CNS budget 9/27/19

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To: CNS Editors

From: David Poulson and Sheila Schimpf

For technical problems, contact CNS technical manager Tony Cepak at (517) 803-6841;

For other matters, contact Dave Poulson at (517) 432-5417 or (517) 899-1640;

Michigan journalists: Don’t miss this Oct. 22 seminar on reporting on water in the Great Lakes state. Co-sponsored by MSU’s Knight Center for Environmental Journalism, M-Live and the Michigan Press Association.

This is the fourth CNS file of the fall semester.

Here is your file:

CYBER GUARD — Cyber security requires constant updates and reviews, experts say — and a group of Michigan volunteers that responds to attacks on government databases just got one of its own. The state’s auditor general recently reported that 35 of the 99 volunteers of the Michigan Cyber Civilian Corps failed to undergo background checks. Two volunteers failed the checks and had their status revoked in April. Coordinators of the network say that improvements have been made in a service needed to keep data secure. We also hear from a Western Michigan University expert. By Evan Jones. FOR CORP!, GRAND RAPIDS BUSINESS AND ALL POINTS.

BALLOON TRACKER — A University of Michigan researcher is tracking balloon litter in the Great Lakes region to spread awareness of how it harms the environment. helps citizen scientists track where popular balloon launches end. It maps where the balloons are found and allows people to submit photos of the debris. Balloon litter is dangerous to wildlife that can get tangled in or eat it. By Tasia Bass  FOR ALL POINTS

BALLOON TRACKER MAP — Balloon debris found in the Great Lakes since June 1, 2019. Credit:

SENIOR DEBT — Michiganders are getting older and they’re likely to owe more money than ever. A federal report says senior debt is on the rise and local officials say that is likely the case in Michigan’s fast aging population. Story focuses on Northwest Michigan. By Evan Jones. FOR TRAVERSE CITY, PETOSKEY, LEELANAU, HARBOR SPRINGS, CHEBOYGAN AND ALL POINTS.

HIGH WATER LEGACY — Storm and wave damage this fall may be more prevalent than ever along the shores of the Great Lakes. That’s the legacy of the summer’s high water levels. Evaporation is a key factor in determining how much havoc they may yet wreak. By Helen Korneffel  FOR MARQUETTE, SAULT STE. MARIE, ST. IGNACE, PETOSKEY, TRAVERSE CITY, CHEBOYGAN, MANISTEE, ALCONA, BAY MILLS, HOLLAND, BENZIE, OCEANA, HARBOR SPRINGS, LUDINGTON AND ALL POINTS

W/HIGH WATER LEGACY PHOTO –Sunset on Lake Huron in Caseville, Michigan. Credit: Helen Korneffel.


MAYORAL ELECTIONS — From Holland to Traverse City, from Three Rivers to Sault Ste. Marie, from Cadillac to Ionia and from St. Ignace to Zeeland, voters across the state will choose mayors on Nov. 5. If past patterns hold — and without presidential, congressional or legislative races on the ballot — only a fraction of the voters in 100 Michigan cities with mayoral elections will participate. That’s despite the fact that “local governments provide many key public services that citizens care deeply about.” We interview the author of a new national study and a Grand Valley State University political scientist. EDITORS: You can localize with inserts about mayoral races in your circulation areas. By Eric Freedman. FOR TRAVERSE CITY, PETOSKEY, THREE RIVERS, IONIA, STURGIS, HOLLAND, SAULT STE. MARIE, GRAND RAPIDS BUSINESS, MARQUETTE, LANSING CITY PULSE, CADILLAC, BIG RAPIDS, ST. IGNACE, LEELANAU AND ALL POINTS.

w/MAYORAL ELECTION LIST – List of Michigan communities with mayoral elections this year. Source: Michigan Secretary of State.

CRAYFISH PERSONALITY — Experiments at the U-M Biological Station in Pellston show how exposure to the popular herbicide atrazine can affect whether crayfish are bold or shy, and thus their ability to protect themselves from predators like large-mouth bass. Atrazine gets in rivers, lakes, groundwater and agricultural run-off. Tested crayfish came from Cheboygan County. By Eric Freedman. FOR MICHIGAN FARM NEWS, CHEBOYGAN, PETOSKEY AND ALL POINTS. 

w/CRAYFISH PERSONALITY PHOTO 1 — Crayfish used in atrazine exposure study. Credit: Alexandra Steele.

w/CRAYFISH PERSONALITY PHOTO 2 – Scientists built this artificial flow-through system at the University of Michigan Biological Station in Pellston to expose crayfish to atrazine. Credit: Alexandra Steele.

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