Absolute Michigan's Michigan Blog
Friday, February 25, 2005

Five Things You Need to Know for Friday, February 25, 2005

March Madness! Michigan High School tournament schedules for basketball, volleyball, skiing and a host of other sports are posted by the MHSAA.

House Speaker Criticizes Merit Award Elimination
The Associated Press reports that State House Speaker Craig DeRoche criticized Gov. Jennifer Granholm's proposal to eliminate $500 scholarships for high school students who scored well on the state's MEAP tests while in middle school. The Governor proposed saving $9 million by not giving the Michigan Merit Award scholarships to almost 50,000 graduating seniors.

Water Laws Draw Fire
The Michigan Land Use Institute has a pair of in-depth reports looking at the partisan conflict over Great Lakes water protection. The Water Legacy Act introduced last March by Gov. Granholm to safeguard water resources has stalled in the Legislature but the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality is reviewing the state Inland Lakes and Streams Act to see if it can be used for the same purpose. Michigan Republicans are attacking these measures as harmful to business growth & job creation.
Also read Granholm Administration Eyes New Strategy to Move Water Legacy Act from MLUI

Ford Will Not Sponsor Jazz Festival
The Detroit Free Press reports that the Ford Motor Co. will not renew its $250,000 title sponsorship of the Detroit International Jazz Festival. As Ford's contribution is 20% of the annual Labor Day weekend event's budget, organizers are facing a serious challenge that could result in the end of a 25 year tradition.

Sour News for Michigan Sugar Beet Growers
The Lansing State Journal reports that the Michigan Sugar Co. announced that it is eliminating its final three installment payments to its 1,250 beet producers in 21 Michigan counties (and in Ohio and Ontario). The cooperative stands to lose $33 million because more than 200,000 tons of beets spoiled due to dramtic temperature swings last fall & this winter.

Rise in Lakes Good News for Some, Otherwise for Others
The Detroit News reports that snow & rain in southeast Michigan have raised the Lakes Erie, Ontario and St. Clair 18 inches above last winter's levels (and could have the same effect on the other Great Lakes by summer). Good news for shippers (who can carry more cargo), boat owners and potentially boat sellers. The downside of course is many who have had flooding problems.

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# posted by farlane @ 9:13 AM
A little story: Way back in 2000, a former co-worker of mine who was struggling to make ends meet told me with beaming pride about how her daughter Ashley (then a middle schooler) had worked very hard preparing and had done so well on her MEAP test that she'd be getting a $500 scholarship. As happy as I felt for Ashley then ... well ... that's about how upset I am today.
# posted by Blogger farlane : 9:18 AM  
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