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Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

A coalition of education, business and other groups is calling for more investment in college and career training in Michigan.

Tuesday, the Michigan Higher Education Attainment Roundtable released the report Total Talent: Equipping All Michiganders with the Education and Skills Needed for Success in the Economy of Today and Tomorrow.

The report says Michigan needs to greatly expand the percentage of the state’s workforce with college degrees and technical certification by 2025.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

State health officials are urging Michiganders to be tested for several sexually transmitted diseases.

Until recently, Michigan has seen a slow decline in chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis cases. But a new report shows cases of all three STDs spiked last year. Chlamydia cases are up 8%. Gonorrhea jumped 20%.  Syphilis rose 28%.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services says a majority of the increases occurred among adolescents, African-American men and women, and men who have sex with other men.

Obama White House

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency held its second of three public listening sessions Tuesday, this one in Dearborn, on its proposal to freeze increases in fuel economy standards after 2020.

But even automakers that don't support the current standards say a freeze is going too far, as David Shepardson of Reuters reports.

milist.org

It just got harder for the Democrats to win control of the state House in November.

That's because Jennifer Suidan, the Democratic candidate for state representative in a key Oakland County district, has been accused of stealing funds from the campaign of Oakland County Treasurer Andy Meisner while she was working at a Southfield-based law firm as his campaign committee's designated record keeper. 

ford field
meesh / Flickr - http://bit.ly/1rFrzRK

Today on Stateside, a Michigan official responds to the controversy surrounding Wisconsin’s quiet approval of a 2010 request to divert nearly 11 million gallons of Great Lakes water per day. Plus, a comic book that explores the repatriation of Native American remains and the relationship between indigenous tribes and museums.

Wixom, MI

A company in Wixom has set a new record for PFAS, and it's not the kind of record to be proud of. 

A state test found 5,500 parts per trillion of PFAS in Norton Creek in Oakland County -- more than 450 times what's allowed in surface water. 

The chemicals have been traced to Tribar Manufacturing, which makes chrome-plated car parts. 

Laura Rubin is head of the Huron River Watershed Council. She says PFAS chemicals are ubiquitous in Michigan.

U.S. Department of Justice

Michigan Senator Debbie Stabenow says it’s time for Congress to step up to protect the Mueller investigation.

The White House says President Donald Trump and his embattled Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein spoke on Monday and will meet Thursday at the White House amid uncertainty about Rosenstein's fate.

Looking up into the rotunda of the Michigan Capitol.
user cedarbenddrive/Flickr / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

The state Legislature returns this week. But lawmakers will likely save big issues for after the election. 

“I wish I could tell ya that we were gonna solve road funding, tackle other big issues over the next few weeks,” said Senator Curtis Hertel, D-East Lansing. “I’ve seen no indication of that whatsoever, and I think a lot of stuff is going to hold off until lame duck.”

House and Senate spokespeople have confirmed that there won’t be much going on in their chambers this week. But there are some committees scheduled to tackle major issues.

Daniel Howes / Detroit News

Detroit lost a giant this week: the diminutive David DiChiera died at 83. He founded Michigan Opera Theatre just a few short years after the ’67 riots, prompting friends to question his sanity.

He envisioned transforming a decrepit Roaring Twenties movie theater into a European-style opera house long before Comerica Park or Ford Field became reality near Madison Avenue.

pile of one dollar bills
Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

The state Department of Treasury says almost 250 communities in Michigan had underfunded pension or healthcare systems last year.

That’s about 28% of all communities in Michigan. Combined, their total liabilities tally up to almost 19 billion dollars.

Rod Taylor is with the Treasury Department. He says it’s a problem for those local governments and Michigan as a whole, as it could affect credit ratings and the state’s overall economic vitality.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

In Flint Monday, a judge will hear arguments over dismissing a lawsuit concerning police car chases.

In 2014, a state police trooper tried to conduct a traffic stop on a vehicle in Flint, which sped away. A high speed chase ensued. It ended when the fleeing vehicle caused a chain reaction crash that left one person dead and another permanently injured.

Prison bars
flickr user Thomas Hawk / http://bit.ly/1xMszCg

A former Michigan corrections officer has sued the Michigan Department of Corrections (MDOC), alleging the agency discriminated against her based on sexual orientation and race.

The Livingston Daily Press & Argus reports that Ashley Menchaca, who is Hispanic and gay, worked at the Woodland Center Facility in Whitmore Lake from January 2016 until she resigned May 2017.

The Brits have a way of talking about whining that we might want to import. The word is “whinge,” and a listener named Addeane recently asked us about it:

“Both ['whinge' and 'whine'] seem to mean to complain peevishly. But ‘whinge’ doesn’t seem to be used in the United States. I’ve seen it written in British sources but never heard it spoken. Can you help sort this out?”

A brick church
User VanZandt / Flickr- http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

The Michigan Attorney General’s office is investigating the state’s Catholic priests. A response to a Freedom of Information Act request says the AG’s office has been looking into alleged sexual abuse and assault of children from 1950 to present. It also says the office started the investigation in August.

This comes after an investigation in Pennsylvania revealed hundreds of priests had sexually abused children.

Michael Diebold is with the Diocese of Lansing.

album cover of space odyssey soundtrack
User Per-Olof Forsberg / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Today on Stateside, why a large diversion of Lake Michigan water approved by the state of Wisconsin in 2010 is drawing new scrutiny. Plus, ringing in the first weekend of fall with a Michigan version of a tropical cocktail.  

satellite map of Michigan, the Great Lakes
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

When Peter Annin, director of the Burke Center for Freshwater Innovation at Northland College, was completing research for an updated version of his book The Great Lakes Water Wars, he discovered a detail about Great Lakes water diversions that had gone unnoticed for 8 years.

According to his findings, the state of Wisconsin never announced that in 2010, it approved the village of Pleasant Prairie's request to extract seven million gallons of water per day from Lake Michigan, the largest water diversion in the state.

Michigan Medicaid to expand access to new hepatitis drugs

Sep 21, 2018
Looking down on a hand holding an open bottle of prescription drugs.
Sharyn Morrow / flickr http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Starting October 1, Michigan Medicaid will expand coverage for a new class of hepatitis C drugs. A twelve week course of treatment with the new direct-acting antiviral drugs clears the virus completely in most patients.

Michigan's Medicaid system limits access to the drugs to those who have later stage liver scarring. Liver scarring is staged from F0 to F4. Currently, only patients with scarring from F2 to F4 were eligible for the drugs. Beginning on October 1, patients with milder F1 liver scarring will also be able to receive treatment.

Westland police accused in second tasing incident

Sep 21, 2018
Catherine Shaffer

Another complaint has been made against the Westland Police Department for excessive use of force involving a taser. Westland Police are already investigating the use of a taser on a man holding an infant. Now another man, Jerry Shingles, says he was tased when police came to his house at 2:30 in the morning looking for his father, Jerry Dickinson.

Mark Brush / Michigan Radio

Governor Rick Snyder's office may ask the National Guard to finish roadwork that's been halted since the Michigan Infrastructure and Transportation Association locked out members of the operating engineers union in early September.

Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

Michigan Radio’s Stateside colleagues April Van Buren and Mercedes Mejia challenged the Cheers! team to make a pina colada using paw paw.

The Cheers! drink expert, Tammy Coxen of Tammy’s Tastings, loved the idea.

Michigan Truth Squad: Republicans attack Dana Nessel for firm’s defense on sex crimes

Sep 21, 2018
“Dangerous Dana Nessel” shares a 30-second ad with Larry Nassar, Bill Cosby and Harvey Weinstein. No, there’s no connection between Nessel and the three infamous sex abusers.
Bridge Magazine

Michigan Democratic attorney general candidate Dana Nessel is blasted for having worked at a law firm that defended accused sex offenders in a television ad paid for by the Michigan Republican Party.

Misleading images and a blatant disregard for the role of defense attorneys earn the ad a rating of foul. The ad is on stronger ground attacking the crass-marketing tactics used by Nessel’s former firm to win the business of accused child rapists.

John Auchter / Michigan Radio

Earlier this week, the Washington Post had an article, "American paradox: Voters want the anger to stop but can’t stop being angry." It really could have been about anyplace in the United States, but the dateline was from Rochester, Michigan and centered on Elissa Slotkin's campaign against incumbent Mike Bishop for Michigan's 8th Congressional District.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

As Michigan voters consider whether to legalize recreational marijuana, law enforcement agencies are assessing how to respond if the measure passes in November.

fracking well
Tim Evanson / Wikimedia Commons / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Today on Stateside, Democratic Congressman Dan Kildee discusses what he is doing to prevent the deportation of a 48-year-old man from Nigeria who is deaf and has cognitive disabilities. Plus, University of Michigan Professor Daniel Raimi breaks down the risks, myths, and benefits of fracking.

Former Congressman Joe Schwarz.
U.S. House of Representatives / Wikipedia

Former top-level state officials with the Snyder, Engler, and Milliken administrations are among a group of Republicans and independents publicly endorsing Democrat Gretchen Whitmer for governor.

The group is co-chaired by former Republican Congressman Joe Schwarz, who now identifies as an independent.

“The party itself has maybe gone a bit too far to the right,” says Schwarz. “And we really need someone in the center, someone who’s a moderate, someone who has the ability to work with both sides, but someone who can make tough decisions.”

natasha henderson
Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

A former city administrator in Flint who says she was fired for exposing suspicious activity by the mayor is getting another day in court.

Activists object to Line 5 tunnel proposal

Sep 20, 2018
One of the anchors used to hold Line 5 in place under the Straits of Mackinac.
Screen shot of a Ballard Marine inspection video / Enbridge Energy

Environmental advocates are speaking out against a proposed agreement to build a tunnel over Enbridge Energy's Line 5, which runs under the straits of Mackinac. An anchor strike earlier this year highlighted concerns that a leak in that stretch of the pipeline could be a major environmental disaster.

Lara Moehlman / Michigan Radio

Drinking water has been shut off in Detroit's public schools after voluntary tests found elevated lead and copper levels in 57 of 86 schools tested.

Officials believe these elevated levels are due to aging pipes and fixtures.

But, as Michigan Radio's Lindsey Smith has learned, this isn't completely unexpected for any city as old as Detroit:

drinking fountain
Flickr

Students across Michigan are heading back to school this month, and in some cities, students won’t be getting their water out of drinking fountains.

In August, Detroit Public Schools Community District announced that all drinking water in the district would be shut off indefinitely after elevated lead and copper levels were discovered. As of September 19, results found elevated levels in water fixtures at 57 of 86 schools tested so far. And in Flint, the public schools plan to continue using water bottles until January.

U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow in Studio East at Michigan Radio.
Cameron Stewart / Michigan Radio

U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-Michigan) says she agrees that the FBI should investigate a sexual assault allegation against Judge Brett Kavanaugh.  

Kavanaugh is a U.S. Supreme Court nominee.

California university professor Christine Blasey Ford says Kavanaugh tried to rape her when he was 17 and she was 15. Her attorneys say she is willing to speak with the Senate Judiciary Committee, but not prior to an FBI investigation.   

Stabenow says there's good reason for that approach.

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