Lessenberry talks Asian carp, the polar vortex and new Detroit leadership | Michigan Radio

Lessenberry talks Asian carp, the polar vortex and new Detroit leadership

Jan 8, 2014

This Week in Michigan Politics, Jack Lessenberry and Christina Shockley talk about a plan to keep Asian carp out of the Great Lakes, the polar vortex and what the new leadership on Detroit City Council will mean for the city.

What will keep Asian Carp out of the Great Lakes

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers released a major report this week about what to do to keep the invasive Asian carp from getting into the Great Lakes.

The report offers 8 plans for preventing Asian carp and other species from getting into the Lakes.

Lessenberry says the biggest solution to the problem is the physical separation of the Great Lakes from the Mississippi river. The problem is the fact that the separation would happen in the Chicago area.

“Part of the problem is the president. President Obama is from Chicago. Separating the Chicago River from the Great Lakes would be economically devastating to the Chicago area.”

How local and state leaders responded to the polar vortex

Michigan was hit with a lot of snow and brutally cold wind chills this week.  Some schools are closed for a third day today.  

Lessenberry says local and state leaders responded faster and were more visible during the polar vortex, compared to when they were seemingly non-responsive when the holiday ice storm knocked out power to more than a half million utility customers in the state.

The new Detroit City Council means more opposition for the mayor and emergency manager

This week the Detroit City Council chose Brenda Jones as council president.

This is her third term on council. She was against both an emergency manager and a consent agreement with the state and she didn’t want the state to step in to help Belle Isle park.

Lessenberry says this is a setback for getting Detroit back in the control of the local government.

“This doesn’t do anything to make Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr want to hurry up and turn more power over to the city council and the mayor,” Lessenberry says.

Lessenberry says the real test is what will happen once Emergency Manager Orr leaves, which is likely to happen in October.

“Mayor Duggan is going to have to submit budgets to this council. He may have just as many difficulties as Bing did if this vote was any indication.”