More Than $400 Million in Michigan State Rental Aid Still Available

The federal eviction moratorium is over, but there’s still more than $400 million of rental aid available on the state level.

MI State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA) still has ample COVID Emergency Rental Assistance (CERA) funds available to help renters pay owed rent and assist landlords in recouping costs.

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Detroit Councilman Spivey Arraigned for Bribery

U.S. Magistrate Judge Elizabeth Stafford entered a not-guilty plea for a silent Detroit City Councilman André L. Spivey in U.S. District Court in Detroit Tuesday to accepting over $35,000 in exchange for council votes. 

Spivey was released on a $10,000 unsecured bond. Stafford reportedly agreed to the release under the conditions that Spivey to give up his enhanced driver’s license, his passport and his expired concealed-carry permit.

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Michigan Representatives Ask Justice Department to Explain Why it Dropped Probe into Nursing Home Deaths

Three members of Congress from Michigan are asking the Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Justice to conduct a formal inquiry as to why the department dropped its investigation of nursing home deaths in the state.

The DOJ announced July 22 it would cease an investigation into Michigan nursing home deaths from COVID-19 and whether those deaths were a result of Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s policies. The investigation was begun during the administration of former President Donald Trump.

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Gov. Whitmer Signs Driver’s License Extensions for Michiganders into Law

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed three bills dealing with the consequences of a 15-months backlog at the Secretary of State’s office extending the validation of state driver’s licenses and ID cards.

“The pandemic was tough on all of us, and these bills put Michigan drivers first by giving Michiganders the flexibility they need to renew their drivers license and IDs,” Whitmer said in a statement. “It is crucial that we continue to offer services at our Secretary of State that fit the needs of all residents as we move forward.”

The three bills add 120 days of validity for the documents expired between March 1, 2020, and March 31, 2021.

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Michigan Nonprofit Alleges Gov. Whitmer’s Campaign Has Illegally Exploited Donation-Limit Loophole

A complaint filed by the nonprofit Michigan Freedom Fund (MFF) last week alleges that that state’s governor, Gretchen Whitmer, has taken illegal advantage of a campaign-finance loophole to raise unlawful amounts of cash. 

Individuals may contribute up to $7,150 according to state law, though a 1984 administrative ruling by then Michigan Secretary of State Richard Austin (D) sought to negate that limit for candidates facing recalls. Whitmer has relied on that ruling in surpassing the contribution limit. 

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Michigan’s New Diversity and Inclusion Director Receives $130,800 Salary

Rané Garcia

The Michigan Department of Education (MDE) is paying Rané Garcia $130,801 per year for a new position to lead the agency’s diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) initiative.

MDE reported Garcia’s salary in response to a Freedom of Information Act request by The Center Square.

in her new position, Garcia “will be responsible for developing and supporting internal and external efforts and strategies that foster greater fairness and inclusion in the state’s public schools.”

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Michigan Gov. Whitmer Signs Driver’s License Extensions into Law

People in chairs at the DMV

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed three bills dealing with the consequences of a 15-months backlog at the Secretary of State’s office extending the validation of state driver’s licenses and ID cards.

“The pandemic was tough on all of us, and these bills put Michigan drivers first by giving Michiganders the flexibility they need to renew their drivers license and IDs,” Whitmer said in a statement. “It is crucial that we continue to offer services at our Secretary of State that fit the needs of all residents as we move forward.”

The three bills add 120 days of validity for the documents expired between March 1, 2020, and March 31, 2021.

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Former Michigan Senator Carl Levin Dead at 87

Sen. Carl Levin

Former Michigan Sen. Carl Levin, a Democrat who served 36 years and rose to chair the Senate Armed Services Committee, died Thursday at the age of 87.

The Levin Center at Wayne State University in Detroit announced his death Thursday night, describing him as “a dearly beloved husband, father, grandfather, brother and uncle, and life-long public servant.”

His six Senate terms are the most that any Michigan senator has served.

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Detroit, Michigan Voters to Decide on Left-Wing ‘Proposal P’ on Tuesday

When Detroit, Michigan voters head to the polls for next Tuesday’s primary, they will decide on a referendum concerning a major proposed revision of the city charter which would institute numerous left-wing programs and reforms.

The ballot item, known as “Proposal P,” provides for the creation of a new “Task Force on Reparations and African American Justice,” an “Office of Economic Justice and Consumer Empowerment,” a “Department of Environmental Justice and Sustainability” and an “Office of Immigrant Affairs,” among other new government offices. 

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Michigan Gov. Whitmer Pitches $100 Million for Affordable Housing

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced plans to spend $100 million of federal stimulus money on affordable housing.

According to the governor’s claims, the proposal would assist 6,000 Michiganders, produce 2,000 rental housing units, and leverage an additional $380 million in private funding while creating 1,600 jobs.

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Michigan’s $348.7 Million Pandemic Relief Bill, with Funds for Child Care, Hospitals, Signed into Law

Jim Stamas

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has signed Senate Bill 27 to appropriate $384.7 million in supplemental pandemic relief funding.

Signed by the governor on Monday afternoon, the bill also provides $10 million of financial support for Southeast Michigan families and businesses that endured massive flooding in June.

SB 27 was introduced by Sen. Jim Stamas, R-Midland, in January. The bill combines $367.7 million of federal COVID relief funding authorized through the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act and $17 million from the state’s general fund.

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Michigan Gubernatorial Candidate Craig: Leftist Officials Who Use Private Security Should Stop Bashing Police and Gun Owners

Former Detroit, Michigan police chief and Republican gubernatorial candidate James Craig, speaking on Fox News on Monday, denounced progressive public officials who retain security professionals while bashing police and firearm owners. 

Craig expressed his reprehension in response to reports of campaign-finance documents showing Representative Cori Bush (D-MO-1) has spent $70,000 on private security professionals.

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Michigan Reading Scholarship Advocates Lament ‘Anti-Voucher’ Rhetoric Used Against Vetoed Program

When Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer (D-MI) line-item vetoed a $155 million program for K-5 reading scholarships in the $17 billion school budget she signed earlier this month, teachers’ unions and other school choice opponents likened the scholarships to vouchers. 

Many proponents of the scholarship expenditure are responding that while they would welcome broader choice-oriented education reform, a plain reading of the program does not jibe with unions’ and school administrators stated concerns about impact on public education.

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Scandal-Plagued Michigan Lawmaker Spent Campaign Funds at Strip Club

Just after escaping headlines for a drunk driving arrest wherein he attempted to use Democrat Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s name to threaten police, state Rep. Jewell Jones (D-Inkster) is back in the news.

“A Michigan lawmaker reported spending $221 of his campaign money at a strip club in Dearborn for a March 8 ‘constituent meeting’ to discuss ‘potential economic projects,’ according to a disclosure filed Sunday,” The Detroit News reported.

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Michigan Could Get $800 Million from Opioid Settlement

Close up of white pills

Michigan could receive $800 million under a proposed multibillion-dollar national opioid settlement, Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel said.

The settlement would involve Johnson & Johnson and the three largest pharmaceutical distributors in the country: Cardinal Health, McKesson, and AmerisourceBergen.

The historic agreement would resolve the claims of state and local governments nationwide and require industry changes.

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FBI Investigating Agent Who Allegedly Violently Assaulted Wife

The lead investigator in the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) case against more than a dozen men who allegedly plotted to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) has legal troubles of his own, as reported by The Detroit News. 

“An FBI agent at the center of the investigation into the plot to kidnap and kill Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is accused of smashing his wife’s head against a nightstand and choking her after a dispute stemming from their attendance at a swingers’ party, according to court records,” that news outlet reported this week. 

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Feds Won’t Investigate Michigan Gov. Whitmer’s COVID-19 Nursing Home Policy

Old woman sitting on brown bench

The U.S. Department of Justice won’t investigate Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s nursing home policies.

The initial inquiry was opened under former President Donald Trump’s administration, which requested data from Michigan.

Now, 11 months later under Joe Biden’s administration, the probe won’t happen. Democrat Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel refused to investigate as well.

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It’s Official: Retired Detroit Police Chief Craig to Challenge Michigan Governor Whitmer

James Craig, who served as chief of Police in Detroit, MI, since 2013 and retired this spring, is running for governor of the Great Lake State, he announced to Fox News’s Tucker Carlson Wednesday night.

Craig has formed a gubernatorial exploratory committee to begin his run against Democratic incumbent Governor Gretchen Whitmer.

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Michigan Lawmakers Fail to Override Whitmer’s Veto of $155 Million for Reading Program

The GOP-led Michigan Legislature failed to override Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s veto of $155 million to help struggling youngsters recover from COVID-19 learning loss.

The vote was 54-54. A two-thirds majority vote is required to override a Whitmer’s line-item veto of a designation in House Bill 4411 that would have disbursed $155 million to Grand Valley State University (GVSU) to start a grant program for students who have fallen behind.

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FBI Agent in Gov. Whitmer Kidnapping Case Arrested for a ‘Domestic Incident’ with Wife

Whitmer FBI Building

The FBI agent credited with stopping a kidnapping plot against Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has been arrest for ” intent to do great bodily harm, less than murder following a domestic incident with his wife Sunday,” the Detroit News reports.

FBI Special Agent Richard Trask, 39, of Kalamazoo was released on a $10,000 personal recognizance bond following arraignment.

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Former Detroit Police Chief Bashes Whitmer in Speech to GOP Group

The former chief of police in Detroit slammed Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) in a speech to the Kent County Republican Party Monday night. 

“The young people of today don’t want to sit at home and get free money,” James Craig said. “They want to experience the world, and in fact, they want to change the world. You can’t change the world sitting at home in your pajamas getting free money waiting on Queen Gretchen to issue her royal decree.”

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Michigan Jobs 322,000 Under Pre-Pandemic Level

Detroit skyline at night

Sixteen months after the COVID-19 pandemic began, Michigan is still behind 322,000 jobs compared to pre-pandemic in Feb. 2020. 

Michigan’s seasonally adjusted jobless rate of 5% percent was unchanged in June, according to data released by the Michigan Department of Technology, Management & Budget.

“Michigan’s labor market indicators were little changed in June,” Wayne Rourke, the associate director of the Bureau of Labor Market Information and Strategic Initiatives, said in a statement. “The Michigan unemployment rate has been near 5.0 percent for five consecutive months. Payroll job counts in June were similar to March levels.”

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Michigan Secretary of State Says Backlog Should Clear by September

Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson

Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson said the 15-month backlog for processing transactions through her office should be cleared by Labor Day or the end of September.

Outside a Mason branch office, Benson touted her efforts to slash down part of the backlog after all 131 branch officers were shuttered to walk-in service in response to COVID-19 by opening 350,000 additional appointments by optimizing appointment times, extending hours, and offering more services online.

From July 19 to Sept 30, all offices will stay open until 6 p.m. on Mondays and Thursdays and open at 8 a.m. on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. Previous office hours were 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. from Monday through Friday.

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Effectiveness of Michigan’s COVID-19 Lottery Unclear

Gov. Whitmer Vaccine

When Gov. Gretchen Whitmer budgeted $5 million of taxpayer money for the state’s vaccine lottery, she aimed to incentivize a nine percentage point rise in first COVID-19 injections.

It doesn’t seem to be working.

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Gov. Whitmer Secures $10 Million Grant to Expand Employment Opportunities

A male doing electrical work with a ball cap and safety glasses on

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced the Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity (LEO) has been awarded a $10 million federal grant to support the state’s registered apprenticeship expansion efforts.

“As we put Michigan back to work, Registered Apprenticeship programs offer on-ramps to high-demand, high-skill careers, and in Michigan we have committed to expanding these educational opportunities to ensure more Michiganders can get good-paying jobs,” Whitmer said in a statement.

“Increasing access to education and training opportunities will help us achieve our 60 by 30 goal to have 60% of Michigan’s adult with post-secondary education or skills training by 2030, improve the quality of life and help Michiganders secure good-paying jobs, and ensure businesses have the workforce they need to succeed and grow our economy.” 

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Michigan Senate Approves Petition to Revoke Whitmer’s Pandemic Powers

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer

The GOP-led Michigan Senate approved the Unlock Michigan campaign on a 20-15 vote, likely ending the 1945 law employed by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer to exercise pandemic powers for the past 16 months.

Democrats and Republicans exchanged heated remarks over COVID-19 policy. 

“This petition will hamstring our leaders of both parties — from preventing or slowing the spread of a deadly disease. This is about our ability to react to other pandemics and disasters in the future,” Sen. Rosemary Bayer, D-Beverly Hills, said pre-vote.

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Gov. Whitmer Vetoes Business Tax Breaks a Day After Touting Small Businesses

Gov. Whitmer Aretha Franklin Hwy

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Tuesday vetoed a bill that would have given small businesses an option for a tax breaks.

The governor wrote a letter explaining she vetoed the bill because it was too costly and would “primarily benefit a small number of Michiganders.”

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25-Year-Old East Lansing Mayor Resigns to Go Back to School

Aaron Stephens - Mayor of East Lansing

The 25-year-old mayor of East Lansing, appointed to the position in 2020 during a year of turmoil for the city, is resigning in August in order to further his education.

“My program begins in late August, so I will be stepping down from my position as mayor, and as a member of the city council, because I will be unable to attend four regular and two discussion-only meetings before my term is over,” Mayor Aaron Stephens said in a Facebook post. 

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Board of State Canvassers Certifies Unlock Michigan Petition

Inside Michigan Supreme Court

After two orders from the Michigan Supreme Court, the State Board of Canvassers unanimously certified the Unlock Michigan petition aiming to revoke Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s emergency powers.

The petition heads to the GOP-led Legislature where its expected to be quickly approved, spokeswoman of Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey of Clarklake, Abby Walls, said. 

“Seeing as opponents have finally run out of absurd challenges, we will take it up as soon as Secretary [Jocelyn] Benson sends.” 

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Michigan GOP House Members Push Back Against State AG’s Investigation of Election Skeptics

Five Michigan House GOP members sent Attorney General Dana Nessel a letter threatening to file articles of impeachment against her if she prosecutes anyone profiting from spreading lies about the 2020 presidential election.

The irony is that a Senate GOP report “found no evidence of widespread or systematic fraud in Michigan’s prosecution of the 2020 election” and even asked Nessel to investigate Michiganders making “misleading and false information about Antrim County to raise money or publicity for their own ends.”

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Flint Water Settlement Fairness Hearing Starts Monday

The hearing to determine the official approval of the state’s $600 million Flint water civil settlement began Monday at 10 a.m. in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan.

In January, Judge Judith Levy preliminarily approved the settlement establishing the process for eligible Flint residents to file settlement claims processed and paid by the claims administrator.

In August, Attorney General Dana Nessel and Gov. Gretchen Whitmer  announced the state’s portion of the preliminary agreement to settle the lawsuits  after the city of Flint switched its public water supply to the Flint River in 2014.

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Michigan Supreme Court Nixes Secretary of State Benson’s Redistricting Extension Request

The Michigan Supreme Court denied a request from Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson and the Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission to grant an extension for redrawing the state’s district map.

Benson and the ICRC filed a Petition for Relief with the Court in April, asking the Court to recognize the ICRC’s constitutionally imposed deadline as “unrealistic.” The petition argued the new timeline would ensure the Bureau of Elections had sufficient time to update the state’s voter registration database with the new district lines. Additionally, they argued, local clerks would be able to create and provide every voter with a correct ballot.

The extension was requested because of the six-month delay of 2020 U.S. Census data due to the coronavirus pandemic, which, it anticipated, would precipitate lawsuits. U.S. Census data is scheduled to become available Oct. 1. The ICRC was seeking to move its deadline from mid-September to Dec. 11, which would push back approval of final district maps to Jan. 25, 2022. The deadline for the filing of candidates for the November 2022 election is April 15.

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State Supreme Court Again Orders ‘Unlock Michigan’ Petition Certified

Unlock Michigan sign

For the second time, the Michigan Supreme Court has ordered the State Board of Canvassers certify the Unlock Michigan petition that will likely revoke Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s 1945 emergency powers.

On June 11, the top court ordered the State Board of Canvassers to certify the petition after the board deadlocked 2-2 on multiple motions. But Keep Michigan Safe (KMS) lawyer Mark Brewer filed a motion asking the top court to reconsider the order.

The top court answered, again ordering the petition to be certified.

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Gov. Whitmer to Spend $15.6 Million on Economic Recovery

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity (LEO) announced grants totaling more than $15.6 million to help get Michigan back to work. 

The government awarded Michigan Learning and Education Advancement Program (MiLEAP) grants to 10 groups who will help support individuals who are dislocated, underemployed, essential workers, living in distressed rural and urban communities, or economically disadvantaged.

“My administration is committed to uplifting Michiganders whose economic security has been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic,” Whitmer said in a statement. “By providing grants to help people make the move from education or training programs to good-paying, high-skill jobs, we can ensure all Michiganders thrive as we continue our economic jumpstart. The Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity and their Regional Consortia partners will help people get back on their feet and take the next step on their path to financial security.”

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Michigan Attorney General to Investigate Individuals Who Raised Election Security Concerns

Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel announced on Thursday that her office will use taxpayer funds and the state’s police to investigate people who raised concerns of the security of the November 2020 election.

According to the attorney general’s spokesperson, she will accept a request from Michigan GOP state senators to examine individuals allegedly earned money from false claims.

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Michigan State Auditor to Review Nursing Home COVID-19 Deaths

State Auditor Doug Ringler says he will review how many Michiganders died from COVID-19 in nursing homes and long-term care facilities.

Ringler wrote the June letter to House Oversight Chair Steve Johnson, R-Wayland, over the concerns of inaccurately counted COVID-19 deaths in nursing homes.

“We will be working with various departments’ databases to address your concerns, which will impact the timing of our work,” Ringler wrote. 

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Study: Michigan’s Vaccine Lottery Unlikely to Boost Lagging COVID-19 Injections

COVID Vaccine sticker

After Michigan missed President Joe Biden’s vaccine deadline of 70% injected with a first COVID-19 vaccine by July 4, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer bet big on a vaccine lottery, tossing in $5 million of taxpayer-funded prizes.

In the meantime, the Michigan Senate Fiscal Agency estimates Michigan won’t reach the 70% benchmark for another year.

As of July 5, the state averaged 4,174 daily doses but only 1,740 first doses (0.1%) of the population.

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Michigan Gov. Whitmer Veto Places 136 At-Risk Kids’ Lives into Uncertainty, Critics Say

When Gov. Gretchen Whitmer vetoed House Bill 4945, she threw into uncertainty the futures of 136 at-risk Detroit kids, supporters of the measure say.

Possibilities include prison, the streets, or shipping them across the state to another Strict Disciplinary Academy (SDA) instead of allowing them an education through Ace Academy in Highland Park.

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Michigan Follows Ohio, Implements Vaccine Lottery Program

Michigan has become the latest state to implement a plan to bribe its residents into receiving the COVID-19 vaccine. 

Following Ohio, which, led by Republican Gov. Mike DeWine encouraged people to get the vaccine and enter into vaccine lottery, Michigan’s Democrat Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has done the same. 

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Former Justice Urges Michigan Redistricting Committee to Ignore UM Advice, Use Geographical – Not Ethnic – Boundaries

Former Michigan Supreme Court Justice Stephen Markman urged Michigan’s independent redistricting committee to use geographical boundaries instead of racial, ethnic, or religious groups to determine the state’s new voting boundaries.

Markman took to the Wall Street Journal opinion page June 25 to air his concerns.

Markman, who retired from the Michigan Supreme Court in 2020, supports drawing boundaries via neighborhoods, instead of “communities of interest,” such as shared concerns for which a University of Michigan report advocated.

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Michigan State University Student Government Demands Free Menstrual Products in All Campus Bathrooms

Free menstrual products in all campus bathrooms is the latest demand of the Michigan State University student government. 

Passing a resolution June 24, the Associated Students of Michigan State University assert “transgender people, non-binary people, gender non-conforming people,” and women are able to menstruate. 

Further, these groups “are not given the same access to these products in the restrooms that coincide with their gender.” 

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Michigan Employment Numbers Pick Up Pace for State’s Pandemic Recovery

Blue Collar worker with hard hat on

Michigan’s recovery from the massive unemployment endured during the COVID-19 pandemic is among the fastest in the country, last week’s employment numbers indicate.

That assessment is according to a recently released WalletHub report, which ranked the state fifth nationwide for progress made between the previous week and the week of June 21, 2021, and fourth nationwide for the smallest increase in initial unemployment claims between the beginning of 2020 and the week of June 21, 2021.

Michigan was ranked 13th nationwide for quickest unemployment recovery since the beginning of the pandemic in March 2020.

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Gov. Whitmer Signs Emergency Insulin, Education Bills into Law

Gov. Whitmer signed a flurry of bills Thursday with topics ranging from affordable insulin to changing college scholarship metrics.

“I am committed to bringing Republicans and Democrats together to make real, lasting change for Michigan families,” Whitmer said in a statement. “For people living with diabetes, access to insulin is a matter of life and death. I’m proud to sign Senate Bills 155 and 156 because they ensure access to an emergency insulin supply for people facing an interruption of care, and require insurance to cover that emergency supply. I’m also proud to sign House Bills 4055 and 4056 – students should be able to afford a college education based on their overall scholastic achievement, especially when facing unprecedented obstacles to taking otherwise required tests like the ACT and SAT. ”

Senate Bill (SB) 155 aims to ensure access to emergency insulin supply at an affordable cost by allowing pharmacists to dispense an emergency supply of insulin to individuals with an expired but otherwise valid prescription issued within the last 12 months.

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Michigan Senate Passes $17 Billion Budget Plan

The Michigan Senate passed a plan totaling $17 billion for K-12 schools, hours before the budget deadline that levies no penalties for late action.

The real deadline for the state budget is Sept. 30, ahead of the Oct. 1 start of the state’s fiscal year.

House Bill 4410 passed on a 34-0 vote, which Senate Appropriations Chair Jim Stamas, R-Midland, called an “immediate priority.” The bill includes $10 million to repair natural disaster relief in cities flooded in June 2021.

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Bill Aims to Stop Sale of Michigan Secretary of State Appointments

A bill introduced to the Michigan Legislature aims to stop the black-market sale of Secretary of State (SOS) appointments.

When SOS Jocelyn Benson in May said the state would permanently end walk-in service, arguing the walk-in system was inefficient, the announcement sparked a black market of Michiganders so desperate for an appointment some chose to pay for an otherwise free service.

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Michigan Lawmakers Pitch $15 Million Plan to Expand Detroit Police Athletic League

House Speaker Jason Wentworth, R-Clare, and state Rep. Karen Whitsett, D-Detroit, announced a plan to spend $15 million in state funding to support community policing in Detroit and nearby communities.

The proposal seeks to fund the Detroit Police Athletic League’s (PAL) new Community Connection Initiative, which aims to spread athletics and mentorship programs across the state.

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Michigan House Passes Bipartisan Budget, Including Historic Increases in Education Spending

Jason Wentworth

Although she thinks it’s only a “start,” Gov. Gretchen Whitmer applauded the bipartisan budget passed Thursday night by the Michigan House of Representatives.

The House voted to pass the budget before the July 1 deadline, and includes the governor’s proposal to implement the largest increase in K-12 public school spending in the state’s history. Whitmer’s office claims the $16.7 billion in school expenditures will “close the gap between the lowest- and highest-funded school districts for the first time since the goal was introduced in 1994.”

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Gov. Whitmer Vetoes PPP Tax Refund Bills Days After Business Summit

Two days after touting her administrations support of Michigan’s small businesses, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer vetoed bipartisan bills that would have exempted certain business purchases of personal protection equipment (PPE) from the 6% state sales tax.

The bills would have offered businesses exemptions and refunds for sales or use tax paid on PPE retroactive to March 10, 2020, through 2021.

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Michigan Senate Votes to End $300 Weekly Federal Unemployment Benefits

The Michigan Senate voted 19-16 to approve House Bill 4434, which aims to end the state’s participation in boosted $300/week federal unemployment program.

Republicans have argued the benefit hinders economic recovery 15 months after the pandemic started.

Business owners told lawmakers on June 17 they can’t find workers, even after hiking pay, signing bonuses, and flexible hours. Some industries have seen as many as 35% of workers not return post-COVID-19, leaving some gas stations wondering if they’ll get enough gas.

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