Michigan Public Radio 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 (AP)--   All remaining criminal charges of city and state officials stemming from the Flint Water Crisis have been dismissed. 

The investigation was started by former Attorney General, Bill Schuette in 2016 after lead contaminated Flint’s drinking water when the city switched its water sources. Earlier this year, new AG Dana Nessel created the Flint Water Crisis prosecution team to handle the multiple pending cases and investigation going forward.

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.

housedems.com

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   Some Michigan lawmakers are trying – once again – to pass legislation that would require elected officials to file financial disclosures. It’s an issue that lawmakers have been trying to get past the finish line for decades. 

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)--   A jury is expected to begin deliberations Tuesday in the trial of former Michigan State University Dean William Strampel, who is accused of two felonies and two misdemeanors. 

Strampel was the dean of the College of Osteopathic Medicine at MSU. Prosecutors say he used his position as dean to try to get sexual favors from female students. They also say Strampel did not properly oversee Larry Nassar after an internal investigation. Nassar is the former MSU sports doctor who sexually assaulted his patients for years.

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   The state department in charge of Michigan’s prisons is not happy with a proposed spending plan in the state Legislature. 

A spending plan for the Michigan Department of Corrections passed out of a state House committee last week. It would redirect millions of dollars that previous budgets had allocated for certain projects – like prison maintenance – to other priorities.

Chris Gautz is a spokesman for the department. He says this could cause funding problems within the department.

Inman seeks treatment for opioids

Jun 7, 2019

TRAVERSE CITY, MI (MPRN)--   State Representative Larry Inman will seek treatment for opioid use, according to his lawyer.

Inman is a Republican from Williamsburg, near Traverse City.

Two years ago he started taking prescribed pain medication for an ankle injury.

Inman’s attorney Chris Cooke says since then he’s taken more and more pills after undergoing multiple surgeries. Now Inman’s seeking treatment for opioid use.

He faces up to 20 years in jail on charges of extortion, soliciting a bribe, and lying to the FBI.

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   Governor Gretchen Whitmer has signed an executive order to, in part, create a new Unemployment Insurance Appeals Commission. 

This comes after tens of thousands of Michigan residents were falsely accused of unemployment insurance fraud due to a computer error.

Whitmer says the old system was not efficient. It combined workers’ compensation and unemployment insurance appeals.

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