Rick Pluta

MACKINAC ISLAND, MI (MPRN)--   Republicans and Democrats in Michigan’s Congressional delegation say they are working to put money into the federal budget to deal with two critical environmental issues. 

Both deal with water and the Great Lakes.

Michigan’s House members and two US Senators delivered their report on the porch of Mackinac Island’s Grand Hotel – with the sun-speckled Straits of Mackinac as a backdrop.

The congressional delegation said they have identified money to pay for PFAS cleanup, and to combat the spread of Asian carp and other invasive species.

MACKINAC ISLAND, MI (MPRN)--   Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel says she’s ready to go to court to force Enbridge to shut down a pipeline that moves oil and gas on a route that runs through the Great Lakes. That’s if the energy company and the state don’t reach a deal by the end of June.

Enbidge’s Line 5 runs through the Straits of Mackinac. The waterway connects Lake Michigan and Lake Huron and runs beneath the Mackinac Bridge.  The bridge is a landmark visible from Mackinac Island, and that’s where the attorney general made her plans known at a business conference.

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   A legal opinion from state Attorney General Dana Nessel throws into doubt the future of a law adopted last year. 

The law makes it harder for petition campaigns to put political questions directly to voters. It was adopted by Republicans in the Legislature before it was signed by then-Governor Rick Snyder.

The opinion from Nessel – a Democrat – says the law violates free speech rights and sets conditions on ballot campaigns that are not allowed by the state constitution.

engagedandready.com

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   The Michigan Court of Appeals says a commitment ceremony does not equal a marriage.

An ex-husband sued to end an expensive spousal support order after his ex-wife invited family and friends to a commitment ceremony with her new partner. He said that is effectively a marriage, and he should be allowed to stop making support payments.

The ex-husband won in a lower court. But the appeals court reversed the decision, and said a marriage in Michigan requires a ceremony, witnesses, and a certificate filed with a county clerk.

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   State Representative Larry Inman has been booted from closed-door planning sessions with fellow House Republicans. That’s following his indictment on charges of soliciting a bribe and lying to the FBI.

The indictment says Inman tried to squeeze a prospective donor for campaign contributions in exchange for his vote on a contentious labor issue. Republican House members disowned Inman in a closed-door meeting.

Republican Lee Chatfield is the also the House Speaker.

“He has lost the faith and trust of the Republican caucus,” he says.

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   Governor Gretchen Whitmer says the entire state of Michigan notched a win with Fiat-Chrysler’s decision to build the first new auto plant in Detroit in almost three decades.

A state board approved a generous incentive package for the project.

The deal hinged on a generous incentive package that was approved by the Michigan Strategic Fund. 

Governor Whitmer says the project shows Michigan is still a major player in the auto business.

“It is fitting the state that put the world on wheels, it is where we will build the cars of the future.”

michigan.gov

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   An international trade war could reduce how much money Michigan has to spend on roads, schools, and health care.

That’s the word from economists who testified Friday before a state budget panel.

The panel’s job is to determine how much revenue is available as the governor and the Legislature put together the state budget. The picture is stable at the moment as the economy hums and employment is high. 

But the panel has warned a trade war between the US and China could disrupt the economy.

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   The state Legislature’s GOP leaders say they will delay sending bills to Governor Gretchen Whitmer to change Michigan’s auto insurance system.

Whitmer says she’d veto the plans.

Republicans were poised to send the bills to Whitmer’s desk despite her vow to reject them, but GOP leaders say they’re still hopeful a deal can be reached that’s acceptable to all sides.

Whitmer says she’s willing to bargain with Republicans on a plan to reduce auto insurance premiums. But she says reducing coverage is not the answer.

Jan-Michael Stump / Traverse City Record-Eagle/AP

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   State Representative Larry Inman says he will not resign his seat as he faces federal charges of soliciting campaign contributions in exchange for votes by fellow lawmakers.

Inman is a Republican from Willamsburg just outside Traverse City.

He is accused of soliciting campaign donations in a failed effort to get money for Republicans who agreed to vote against repealing Michigan’s prevailing wage laws. Inman is also accused of lying to the FBI.

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   Republicans in the state Legislature have set the stage for a showdown with Governor Gretchen Whitmer over bills to outlaw an abortion procedure. 

Republican called votes in the House and the Senate on bills to ban the dilation-and-evacuation procedure.

Democrats, including state Representative Mari Manoogian, voted “no.”

“Decisions about women’s health care should be made by women and their physicians, not politicians.”

Pages