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Friday, August 26, 2005

Five Things You Need to Know for Friday, August 26, 2005

Please note, the Boblo Boat is once again afloat.

Questions Surround Chemical Dust in Romulus
Toxic chemicals, including lead, arsenic and cadmium, were among 37 potentially hazardous compounds in the fallout from the Aug. 9 chemical plant explosion at EQ Resource Recovery in Romulus.

Solar Powered Buoy Provides Valuable Information
A solar-powered buoy bobbing on the surface of Grand Traverse Bay is providing boaters, forecasters and other interested people with up-to-date information about the Lake Michigan waterway's sometimes volatile weather.

New Bill Favors Families Over Foster Care
State Sen. Irma Clark-Coleman, D-Detroit, and state Rep. Michael Murphy, D-Lansing, have introduced legislation in the Senate and House that would increase payments for relatives raising children to about two-thirds of the rate currently paid to licensed foster homes.

Skills Equals Jobs in Michigan
Gov. Jennifer M. Granholm has a message for Michigan's unemployed: The state has 90,000 employment vacancies. Jobs go wanting in health care and some skilled-trade industries. "In this global economy, you need to have skills to be able to get a job and stay in a job," she said.

Alternative Energy Motor City Style
There are parts of the country that have long embraced the potential of alternative energies, where business leaders are taking huge strides toward ending America's dependence on nonrenewable and increasingly expensive fossil fuels. The Motor City is not one of those places. At least that's what most people might think.

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# posted by William Stevens @ 5:29 PM 0 comments links to this post
Thursday, August 25, 2005

Five Things You Need to Know for Thursday, August 25, 2005

Bad news for ex-Red Wing Darren McCarty and good news for the newest Red Wing Jimmy Howard

Chlorine Spill Kills Fish and Plants
Efforts to spruce up the banks of the Clinton River and make the water friendlier to trout in Auburn Hills suffered a setback when high levels of chlorine were released into the water, killing plants and fish.

Military Brings Jobs to Detroit
A federal commission voted Wednesday to bring 1,100 jobs to a Detroit-area facility that develops Humvees and tanks, combining the Motor City's automotive prowess with the military's development of vehicles.

Housing Prices May Plummet
Michigan's poor economy may soon bring a drop in housing prices, experts say. Michigan's poor economy may soon bring a drop in housing prices, experts say. Although Michigan isn't part of the housing "bubble" that has driven up prices in the past year by 20 percent or more in coastal communities such as San Diego and Fort Lauderdale, Fla., its poor economy is causing the housing market to soften.

The Unfortunate Cost of War
Adrian Butler of Detroit, Eric Burri of Wyoming, and Stephen Frank of Lansing probably never knew each other, but all had something in common. All three Michigan soldiers were killed by roadside bombs while on the front lines of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

High Gas Prices Spur Creative Transportation Modes
Whether this summer’s price spike qualifies as a Fuller-scale emergency - or even a closing door - remains to be seen. But some folks, in Lansing and beyond, see the jump at the pump differently than the moaners at the water cooler. To them, it’s a necessary adjustment, a much-needed kick in the sustainability buttocks, a unique opportunity for innovation and local action - perhaps even a (gulp) g

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# posted by William Stevens @ 4:11 PM 1 comments links to this post
Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Five Things You Need to Know for Wednesday, August 24, 2005

From the Only Peripherally Having to do with Michigan Department, Mainichi Newspapers of Japan reports that it would cost every American man, woman and child $145,000 to pay the tab for the long-term promises the U.S. government has made to creditors, retirees, veterans and the poor. Beyond the recitation of the usual mind-numbing figures (savings have plummeted to just 1.8% in 2004 and nearly to zero in the last few months) are polls reflecting our attitudes about debt and and a look at what the rest of the world is thinking. For example: China's decided last month to uncouple the value of the yuan from the dollar.

Alternative Fuel Legislation Proposed
The AP (via the TC Record Eagle) reports that with gas prices closing in on $3 per gallon, Democrats in the Michigan House unveiled legislation Tuesday that would eventually require all gasoline sold in Michigan to be mixed with fuel made mostly of corn. Democrats say their proposal will benefit Michigan farmers who grow soybeans and corn and also want to require that biodiesel (made from soybeans) make up 5% of diesel fuel beginning Dec. 31, 2006.

Dave Bing Working to Change Detroit
The Detroit Free Press has feature on the efforts of Dave Bing, Piston legend and owner of the Bing Group, to transform Detroit's North End. He has built 40 middle-income, brick homes in the area and has joined the Skillman Foundation and Plymouth-based Thompson Foundation who are seeking to charter 15 high schools for a second school district, New Schools of Detroit. (thought-provoking)
Also see Skillman, Thompson foundations to propose 15 Detroit charter schools in Crain's Detroit
Bing Group web site

Campaign for a Healthier Michigan
WILX TV (Lansing) reports that in announcing the Healthy Businesses campaign, Michigan Surgeon General Dr. Kimberlydawn Wisdom said Michigan's unhealthy lifestyle choices lead to poor quality of life and for businesses it can mean low productivity and higher healthcare costs. Michigan is #1 in heart disease death, #2 in obesity and diabetes, #6 in number of smokers and #1 in prescription drug use.
Michigan Surgeon General web site (has a good beat and you can dance to it)

As Gas Prices Rise, So Does Carpooling
The Detroit Free Press reports that high gas prices appear to have more Detroit-area commuters searching for something they've historically shunned -- car pools. The Southeast Michigan Council of Governments (SEMCOG), an organization that connects metro riders with the private MichiVan pool program says applications are up over 800% from last year. The 2000 U.S. census showed that about 200,000 people in metro Detroit use some form of ride sharing to get to work.

Motion Filed to Reconsider Beach Walking Ruling
The Detroit Free Press reported that the attorney for waterfront landowners Richard & Kathleen Goeckel asked the Michigan Supreme Court to reconsider its ruling that the public has a right to walk along all the state's Great Lakes beaches. The motion contends that the court's decision was based on faulty legal reasoning and allows unconstitutional seizure of private land for public use.

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# posted by farlane @ 9:39 AM 0 comments links to this post
Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Five Things You Need to Know for Tuesday, August 23, 2005

News Bites: Concerned Residents Hold Fact Fair on Sulfide Mining, Pistons Sign Dale Davis, 1200 Northwest Airline jobs eliminated.

Michigan Teachers Link Science to Community
The Great Lakes Radio Consortium has a great 4 1/2 minute feature profiling the efforts of Michigan teachers to make science more interesting to students by looking at environmental issues near their homes in Michigan. Teachers say today's students know very little about where their food comes from or why they should worry about the health of local fish and wildlife. Nice curriculum links!

Wind to Power Ishepming Senior Citizen Apartment Building
The Great Lakes IT Report had a feature today about and agreement between WindStor Power Co. and the Ishpeming Housing Commission of Ishpeming in the Upper Peninsula has agreed to purchase onsite generated electricity from a WindStor wind turbine for a senior citizen apartment building known as Pioneer Bluff.
McKenzie Bay International Ltd. web site

Presque Isle is First Thousand Footer in Marquette since '97
The Mining Journal has a report (with typically nice photo) on the rare appearance of a 1000-foot vessel last weekend. The ore carrier Presque Isle was the first thousand footer to call in Marquette since 1997 and loaded 50,000 tons of iron ore pellets, an amount that would require 825 railroad cars to haul. Mining company Cleveland-Cliffs says both Marquette County mines the they manage are running at full capacity due to a China-led higher demand for steel and iron ore.

Movie Tax Panned by Michigan Theaters
The Lansing State Journal reports that Michigan Moviegoers might have to pay 40-50 cents more per ticket if Gov. Granholm succeeds in persuading the Legislature to impose a new tax on theater owners. The plan would generate about $20 million annually for the state and public schools but theater owners say their business is already in a slump and are fighting the proposal tooth and nail.

DeVos Refutes Job Claims, Touts Business Experience
The Port Huron Times-Herald has a report on the visit to Port Huron by Republican gubinatorial hopeful Dick DeVos. DeVos refuted claims by Gov. Granholm that his company (Alticor, formerly Amway) sent jobs overseas, away from Michigan and said "If there are business issues, perhaps the people of Michigan should hire a businessman".

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# posted by farlane @ 10:25 AM 0 comments links to this post
Monday, August 22, 2005

Five Things You Need to Know for Monday, August 22, 2005

Jerry Green says: Lions' two-QB system is a luxury and risk Good points and an interesting look at Lion QB history. On a different note: Protecting wildlife vs. protecting Escanaba.

Metro Detroit Power Grid Taking Heat
The Detroit News reports that power problems in Metro Detroit are more widespread than recent complaints to state regulators indicate according to business owners and residents frustrated by years of recurrent outages and low voltage. Power issues are blamed for businesses losing customers and perishable products and homeowners having to replace ruined air conditioners and appliances.

Medicaid Cuts Could Be Major Trouble for Michigan
The Detroit News reports that Michigan could lose more than $300 million annually in federal funds for its already endangered Medicaid health care program, potentially forcing the state to turn away tens of thousands of its neediest citizens and consider raising taxes or cutting other vital state services. Medicaid is Michigan's largest budget item, accounting for 23% of spending.

Travel Michigan Ad Money Apparently Well Spent
MITECHNEWS.com reports that Travel Michigan (Michigan's State Tourism Agency) won the Mercury Award for its 2004 radio campaign that ran in Chicago, Indianapolis & Cleveland. According to a study, the campaign attracted nearly one million visitors who spent $163 million statewide, generated an additional $11.5 million in state taxes and funded 3,607 tourism related Michigan jobs.

Michigan Golf Mecca Seeing Minor Gains in 2005
The Traverse City Record-Eagle has a report on the thousands of golfers who travel each summer to the Gaylord area which has two dozen golf courses is marketed as the Midwest's golf mecca . Revenues at many golf courses and businesses are on par with last year (a poor year due to weather) with some modest increases.

Profile: Lansing Beaners Owner Mohamed Shetiah
The Lansing State Journal has a feature on Mohamed Shetiah, a 36-year old East Lansing resident and the owner of five Lansing-area Beaner's Gourmet Coffee shops (including the original Beaner's Gourmet Coffee in East Lansing). Shetiah also has plans to open a 6th in Kalamazoo and operates five Ohio locations.

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# posted by farlane @ 9:01 AM 0 comments links to this post
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