ELFD looking for more firefighters after receiving grant

After receiving a grant from the Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency, or FEMA, for $462,500, the East Lansing Fire Department is looking to hire more people. The grant goes to staffing three more people over three year span. During the school year, ELFD serves almost 95,000 people. “20 years ago, we were doing about 2,200 runs per year. Now we’re close to 6,000 runs per year,” Captain Leo Allaire of the fire department said.

Local tourists spots voice concerns over Pure Michigan cut

Governor Gretchen Whitmer cut the proposed $37.5 million budget from the 2020 state budget. The Michigan Economic Development Corporation, MEDC, tells Focal Point News, “Governor Whitmer and the MEDC remain committed to the Pure Michigan Campaign and the positive impact it has had on the tourism industry in Michigan.” They continued to say the cut is a “recognition that the Legislature cannot continue to pass record-high budgets for Pure Michigan while funding for other economic development initiatives is cut to record lows.” Greg Taucher, an advertising professor at Michigan State, said you can’t just turn off the lights on Pure Michigan. “I think that if Michigan killed their tourism campaign, they’d be in a deficit position,” he said.

Anti-abortion flags placed on campus

Protect Life at Michigan State University, an anti-abortion student organization group, organized the event on October 8th called “Cemetery of the Innocence.” The group placed 927 red flags on the corner of Farm and North Shaw Lanes to bring attention to lives lost to abortion. Flags placed near Farm Lane. “Our goal is to raise awareness,” Christen Pollo said. “Help people figure out what they believe about the issue.”

East Lansing makes top ten for increased rent

Residential real estate platform, Zumper, released the top college towns with the fast growing rent. Two Michigan cities placed in the top ten. In the survey of nearly 50 college towns across the United States, East Lansing came in at number seven with a 14.3% increase from the previous. The research found, from 2018 to 2019, rent for a one bedroom increased $100. With new developments like The Hub on Campus and Landmark, competition is increasing, but so are prices.

The deception of the title ‘no-kill’ state

Michigan has gained the title of being a ‘no-kill’ state, meaning at least 90% of animals in shelters have gone home. “They either get returned to their owners, strays and returned to their owners, or transferred to another organization or adopted out,” Julia Willson, CEO and President of the Capital Area Humane Society, said. Willson said the CAHS takes in about 4,500 animals a year and several hundred a month get adopted. MSU senior Shannon Campeau rescued her dog, Beatrice, previously named Ada, from Georgia. “She actually was surrendered from a family which means they gave her up,” she said.

MSU gets new water treatment facility, water tower

The water at Michigan State has high iron levels, often changing the color and giving it a strong iron taste. A student sent a picture to IPF with concerns about the drinking water. To fix that, Infrastructure Planning and Facilities is constructing a new water filtration plant and water storage tower. Located on the corner of Green Way and Recycling Drive by the Surplus Store, the 160-foot tall water tower will be used to store water treated at the plant before being distributed through the 75 miles of pipes throughout campus. “The whole objective was the improve the water quality that’s being delivered to the people on campus,” project manager Bob Nestle of IPF said.

Esports gain popularity in high schools

Electronic sports, or esports, is on the rise in the country. With the rise in popularity, many school districts have added esports to their list of school sponsored sports. Okemos High School doesn’t offer esports as a sponsored sport, but Brian Fuller, the athletic director, see’s the potential. “Anything that can potentially add to the educational value of the students, I think the district has an obligation to at least investigate,” he said. According to their website, they currently offer 31 sponsored sports from wrestling to golf to football.

Spartan Marching Band searching for new members

While the athletes are iconic to the MSU sports world, there’s another group fans root for at every game and they’re looking for more to join. The Spartan Marching Band and Spartan Brass are searching for their next members. The marching band plays at the football games while brass plays at the other sporting events. There are between 70 and 80 spots available with the marching band this coming year from drum line to color guard to flag core. “Even if you’re on campus as a junior or senior, I would encourage you to come out and audition,” David Thornton, marching band director, said.

MSU seniors get ready to graduate

After years of classes, long hours at the library and cramming for exams, it’s finally arrived… graduation. This week marks the end of the spring semester which means graduation is right around the corner. Students are preparing for the big day by buying their cap and gown as well as the colored tassel to match their college. They can also be spotted throughout the campus taking pictures in their ceremony outfit at the historic locations that Michigan State is known for.

Arbor Day grows on campus

Michigan State’s campus is known for its trees… over 25,000 of them. A red autumn maple tree was planted this afternoon in the Brody neighborhood to celebrate the 147th Arbor Day. MSU is recognized for the second consecutive year by the Arbor Day Foundation as a Tree Campus USA Institution. Spectators received a free tree to plant themselves and to motivate them to learn about Arbor Day.