Ben Thorp

MOUNT PLEASANT, MI (MPRN)--   A new resolution in the state senate urges President Trump and the Air Force to consider bringing the headquarters of Space Force to Michigan. 

The resolution follows on the heels of the city of Sterling Heights submitting a bid for consideration to be the site of Space Force’s command center. 

Republican State Senator Michael MacDonald introduced the resolution. He said he wants to turn Michigan into a “space state.” 

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   A Michigan judge ruled Wednesday to keep a temporary restraining order against Enbridge in place while allowing the company to resume operations through the western leg of the Line 5 pipeline.

The order stops short of granting Attorney General Dana Nessel’s request for an injunction against the company, instead extending and modifying the existing restraining order.

Enbridge will be allowed to restart the western leg of Line 5 in order to conduct safety testing. The eastern portion will remain shut down.

MOUNT PLEASANT, MI (MPRN)--   More than 1,000 workers at downstate McLaren Health have been placed on temporary furlough due to the COVID-19 outbreak. 

The Michigan Nurses Association is calling on the hospital system to cut executive salaries before laying off nurses. The union says staff should be retrained to assist frontline healthcare workers before getting furloughed or laid off.

Josh Straus works at McLaren Central Michigan. He says he has been fully furloughed for two weeks.

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   Michigan Republicans released plans for addressing the state’s response to COVID-19 Monday.

The plans would regionalize the state’s approach to shutdowns and adherence to the governor’s stay-at-home order.

The state house plan would break the state’s 83 counties into three tiers: those at highest, heightened, or standard risk for the spread of the virus.

Speaker of the House Lee Chatfield says Michigan has so far taken a one-size-fits-all approach, and that isn’t working.

MOUNT PLEASANT, MI (MPRN)--   Michigan sheriffs say they’ve already been taking steps to mitigate coronavirus in local jails.

Governor Gretchen Whitmer released an executive order over the weekend outlining the steps that jails and the state Department of Corrections should be taking.

The order suspends transfers from local jails to the state prisons. It also encourages local jails to consider early release for prisoners that do not pose a public risk and are old, medically frail, or incarcerated for mental health problems.

MOUNT PLEASANT, MI (MPRN)--   Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson is reminding voters who have already voted absentee for a candidate that has since dropped out of the race that they can cast a new ballot. 

Following South Carolina’s primary several presidential candidates, including Pete Buttiegieg, Tom Steyer, and Amy Klobachar, have withdrawn from the race.

Jake Rollow is with the Secretary of State's Office. 

MOUNT PLEASANT, MI (MPRN)--   Some Michigan lawmakers want to end what they call “prison gerrymandering.”

The US Census counts prisoners as part of the population where the prisons are located.

Supporters of the legislation say the practice can unfairly increase population counts in some political districts and leads to those districts holding disproportionate power.

Democratic State Senator Sylvia Santana introduced a bill that would require the state count prisoners at their pre-incarceration address when drawing political districts.

MOUNT PLEASANT, MI (MPRN)--   A proposed nuclear waste site on the shores of Lake Huron in Canada has been voted down by the Native tribe that owns the land.  

The Saugeen-Ojibway Nation, on whose land the nuclear storage site was proposed, voted overwhelmingly to oppose the placement of the site on their territory. 

Fred Kuntz is a spokesperson for Ontario Power Generation, which proposed the storage site.

“The decision was clear from Saugeen-Ojibway nation  and OPG respects that decision. Next steps include moving forward to find an alternate solution.”

State unveils map of shipwrecks

Jan 14, 2020

MOUNT PLEASANT, MI (MPRN)--   Michigan’s history center has launched an interactive map showing the location and history of shipwrecks in the Great Lakes.  

The map focuses on ships that were wrecked in Michigan waters, which means it doesn’t include wrecks like the Edmund Fitzgerald, which went down in Canadian waters. 

Sandra Clark is with the Michigan History Center. She says the map includes roughly 300 shipwrecks with information for visitors about the history of wrecks and whether they can be viewed from a kayak.

Asian Carp detected in Chicago

Nov 11, 2019

CHICAGO, IL (MPRN)--   Environmental DNA tests last week were positive for Asian Carp in the Chicago River. 

Experts say additional research is needed but the DNA could be coming from a fish market. 

The positive Environmental DNA tests were cause for alarm. Officials with the Michigan DNR reiterated the urgency around installing a barrier to keep Asian Carp from reaching Lake Michigan. 

The tests were within Chicago – close to Lake Michigan – and showed multiple positive hits for Asian Carp.