Stateside: Auto insurance changes begin; new rules to protect water; politics of deer baiting | Michigan Radio
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Stateside: Auto insurance changes begin; new rules to protect water; politics of deer baiting

Nov 15, 2019

Today on Stateside, new draft regulations for PFAS in drinking water take a step closer to becoming a reality. Plus, Detroit struggles to get landlords to comply with rules that protect renters.

Listen to the full show above or find individual segments below.

Despite drop in no-fault fee, attorney has “serious doubts” general public will see savings from auto insurance changes

  • This week the Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association (MCCA) announced next year’s fee for unlimited lifetime personal injury protection drops from $220 per year/per vehicle to $100 a year. That’s a 55% drop. The insurance industry immediately issued a news release claiming this is proof the changes in the law would save people money. Wayne Miller is with the law firm Miller & Tischler which specializes in cases involving catastrophic injury. He discussed the significance of the rate drop.  

State moves forward on draft rules to regulate PFAS in drinking water

  • The state of Michigan is a step closer to establishing the limits of PFAS in drinking water. PFAS is a family of chemicals that have been discovered in high levels in drinking water at sites across the state. Yesterday the Environmental Rules Review Committee voted to move the draft regulations forward. If approved, the new regulations will be among the strictest in the nation. The next step is a public comment period along with public hearings, which are expected to be announced before year's end. 
  • Anthony Spaniola is a metro-Detroit attorney who owns land on Van Etten Lake in Oscoda, which is one of the sites with high levels of PFAS contamination. He's also a member of the community group Need Our Water (NOW). 

How one program helps farmers reduce runoff, erosion, and other environmental harm

  • There's an environmental cost to farming. Whether it’s nitrogen pollution in Lake Erie, livestock waste polluting creeks, pesticides, or greenhouse gases released during plowing, some farmers recognize that a change in approach is necessary. Josh Appelby is with the Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program (MEAP). Mike Ludlam is a livestock farmer and a MAEAP technician. They help farmers find the most effective and cost-friendly methods to reduce their environmental impact.

Cheers! Beets. I hate beets, and you put it in my mixed drink?

  • Do you love beets? Hate them? No matter the answer, you’ll love the Knickerbeet-- Tammy Coxen’s newest cocktail creation. It uses Knickerbocker Gin, a beet, an egg, lemon, chili pepper bitters, pomegranate juice, and more. Listen to hear how Coxen makes her Kickerbeet cocktail.

Detroit struggles to get landlords to comply with rules that protect renters

  • More than half of the people in Detroit rent their homes. Back in 2017, the city set a two-year timeline to bring all rental properties into compliance with new rules designed to ensure that renters have a safe, viable place to live.  Sarah Alvarez is the director of Outlier Media. She wrote about the problems with the program for Curbed Detroit. 

Roundup: Debate over deer baiting, chronic wasting disease another example of politicizing science

  • Today is the first day of the firearm deer hunting season. The majority of legislators have opted to go against recommendations from state biologists. The biologists recommend banning deer baiting in order to prevent the spread of chronic wasting disease, which they argue poses a longterm threat to Michigan's deer population.
  • TJ Bucholz is president of Vanguard Public Affairs, a progressive political strategy firm. Ken Sikkema is senior policy fellow for Public Sector Consultants, and a former Republican Majority Leader of the Michigan Senate. They discuss the relationship between politics and science in Lansing.

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