, CHEBOYGAN, ALCONA & ALL POINTS.
w/SPAWNINGREEFSGRAPHIC: Diagram of spawning reefs in the Detroit and St. Clair rivers. Credit: Michigan Sea Grant.

TURKEY: Turkey’s new strategy for winning long-anticipated membership in the European Union is unlikely to succeed, according to Turks in Michigan. We talk to Turkish citizens in Southwest Michigan and experts at MSU. By Duygu Kanver. FOR STURGIS, THREE RIVERS, GRAND RAPIDS BUSINESS & ALL POINTS.

SPINYWATERFLEA: The self-sustaining populations of the invasive spiny water flea, a crustacean, suggest a great problem in the Great Lakes region, according to researchers. It’s now in all five Great Lakes and many inland waters, including the U.P.’s Lake Gogebic, which is known for its yellow perch and walleye, as a Muskegon-based fisheries biologist explains. By Amanda Proscia. FOR LUDINGTON, TRAVERSE CITY, PETOSKEY, HARBOR SPRINGS, CHEBOYGAN, HOLLAND, MANISTEE, ALCONA, ALPENA, SAULT STE. MARIE, BAY MILLS, MARQUETTE, ST. IGNACE & ALL POINTS.
SPINYWATERFLEAGRAPHIC: Department of Natural Resources advice to prevent the spread of the spiny water flea and other invasive aquatic species.
SPINYWATERFLEAPHOTO: Credit: University of Wisconsin-Madison.

NURSETRAINING: While the Ebola crisis is focusing attention on the ability of the U.S. health care system to respond, nursing programs in Michigan see an opportunity to enrich the education of their students. Meanwhile, the state’s largest nurses union criticizes the readiness of hospitals and the Snyder administration to protect staff and patients in such crises. We hear from experts at Calvin College, Andrews University, Northern Michigan University, the Michigan Hospital Association, Michigan Nurses Association and Michigan Center for Nursing. By Eric Freedman. FOR MICHIGAN CITIZEN, GREENVILLE, STURGIS, THREE RIVERS, MARQUETTE, SAULT STE. MARIE, BAY MILLS, ST. IGNACE, LANSING CITY PULSE, DEADLINE DETROIT, GRAND RAPIDS BUSINESS, HOLLAND & ALL POINTS.

MINORITYENROLLMENT: Two universities in the state – U of M and MSU –are among the top 100 nationally in the number of bachelor’s degrees awarded to minority students, a new study finds. But when the numbers are broken down, Central Michigan, Cooley Law School, Oakland University and University of Detroit Mercy appear among the top 100 in some categories. We also hear from the Presidents Council, State Universities of Michigan. By Eric Freedman. FOR MICHIGAN CITIZEN, LANSING CITY PULSE, DEADLINE DETROIT, GRAND RAPIDS BUSINESS & ALL POINTS.

CNS

Too many teachers? Not enough? Both

By JORDAN BRADLEY

Capital News Service

LANSING – The Department of Education is working on solutions to Michigan’s teacher shortage.

A number of factors led to the K-12 education system shortage, the state superintendent of public instruction, Michael Flanagan said.

These include the poor economy and recent graduates leaving to teach out of state, but what some people may not consider is that college students are learning to teach in subjects that don’t need more teachers.
Continue reading