Rick Pluta

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   Governor Gretchen Whitmer says Michigan has encouraged students to seek four-year college degrees at the expense of encouraging careers in skilled trades. 

The Whitmer administration says that’s cost the state’s economy, employers, and workers.

The governor toured a Detroit community college to make her point. She says less than half of high school graduates in Michigan seek advanced schooling. And she says that means many lost opportunities, even during good economic times.

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   Governor Gretchen Whitmer is urging the Legislature to return to Lansing to vote on the state budget and revenue to fix the roads. GOP leaders say they won’t be pushed. 

Michigan Public Radio’s Rick Pluta was with the governor during a stop at a community college in Detroit.

Whitmer says the Legislature’s Republican leaders need to move faster to adopt a new state budget. She says local governments and school districts are already into their budget years, which are on a different calendar than the state’s fiscal year.

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   A request to expand a legal challenge against Michigan State University has the potential to reverse many findings against students accused of sexual assault. 

The motion was first reported by The Detroit Free Press. The initial lawsuit claims MSU’s disciplinary system denied due process to the man accused of assault. That’s because there was no chance for direct, in-person questioning of the woman who made the accusation.

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   The Michigan Supreme Court will decide whether to take a case to determine whether it’s ever appropriate for state money to go to private and parochial schools.

Michigan public school groups and the ACLU are challenging budget bills that were approved by Republican legislatures and then-Governor Rick Snyder. They allow a small amount of money to reimburse private schools for some expenses.

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   A technology upgrade that’s supposed to help consumers threatens to shut down the system for keeping track of felons and sex offenders who’ve been released from prison.

Electronic tethers that keep track of offenders could go dark at the end of the year.

The state Corrections Department keeps track of 4,600 offenders using electronic tethers.

Chris Gautz is with the department. He says the tethers are attached to Verizon’s 3-G network that’s supposed to go dark at the end of the year, to be replaced by the 4-G network.

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   Governor Gretchen Whitmer has announced more than $1 million will go to hospitals to help create better systems for treating people with opioid addiction.

The governor says reducing opioid abuse is a top priority of her administration.

Whitmer says opioid addiction is a large and growing problem. She says one reason is people end up at emergency rooms after they overdose, but they are often released without a follow-up plan.

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   Governor Gretchen Whitmer says money and political clout are at stake in the upcoming US Census. She says Michigan stands to lose a great deal if everyone doesn’t participate.

Michigan’s lost five congressional seats since the 1980s due to fewer people counted by the Census bureau. That’s meant less political influence in Washington. The census also helps determine federal funding for health care, schools and roads.

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   A state lawmaker wants to amend the Michigan Constitution to ensure there is a right to keep electronically stored information private.

State Senator Jim Runestad says laws have not kept pace with the ways personal information can be taken from computers, cell phones, tablets and web sites. He says law enforcement should not be allowed to go searching through a person’s electronically stored information without a court’s permission.

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   A state elections board began working Monday on new rules for how petition signatures are collected for citizen initiatives and ballot questions. 

That’s a response to a formal opinion from state Attorney General Dana Nessel. She says a law adopted last year that makes it more difficult for petition drives to succeed is unconstitutional. Republicans have filed a legal challenge to the opinion.

Democrat Jeannette Bradshaw chairs the Michigan Board of State Canvassers. She says the board has to keep working while waiting to see what the courts decide.

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   The National Transportation Safety Board blames human error and equipment failures for an anchor strike that dented the Line 5 pipelines. 

Attorney General Dana Nessel says the report is evidence the twin pipelines needs to be removed from the Great Lakes.

The NTSB report says the vessel was short-staffed during the Easter weekend as a technical malfunction allowed an anchor to drag on the lakebed. It struck Line 5 and the pipelines were dented.

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