Feb. 15, 2002 CNS Budget

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Messages to the Editors

NATIONAL GUARD: Our group interview with the Michigan National Guard’s commanding officer, Maj. Gen. E. Gordon Stump, produced at least two exclusive tidbits: Northern Michigan may get the unmanned Predator spy planes now so prominently used by the CIA in Afghanistan, and the state guard may not be released from its airport duties as scheduled April 1. Look for Chris Yagelo’s main story on those points, along with a sidebar on the Predator’s features and problems. Your correspondents have been doing so many stories you requested on other topics that additional pieces out of the Guard interview will mostly move on next week’s file. Stay tuned for them because several will be highly localized to your communities.

REGULARS: Your regular stories–in addition to the Predator pieces–cover a wide spread of subjects you requested, including hikes in health insurance costs, cuts in the Single Business Tax, recalling local officeholders, and changing school starting hours.

IN-DEPTHERS: This file features the first of three sets of in-depth news features you’ll get this semester. Among topics of the seven stories are U.P. unemployment, East Lansing river pollution, pop machines in schools, adult education, migrant education, Medicaid changes, and inner-city teachers. .

Articles for week of Friday, February 15, 2002

  • PREDATOR — The Michigan National Guard may use the unmanned Predator spy planes for training and patrol purposes in northern Michigan. By Chris Yagelo. FOR PETOSKEY, U.P., GRAYLING & ALL POINTS.

  • PREDATORSIDEBAR — The Predator spy craft that may be based in northern Michigan has some startling capabilities, but critics question whether it’s worth the cost and bother. By Chris Yagelo. FOR PETOSKEY, U.P., GRAYLING & ALL POINTS.

  • INSURANCERAISES — Big jumps in health-care insurance costs are making some small-business owners queasy. By Allison Miriani. FOR HOLLAND & ALL POINTS.

  • HEALTHCARECOSTS — Gov. Engler’s proposed new MIFamily Medicaid plan may cover more people, but critics worry that others will get reduced services to pay for the changes. By Tracey Glazener. FOR GRAND RAPIDS, LANSING, U.P. & ALL POINTS.

  • MANUFACTURERSSBT — Northern Michigan manufacturers are being reassured that the next scheduled cut in the Single Business Tax will go through, state budget crunch or not. By Elizabeth Daneff. FOR TRAVERSE CITY, LEELANAU, PETOSKEY, CADILLAC.

  • RECALLLAW — A House committee is debating whether state law should be changed to require groups seeking recalls of local officials to first prove the truth of accusations against the officeholders. By Audrey Barney. FOR GREENVILLE.

  • SCHOOLSTARTINGTIMES — Studies show that students may do better in classes if later school starting times give them extra sleep, but some school districts aren’t convinced the tradeoffs are worth it. By Catherine Byrne. FOR HILLSDALE, C&G, & ALL POINTS.


  • NONPOINTPOLLUTION — Officials and residents are concerned that big increases in E. Coli levels in the Red Cedar River could jeopardize economic developments for Williamston’s Whitewater Rapids project. By Catherine Byrne. FOR EAST LANSING.

  • POPHEALTH — Public health officials are appalled at students’ increased consumption of soft drinks, but some school officials say the revenue they get from pop machines is too big to give up. By Allison Miriani. FOR ROMEO, LAPEER, LANSING & ALL POINTS.

  • BACK2SCHOOLS — Many Michigan adults are learning that going back to college classrooms to pick up new skills is paying off. By Audrey Barney. FOR MONROE & ALL POINTS.

  • MIGRANTED — Southwest Michigan schools are trying new ways to offer migrant children some education programs they can use summers. By Elizabeth Daneff. FOR STURGIS, THREE RIVERS, SOUTH BEND, MICHIGAN CITIZEN.

  • MIFAMILY — Gov. Engler’s new MIFamily plan to expand Medicaid services to more families may put too big a financial strain on the whole system, some advocacy organizations worry. By Tracey Glazener. FOR LUDINGTON, LANSING & ALL POINTS.

  • TEACHAMERICA — A program to inject more teachers into urban school districts with many at-risk pupils is drawing praise. Some educators and legislators are concerned, though, that the extra instructors would only be available for two-year terms. By Maureen O’Hara. FOR MICHIGAN CITIZEN & ALL POINTS.

  • UNEMPLOYMENTRISE — U.P. businesses didn’t feel the recession quite as soon as some others areas, but the problems are sinking in now, merchants and officials report. By Chris Yagelo. FOR U.P.

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