Michigan House Approves over $4 Billion of COVID-19 Recovery, Sends to Gov. Whitmer

On Wednesday, the Michigan House passed over $4 billion of COVID-19 recovery spending that ties over $1 billion of the funding to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer relinquishing the pandemic powers she’s held for nearly a year.

Federal funding comprises about $3.4 billion of the funds.

Read More

Michigan Republican House Rep Calls for Transparency in Former MDHHS Separation Deal

A Republican member of the state House of Representatives is calling for the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) to reveal to the public the agreement it had with former director Robert Gordon, who abruptly resigned on February 22. 

“I am calling on the Department today to release to the public the separation agreement between Governor [Gretchen] Whitmer’s administration and former MDHHS Director Robert Gordon as well as any other similar agreements made with other public officials,” state Rep. Steve Johnson (R-MI-72) said in Tuesday letter to MDHHS. 

Read More

State of Michigan Charges Woman for Caring for Animals Without Permit, Kills Animals

Six animals were killed by the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) after they were confiscated from an Emmet County farm, where the agency says the owner did not have a permit to rehabilitate the animals. 

“Kei Ju Farm, located in Petoskey, is widely known for its open-door policy for both community members and animals,” Petoskey News reported. “This year, the DNR received a complaint about owner, Julie Hall, rehabilitating wild animals on the farm. The farm is not a Michigan Licensed Rehabilitation facility.”

Read More

Michigan Gov. Whitmer’s Ex-MDHHS Director Got $155,500-Taxpayer-Funded Payout to Leave Quietly

When state health director Robert Gordon abruptly resigned in January, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer didn’t mention his $155,506-taxpayer-funded payout.

That sum was equal to nine months of Gordon’s annual salary and health benefits. The monies received by Gordon release the state from any potential legal claims.

Read More

Former Republican Congressman Endorses Ending Qualified Immunity

A former Republican congressman known for his public spats with former president Donald J. Trump has expressed his support for a bill introduced by two progressive Democrats that would end qualified immunity for law enforcement officers. 

“End qualified immunity. Thanks to [Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-MA-07)] and [Sen. Ed Markey (D-MA)] for reintroducing our bill in this Congress,” Justin Amash said on Twitter. 

Read More

Michigan an Outlier in Comparative State Restaurant Restrictions

Nearly a year after the COVID-19 pandemic began, Michigan is surrounded by states that dropped restaurant restrictions while Michigan restaurants statewide are still capped at 25% capacity and a 10 p.m. curfew.

Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, and Wisconsin have no statewide restaurant capacity limits, according to the Michigan Restaurant and Lodging Association (MRLA).

Read More

Gov. Whitmer: Michigan on Track to Reopen Schools, but Mum on Raising Restaurant Patron Limits

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer used her Wednesday news conference to stress her goal to return all of the state’s public schools to in-person learning by next Monday, March 1.

However, restaurants and bars won’t witness relief from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services’ 25% capacity limit on patrons.

Read More

Mason Public School Teacher Quits After School Refuses Radical Black Lives Matter Teaching Curriculum

A Mason Public Schools special education teacher resigned Friday after the school district refused to allow her to indoctrinate students with a radical Black Lives Matter and social justice curriculum.

Katelyne Thomas was a first through fifth grade teacher in the school system near Lansing, who in January suggested to her superiors that the school should implement the Black Lives Matter at School learning program during the first week of February, which is Black History Month, according to The Detroit Free Press.

Read More

UM: Students Reporting Huge Spike in Anxiety, Depression During COVID-19

Continuing with a national trend, a University of Michigan study found that college students reported record levels of anxiety and depression during the fall semester of the 2020 school year, during nationwide COVID-19 lockdowns. 

“The UM Healthy Minds Study, an annual web-based survey looking at mental health and service utilization among undergraduate and graduate students, found that 47% of respondents screened positive for clinically significant symptoms of depression and/or anxiety – up from 44% last year and the highest since the survey started in 2007,” according to Michigan Live.

Read More

Michigan Gov. Whitmer Under Fire for Nursing Home COVID Policy

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) could be the subject of an investigation regarding her handling of nursing home patients who contracted COVID-19. 

“Gov. Whitmer’s regional hub policy placed patients with and without COVID-19 in the same facilities and may have exacerbated the death toll in those facilities,” said state Sen. Jim Runestad (R-White Lake) in a press release. “Questions remain regarding the accuracy of data, compliance with CDC guidelines and compliance with our state’s Freedom of Information Act. There is a critical need for a full investigation into these matters.”

Read More

Minnesota Lt. Gov. Suggests Bigotry to Blame for Opposition to Haaland Appointment

Without evidence, Minnesota’s Democrat Lieutenant Governor suggested that opposition to the appointment of Rep. Deb Haaland (D-NM-01) to be the United States Secretary of the Interior is rooted in anti-Native American bigotry. 

“Boozhoo! This is Peggy Flanagan. I’m a member of the White Earth Band of Ojibwe and Lieutenant Governor of Minnesota,” Lt. Gov. Peggy Flanagan said in a video on Twitter, urging her followers to support Haaland.

Read More

More Michiganders Than Ever Obtained Concealed Pistol License Permits in January, Gun Group Says

Gun, ammo sales, and concealed pistol license (CPL) applicants have skyrocketed in Michigan since 2020.

In January 2021, Michigan added 13,891 net CPL holders to reach 717,281 – the most significant one-month change since 2008, when the Michigan Coalition for Responsible Gun Owners started tracking monthly records.

Read More

Michigan Public School Forced to Change Mascot over Racism Concerns

Saugatuck Public Schools will no longer use the nickname “Indians,” after an 11-year saga culminated into the changing of the school system’s mascot over concerns of racial insensitivity. 

According to Tuesday reports, the school will now use the nickname “Trailblazers,” following the trend of professional and other sports teams changing their nicknames from anything related to Native American culture. 

Read More

Former Michigan House Speaker Resigns from New Job After Pressure from LGBT Community

The Republican former Speaker of the Michigan House of Representatives Monday resigned from his new post as Chief Executive Officer of the nonprofit Southwest Michigan First (SWMF) after the organization faced backlash from the LGBT community for hiring him. 

“For the betterment of the Kalamazoo community, the businesses that the board of directors represent, the staff at SWMF and for the sake of my conscience, please see the letter of resignation I offered this morning. I remain grateful for having had this incredible opportunity,” Lee Chatfield said on Twitter. 

Read More

Embattled Whitmer Declares State of Emergency During Michigan Cold Snap

Whitmer MI Capitol overcast

Embattled Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D), known for her strict and sometimes unconstitutional COVID-19 lockdown measures, signed an emergency order Saturday reducing commercial trucking regulations while the state faces severe winter weather. 

“As many states have been experiencing consistent extreme cold temperatures, the demand for energy has increased significantly, which has put a strain on the nation’s energy infrastructure,” a press release from Whitmer’s office said. “Michigan has experienced an abnormally high demand for propane from in-state and regional consumers, causing longer lines at propane distribution centers. In an effort to reduce this strain and ensure a consistent flow of energy, the executive order temporarily suspends restrictions on commercial driver hours to allow the immediate delivery of energy to homes and businesses.”

Read More

Macomb County Restaurants Sue Whitmer Seeking Damages for Nearly a Year of Restaurant Restrictions

A Macomb County restaurant group has filed a lawsuit against Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and other state entities.

In the lawsuit filed Feb. 8 in Macomb County Circuit Court, the Macomb County Restaurant, Bar, and Banquet Association (MCRBBA) alleges top state officials violated the state Constitution’s Taking Clause by closing businesses for the past 11 months with just compensation and are seeking damages.

Read More

Michigan Internet Gaming Reaps $42.7 Million in Gross Receipts in First 10 Days

Sports Book Betting

Michigan internet gaming and sports betting operators reported $42.7 million in gross receipts for the 10 days after its initial launch.

Michigan’s online sportsbooks generated $115.2 million in wagers in the 10 days in January, according to the Michigan Gaming Control Board (MGCB).

Read More

Nonprofit Law Center Fighting for Michigan Man Fired for Saying ‘All Lives Matter’

A legal nonprofit has taken the case of a Michigan man who was fired from his job for using the phrase “All Lives Matter,” according to a press release.

Rick Beaudin, a Re/Max realtor in Pinckney, Michigan, posted what he thought was an innocuous comment on Facebook, in a response to Black Lives Matter organizing a protest there. 

Read More

Bill Aims to Add Michigan to Nurse Licensure Compact

Rep. Mary Whiteford, R-Casco Township, introduced a bill that aims to allow nurses who meet uniform licensing requirements to work in person or through telemedicine in more than 30 states.

“If Michigan were to become a part of the compact, only one license would be necessary for nurses to practice in Michigan or in any of the many other states in the compact,” Whiteford, a former nurse, said in a statement. “State-by-state licensure is incredibly time-consuming, especially for multiple license holders who wish to use telemedicine.”

Read More

Whitmer Proposes Firearms Ban at State Capitol in Michigan Budget Bill

ust a month after a group of unelected officials in Michigan banned the open carrying of firearms from the state Capitol, Michigan’s Democrat governor is attempting to codify that policy into law via the state’s budget bill.

The measure, which faces an uphill battle in the Republican-controlled state legislature, also includes five million taxpayer dollars to fund extra security at the Capitol, according to Associated Press.

Read More

NLRB Grants Michigan Construction Workers’ Petition to Vote on Union Removal

The National Labor Relations Board in Washington on Friday granted the petition of Michigan construction employees to defend their right to vote union bargaining representatives from the workplace.

The NLRB decision Friday overturns a November ruling by the Detroit NLRB, which dismissed two petitions filed by Rieth-Riley Construction Company employee Rayalan Kent and coworkers in which they requested a decertification vote against the International Union of Operating Engineers Local 324.

Read More

Michigan County GOP Censures Meijer over Trump Impeachment Vote

One county GOP in Michigan has voted to censure freshman Rep. Peter Meijer (R-MI-03) after Meijer voted to impeach former president Donald Trump alongside the entire Democrat Party. 

“It is with great sadness and solemnity that we write to issue this formal Letter of Censure and to condemn your recent vote in favor of House Resolution 24 impeaching President Donald J. Trump,” a letter from the Calhoun County Republican Executive Committee said. 

Read More

Republicans, Higher Education Advocates Concerned About Michigan Gov. Whitmer’s Budget Proposal

On Thursday, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer unveiled a $67 billion state budget aiming to recover the state from the COVID-19 pandemic by boosting education, infrastructure, and public health spending.

She proposed $570 million to address learning loss added to a $162-per-student, or 2% increase in base aid for most traditional districts

Read More

Michigan Gov. Whitmer Draws First 2022 Republican Challenger

Michigan’s Democrat governor has drawn her first challenger of the 2022 election cycle, and that candidate is already raising eyebrows. 

“From a seemingly homemade podium on his virtual stage, 35-year-old Austin Chenge is amassing thousands of social media followers as the first Republican candidate to enter the 2022 race for Michigan governor,” FOX17 reported. 

Read More

Michigan State Senator Demands Apologies So She Can Forgive Republican Colleagues, Suggests They’re All Racists and Sexists

In a bizarre speech on the floor of the Michigan legislature, a Democrat state Senator fought back tears while demanding apologies from unspecified Republican colleagues, while insinuating that they were racists and sexists. 

The following is a transcript from the speech, given by Sen. Stephanie Chang (D-1st District: 

Read More

Poll: Michiganders Skeptical of COVID Vaccine

According to a January U.S. Census Bureau poll, on average, Michiganders say they are less likely to take the COVID-19 vaccine than residents of other states. 

“An estimated 24% of Michigan adults age 18 and older say they are unlikely to get fully vaccinated against COVID-19, according to a new U.S. Census survey,” Michigan Live reported. “That includes 14% who say they ‘probably’ won’t get the vaccine; 9% who say they ‘definitely’ will not, and 1% who have received one dose but say they are not planning to get the second dose.”

Read More

Rep. Tlaib Bashes Dems for Income Threshold on Stimulus Checks

One Michigan Democrat is leading the charge against her own party’s proposal to put income caps on the latest batch of stimulus check. 

“If they succeed (in capping stimulus checks at $50,000 in income), it would leave millions of suffering families out of this relief bill,” Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI-13).

Read More

Forgivable PPP Loans May Have State Tax Implications for Michigan Businesses

Michigan businesses can accept their forgiven pandemic loans without worrying about paying federal taxes, but it’s not yet clear if they’ll owe state taxes.

More than 121,000 Michigan businesses took federal forgivable Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans valued at approximately $15.7 billion.

Read More

Michigan House Passes COVID-19 Recovery Plan, Would Also Limit Whitmer’s Powers

The Michigan House on Thursday approved a $3.5 billion bill that would make $2.1 billion in federal education funding contingent on Gov. Gretchen Whitmer relinquishing her power to shut down schools to local health departments.

The Republican’s COVID-19 recovery plan includes $33 million for vaccine distribution and $144 million for COVID-19 testing, allocated quarterly.

Read More

Michigan Gov. Whitmer Lifts Ban on Contact Sports After Lawsuit

  After being sued by a non-profit, high school athletes, and their families, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) has lifted the state’s ban on contact sports. “And while it’s important that we remain cautious, and adhere to safety protocols to prevent this virus from spreading once more, thanks to our efforts…

Read More

Michigan to Get $19.5 Million for Opioid Epidemic Settlement

Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel has joined 46 other attorneys general in a $573 million settlement with McKinsey & Co., regarding the company’s role in aggressively helping opioid companies promote their drugs.

Michigan will receive more than $19.5 million from the first opioid multistate settlement resulting in a substantial payment.

Read More

Michigan Gov. Whitmer Sued over Ban on Contact Sports

The Democrat governor of Michigan is being sued by several parties over her ban of contact sports at the high school level, which was recently extended until February 21. 

Let Them Play, Inc., a non-profit, along with the Michigan Amateur Youth Hockey League and players and parents of high school athletes, brought suit Wednesday against Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D), according to a legal complaint. 

Read More

Whitmer Wants Lawyers Who Challenged Election Results Disbarred

Michigan’s Democrat governor is once again tip-toeing towards authoritarianism, this time seeking the disbarment of attorneys who happen to be political opponents. 

“Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, Attorney General Dana Nessel and Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson, three Democrats who are lawyers themselves, filed complaints Monday with the Attorney Grievance Commission in Michigan and the State Bar of Texas,” according to The Detroit News. “Their filings ask that Michigan attorneys Greg Rohl, Scott Hagerstrom and Stefanie Junttila and Texas attorney Sidney Powell be disbarred and lose the ability to practice law in their states.”

Read More

Of the Nearly 1,200 Racial Incident Reports from 2015-2020 at Michigan State University, Only Eight Violated Policies

Over the past five years, nearly 1,200 Michigan State University students and staff members reported racial discrimination incidents. Only eight instances, however, truly violated the school’s bias and discrimination policies.

According to data provided to the Lansing State Journal by Michigan State’s Office of Institutional Equity, affiliates reported 1,187 instances of race-based bias and discrimination between 2015 and September 2020. Of those instances, 76 revealed issues with conduct, and of those 76 issues, eight instances — less than 1 percent of all reported — constituted violations of the school’s policies.

Read More

New Foreclosure Rules Align State Law with Michigan Supreme Court Ruling

The Michigan tax code is finally aligned with a 2020 Michigan Supreme Court ruling that prohibited county treasurers from pocketing excess equity when foreclosing on tax-delinquent homes.

The ruling followed Oakland County seizing Uri Rafaeli’s property in 2014 over an initial tax debt of $8.41, which rose to $285.81 after interest, penalties, and fees.

Read More

Michigan Cities’ Police Settlements Ranged from $3,400 to Nearly $18 Million from 2018-20

Michigan cities with similar populations relied on taxpayers to foot police-settlement payouts ranging from a few thousand dollars to nearly $18 million between 2018 and 2020, according to research conducted by The Center Square.

Freedom of Information Act requests revealed Detroit payouts from police damages in those two years totaled $17.79 million.

Read More

Michigan Republicans Welcome Gov. Whitmer’s Theme of ‘Common Ground’ but Remain Skeptical

On Thursday morning, Michigan Republicans welcomed Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s State of the State Address theme of “common ground,” but said they’re looking forward to action.

“The tone set is exactly what I think people Michiganders want to hear. But we need action and not just words and politics,” House Speaker Jason Wentworth, R-Clare, said.

Read More

Massive Protest at Michigan Capitol over Cancelation of Winter Sports

Thousands of Michiganders showed up at the Michigan Capitol Building Saturday to protest the state’s cancellation of winter sports, which was done in an effort to combat COVID-19. 

“A massive turnout at the state capitol today for the ‘Let Them Play’ rally against the postponement of winter sports,” FOX 17’s Zach Harig reported. 

Read More

Michigan’s GOP Senate Refuses to Confirm Whitmer Appointees

In an attempt to send a message to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D), Michigan’s Republican-led Senate is refusing to confirm her new appointees. 

“The state Senate rejected 13 of Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s appointees Wednesday to ‘send a signal that [Republicans are] displeased with [the] governor’s actions and refusal to listen [or] work with [the] Legislature,'” first reported by Michigan Advance. 

Read More

Republicans Counter Whitmer with $3.5 Billion COVID-19 Recovery Plan

A week after Gov. Gretchen Whitmer pitched a $5.6 billion COVID-19 recovery plan, House Republicans countered with their own plan — with a significantly smaller price tag. 

House Appropriations Chair Thomas Albert, R-Lowell, announced the $3.5 billion plan that would use federal and state funds to help struggling job providers and families, return kids to school and sports, and boost the vaccine distribution program.

Read More

Michigan Governor Whitmer Mostly Mum on MDHHS Director’s Abrupt Exit

In a news briefing Monday afternoon, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer introduced newly appointed Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Elizabeth Hertel.

However, she declined to answer questions from reporters regarding the abrupt departure of former MDHHS Director Robert Gordon late last week.

Read More

Michigan Dems Make List of Demands, Including Convicting Trump

The Democratic Party of Michigan started off its week with a list of demands, which it posted to its Twitter account Monday morning. 

“Today, the Senate will receive the Articles of Impeachment. They must swiftly move to convict Trump and hold him fully accountable for the violent attack our democracy,” the group said. “This comes in addition to passing more COVID relief and confirming President [Joe Biden’s] cabinet nominees.”

Read More

Michigan University Promotes Call to ‘Speak with your Legislators’ About Transgender Policies

A Michigan State University professor psychology professor urged the university community to lobby legislators for transgender policies in order to be an “ally” to the transgender community.

The university published an interview with Jae Puckett, an assistant professor in Michigan State University’s department of psychology clinical sciences program, that discussed “recognizing and respecting trans identities.” 

Read More

Michigan Health Director Resigns as Restaurants Set to Reopen

The top health official in Michigan has abruptly resigned as the state plans to reopen restaurants in the coming weeks, after months of strict lockdown orders.

“Today, I am resigning from the Whitmer Administration. It’s been an honor to serve alongside wonderful colleagues. I look forward to the next chapter,” Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Director Robert Gordon said Friday on Twitter. 

Read More

Online Gaming, Sports Betting Is Now Live in Michigan

For years, Michiganders have gambled online illegally. But when sports betting and online gambling are legalized for the first time on Friday, the state will reap its tax revenue. 

“The Michigan Gaming Control Board (MGCB) and the state’s commercial and tribal casinos will begin a new era Jan. 22 with the launch of regulated online gaming and sports betting,” Richard Kalm, MGCB executive director, said in a statement.

Read More

Entertainment Venues File Federal Takings Lawsuit Against Michigan Over 212-Day Shutdown

(The Center Square) – For the past 83 years, Peter Tomassoni’s family has run Recreation Lanes and the Antoin Room Banquet and Convention Center in Iron Mountain.

Less than one year under Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s restrictions to curb the spread of COVID-19, however, it could die, through no fault of the family.

Read More

Detroit Regional Chamber of Commerce PAC Evaluates Endorsement Criteria After Capitol Protest

The Detroit Regional Chamber of Commerce PAC released a statement Thursday condemning the mostly peaceful protests at the Capitol Building in Washington, D.C. on January 6, promising to re-evaluate the involvement of its current endorsees, along with potential future endorsees.

“Members of the business community in Michigan and nationally are carefully evaluating their political engagement in light of the Jan. 6 events at the U.S. Capitol,” the Chamber said. “Entities ranging from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to Fortune 500 firms based in Michigan have expressed dismay not just at what happened inside the Capitol, but also the actions of many that enabled this unprecedented act of sedition.”

Read More