File your taxes and donate your organs?

ORGAN DONORS: April 15 won’t just be a tax deadline if proposed legislation passes. Michigan tax filers may soon be asked to check a box on whether they would like to donate their organs. If approved, it would be a first for Michigan and a first for the U.S. The need for organ donors is great. We talk to the Gift of Life of Michigan and the National Kidney Foundation of Michigan. By Sophia Brandt. FOR NEWS AND HEALTH PAGES OF ALL POINTS.

With the addition of three new all-terrain wheelchairs, the total in Michigan state parks will be 14.

More all-terrain wheelchairs added to state parks

ACCESSIBILITY: More all-terrain wheelchairs will be added to state parks, making the outdoors more accessible to people with disabilities. Parks in Emmet, Berrien and Crawford counties will feature the wheelchairs this summer. That brings the total to 14. Holland, Grand Haven and Ludington already have them. We talk to a Department of Natural Resources official, three nonprofits including one in Coopersville and the Friends of Island Lake in Brighton. By Sophia Brandt. FOR ST. IGNACE, HARBOR SPRINGS, CHEBOYGAN, CRAWFORD COUNTY AVALANCHE, HOLLAND, LUDINGTON, GRAND RAPIDS, WKTV AND ALL POINTS

Sheriffs plan training on how to stop excessive force

OFFICER TRAINING: Sheriff deputies around the state will be offered training in how to intervene to stop excessive force by another officer. It’s especially important when a more experienced officer or superior is letting emotions dictate decisions or otherwise making a bad choice that could harm a person under arrest. The training is by the International Association of Chiefs of Police. We talk to the deputy director of the Michigan Sheriffs’ Association and the Alpena County sheriff. By Sophia Brandt. FOR ALPENA and ALL POINTS.

Travelers face higher costs, from gas to park passes

TRAVEL COSTS: The cost of gas, food and even recreational park passes are on the rise. Travel experts say look for deals and think off-season to keep from paying more for your recreational time. Businesses are getting creative. One Ludington B&B owner even offered a knitting retreat to draw more visitors. We talk to a Pure Michigan official and the Ludington business owner. By Sophia Brandt. FOR LUDINGTON, HOLLAND, GRAND RAPIDS BUSINESS and ALL POINTS.

Schools replace old-fashioned drinking fountains 

WATER FOUNTAINS: Legislation awaiting a Senate vote would require schools and child care centers to install filtered water fill-up stations and regularly test drinking water for lead, which can cause developmental and intellectual impairments. We hear from the Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy and XXX. Sponsors include legislators from Metro Detroit, Six Lakes, Monroe, Hudsonville and Bay City. By Sophia Brandt. FOR DETROIT, GREENVILLE, ADRIAN, MONROE, BLISSFIELD, HOLLAND, PLANET DETROIT, LAKE COUNTY, BIG RAPIDS, MIDLAND AND ALL POINTS.

Mason Public School Committee introduces student perception survey 

To opt-in or to opt-out? That is the question Mason Public Schools Policy and Community Committee asked at the March 16 meeting. The committee spent a portion of its meeting discussing the upcoming student perception survey. The student perception survey collects information regarding students’ engagement, belonging and social/emotional learning in Mason schools.

Rep. Dale Zorn of Onsted.

Help for military kids proposed under ‘Purple Star’ program

PURPLE STAR SCHOOLS: A lawmaker from Onsted wants Michigan to establish a Purple Stars program in schools to address the special needs of children of members and veterans of the military. Services include help with varying state-to-state education requirements and the pressures of frequent moves Some other states have done so already. By Sophia Brandt. FOR BLISSFIELD, ADRIAN, MONROE, CRAWFORD COUNTY AND ALL POINTS.

Highway reconstruction tries to repair historic mistakes

HIGHWAYS: Downtown Detroit’s I-375 Reconnecting Communities project highlights the question of how to reunite parts of Michigan communities where major highway projects destroyed urban, generally minority, neighborhoods. That project, the first in Michigan, is already on the planning board, but there’s interest in a similar project with I-475 in Flint. By Sophia Brandt. FOR PLANET DETROIT, DETROIT AND ALL POINTS.