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In Michigan
5:45 pm
Fri September 11, 2009

AP Source: GM to restore salaried worker pay cuts

DETROIT, MI – A person familiar with the matter says General Motors Co. is telling employees in an e-mail that it will restore white-collar pay cuts made earlier this year, as of Sept. 1.

The person requested anonymity because no official announcement
has been made.

The company cut executive-level pay by 10 percent, manager pay by 7% and most other salaries by 5% in the spring as it struggled to avoid bankruptcy protection.

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In Michigan
5:48 am
Fri September 11, 2009

Granholm to meet again with legislative leaders

LANSING, MI – Governor Granholm is to meet again Friday with legislative leaders to talk about the budget. The deadline for completing the budget or risking a state government shutdown is three weeks away.

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Sports
5:39 am
Fri September 11, 2009

Royals beat Tigers 7-4 for 3-game sweep

KANSAS CITY, MO – Alex Gordon and Alberto Callaspo homered, leading the last-place Kansas City Royals past the Detroit Tigers 7-4 on Thursday for a surprising three-game sweep of the AL
Central leaders.

It was the first three-game sweep of an American League team at home this season for the Royals. They've won four straight overall for the first time since June 12-16.

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Sports
5:37 am
Fri September 11, 2009

Nolan leads Shock to verge of playoffs

AUBURN HILLS, MI – Deanna Nolan scored 34 points to lead Detroit to a 94-87 victory over the New York Liberty on Thursday night, helping the defending champion Shock clinch a playoff spot.

The Shock (17-16) continued their late-season surge, winning for the eight time in their last 10 games to move one-half game behind second place Atlanta in the Eastern Conference. Detroit, which began the season 9-14, secured a post-season berth when Chicago beat Indiana.

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In Michigan
6:45 pm
Thu September 10, 2009

1.3 million in Mich. lacked health coverage in '08

LANSING, MI – A new report says 1.3 million people in Michigan lacked health insurance last year.

The U.S. Census Bureau said Thursday 11.7% of state residents weren't covered through private companies or the government in 2008. That's up from 10.4% in 2007.

Things may be even worse now, because the figures don't include people who lost coverage as unemployment rose this year.

The Michigan League for Human Service says the report has good news and bad news for the state.

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In Michigan
6:42 pm
Thu September 10, 2009

MSU opens recycling center

EAST LANSING, MI – Michigan State University has officially opened its new surplus store and recycling center.

The 74,000 square foot facility can process three times more waste material than the university's center of Harrison Road. The new center features rainwater collection tanks, solar panels and motion sensors.

MSU trustee Melanie Foster says in addition to its main function, the center will become an important educational tool.

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In Michigan
6:35 pm
Thu September 10, 2009

MI House speaker says no round-the-clock sessions

LANSING, MI – House Speaker Andy Dillon doesn't expect a repeat of the round-the-clock sessions House members endured in September 2007 as they struggled to avoid a state shutdown.

Dillon said Thursday on a taping of public television's "Off the Record" program that House members will have to meet more often, but should be able to get budget bills passed by the Sept. 30 deadline.

He doesn't expect a repeat of the short government shutdown that took place in 2007, and sees no need for a continuation budget.

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In Michigan
6:30 pm
Thu September 10, 2009

Area homeless line up for identification cards

LANSING, MI – About 40 human service agencies spent Thursday dispensing free goods and services to the homeless at an annual event in Lansing. This year's gathering featured something new---identification cards for the homeless.

AUDIO:
Lines were long for the new ID cards that will verify eligibility when receiving public services. Mary Clark of Lansing is a longtime human services administrator who volunteered at the gathering:

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In Michigan
6:12 pm
Thu September 10, 2009

Ford, Granholm laud auto plant-turned energy complex

WIXOM, MI – A shut-down Ford plant in metro Detroit has found a new life as a sprawling manufacturing space for alternative energy companies. State officials say it's part of the new beginning for Michigan manufacturing.

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In Michigan
5:45 pm
Thu September 10, 2009

MI business group announces turnaround plan

LANSING, MI – A new organization calling itself Business Leaders for Michigan has announced a plan to fix Michigan's economy.

The group is made up of the Chief Operating Officers of big employers across the state. Organizers say the southeast Michigan group Detroit Renaissance is integrating with business leaders from other parts of the state.

Among the many proposals in their plan is a call for a reduction of the state work force by 5-10%, and cutting their pay to the average of state workers in other states.

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In Michigan
5:12 pm
Thu September 10, 2009

GM to let customers return cars for full refund

DETROIT, MI – General Motors Co. says it will allow new car buyers to return their vehicles within 2 months of purchasing them for a full refund if they're not satisfied.

The program is part of a sweeping, new marketing campaign, called "May the Best Car Win."

The automaker says it will help prove that its vehicles are competitive when it comes to quality and performance.

GM will allow customers who purchase a new vehicle between Sept. 14 and Nov. 30 to return it for a refund within 31 to 60 days from the date of purchase.

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Sports
12:52 pm
Thu September 10, 2009

Predictions of Earle episode 2

Sports Talk AM 870 host Earle Robinson

East Lansing, MI – WKAR sports talk AM 870 host Earle Robinson gives his fearless predictions as well as previewing the Michigan State Central Michigan matchup

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In Michigan
9:31 am
Thu September 10, 2009

Lansing, Ingham human services launch e-card system

LANSING, MI – City and county human service workers start a computerized system Thursday to improve services to the area's homeless population.

About 40 community organizations will offer assistance at "Project Homeless Connect" and for the first time some recipients will use an identification card with a bar code.

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In Michigan
7:15 am
Thu September 10, 2009

Detroit plans to lay off more than 100 bus drivers

DETROIT – Detroit's mayor says city bus service will continue Saturdays and Sundays, but some routes will be cut and 113 drivers will be laid off.

Dave Bing told City Council on Wednesday the changes will take effect effective Sept. 26 as the city faces a $300 million budget deficit. Route changes will be announced Thursday. He says cutting weekend service was never seriously considered.

Bing also told the council tentative agreements are in place with some municipal unions, but only one has ratified a contract.

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In Michigan
7:13 am
Thu September 10, 2009

Tentative deal reached in Oakland Univ. strike

ROCHESTER, MI – Facing a possible back-to-work order by a judge later in the day, striking professors will go back to the their classrooms at a suburban Detroit university, as a tentative three-year agreement was reached early Thursday morning.

A statement posted on Oakland University's Web site says terms of the deal won't be available until its ratified by the American Association of University Professors, but fall semester classes are expected to begin Thursday morning.

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Sports
5:42 am
Thu September 10, 2009

Lynx fight off late Shock rally to win 75-72

MINNEAPOLIS – Anna Montanana's putback with 28.6 seconds capped her career night and gave the playoff-hopeful Minnesota Lynx a 75-72 victory over the Detroit Shock on Wednesday night.

Reeling from the Shock's 13-0, fourth-quarter run, the Lynx bounced back and scored nine straight points to seal the victory.

Montanana, Renee Montgomery and Rashanda McCants all scored 12 points for the Lynx - Montanana's mark a career high.

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Sports
5:38 am
Thu September 10, 2009

Tejeda, Butler lead KC past Detroit 5-1

KANSAS CITY, MO – Robinson Tejeda tossed six shutout innings to outpitch Justin Verlander, Billy Butler hit three doubles and the Kansas City Royals beat the Detroit Tigers 5-1 on
Wednesday night for their first three-game winning streak since July.

Butler picked up his club-record fourth three-double game of the season and fifth consecutive multihit game. The first baseman's emergence has been one of the few bright spots in Kansas City's otherwise dismal season.

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In Michigan
5:43 pm
Wed September 9, 2009

GOP leader says prospects for shutdown growing

LANSING, MI – The state House Republican leader says the odds of a state government shutdown increase dramatically each week there's not a budget deal in Lansing. The deadline for wrapping up the budget is September 30.

Minority Leader Kevin Elsenheimer says the budget plan just made public by Governor Granholm this week represents progress. But he says Republicans still think it relies too heavily on tax hikes and stimulus funds that add to the federal deficit.

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In Michigan
5:13 pm
Wed September 9, 2009

More talks ordered in Oakland Univ. profs strike

ROCHESTER, MI – A judge has ordered around-the-clock negotiations between Oakland University and a union as part of an effort to resolve a nearly weeklong strike by the school's
professors.

Oakland County Circuit Judge Edward Sosnick on Wednesday said that if an agreement can't be reached by 10 a.m. Thursday he'll hold a hearing on the school's request for a back-to-work order for professors.

The strike has delayed the start of classes for 18,000 students.

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In Michigan
4:41 pm
Wed September 9, 2009

PSC sees no increase in state electricity demand

LANSING, MI – A report by a state agency says there will be no new demand for electricity in Michigan until 2022.

The Michigan Public Service Commission says proposed new coal plants by Consumers Energy and Wolverine Power are unnecessary and unjustified.

But their report also says Consumer's plant near Bay City might be needed if the utility first closes one of its old coal-fired plants.

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In Michigan
4:40 pm
Wed September 9, 2009

Tempers cool in MI budget battle

LANSING, MI – State House Speaker Andy Dillon tried to turn down the heat today on his feud with Governor Granholm, and said Democrats are still on the same side in the budget debate in Lansing. Granholm and Dillon engaged in a round of name-calling Tuesday over progress on the state budget.

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In Michigan
4:12 pm
Wed September 9, 2009

Democrats bicker over revenue to balance the budget

LANSING, MI – Governor Granholm floated a plan Tuesday that would use spending cuts and new taxes on vending machine sales, bottled water, and live entertainment to balance the budget. The plan was quickly torpedoed by the Democratic leader of the state House.

AUDIO:

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WKAR Features
9:42 am
Wed September 9, 2009

Lansing Symphony starts off season with "Espana" concert

EAST LANSING, MI – The Lansing Symphony Orchestra begins its new season of concerts Saturday night at Wharton Center. Conductor Timothy Muffitt came to the WKAR studios recently to talk about the music on the program. The concert starts with a French take on the music of Spain--"Espana" by Emmanuel Chabrier.

AUDIO:

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In Michigan
6:56 am
Wed September 9, 2009

PSC says new coal plants not needed in Michigan

LANSING, MI – The state Public Service Commission has released a report that says Michigan does not need new coal-burning power plants to meet its energy needs. The report is a setback for Consumers Energy, which is seeking permission to build a large capacity power plant near Bay City that has fewer emissions than a traditional coal plant.

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In Michigan
6:56 am
Wed September 9, 2009

State offers anti-radiation tablets to people near nuke plants

LANSING, MI – Michigan is stockpiling a supply of anti-radiation tablets to help protect people within 10 miles of a nuclear plant in the event of an accident. People can get a one-day supply from a local pharmacy now that Michigan's joined a federal program to get the potassium iodide pills. They help protect from radiation damage to the thyroid gland.

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Sports
6:27 am
Wed September 9, 2009

KC pulls out 7-5 win to stop Detroit's streak

KANSAS CITY, MO – Billy Butler drove in two runs, Kansas City's bullpen pitched 4 1-3 scoreless innings and the Royals ended the Detroit Tigers' six-game winning streak with a 7-5 victory Tuesday night.

The Royals had 11 hits and a rare strong performance from their bullpen to win
consecutive games for the first time since July 27-28 against Baltimore.

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In Michigan
6:03 am
Wed September 9, 2009

Cox releases blueprint for fixing Michigan

LANSING, MI – Attorney General Mike Cox says he would cut the state's primary business tax in half in his first year if elected governor. That would cost the state $2 billion in lost revenue. And Cox says he would eventually phase out the Michigan Business Tax altogether. He says he'd also ask the Legislature to reduce the state income tax.

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In Michigan
6:57 pm
Tue September 8, 2009

Mich. coal plant proposals get negative reviews

LANSING, MI – The Michigan Public Service Commission is giving negative reviews to proposals for two coal-fired power plants.

Commission staffers said Tuesday that Wolverine Power Cooperative has failed to show a need for the plant it wants to build in Rogers City.

In a separate report, the staffers also say Consumers Energy hasn't made the case for a new coal plant near Bay City unless some of the company's existing power generation is taken offline.

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In Michigan
6:53 pm
Tue September 8, 2009

Oakland U. asks judge to order profs back to work

ROCHESTER, MI – Oakland University has asked a judge to order striking professors back to work as classes remain canceled at the suburban Detroit university.

A hearing is scheduled for 10 a.m. EDT Wednesday before Oakland County Circuit Judge Edward Sosnick on the university's complaint that the strike is illegal.

The campus chapter of the American Association of University Professors authorized a walkout Sept. 2 after the university proposed a three-year wage freeze along with cuts in health-insurance benefits.

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In Michigan
6:46 pm
Tue September 8, 2009

Business groups call for reforms

LANSING, MI – Business groups met in Lansing Tuesday to call for structural reforms from the Legislature and Governor Granholm. They say their list of 20 reforms would help eliminate future embarrassment from state budget failures.

Jim Holcombe is with the Michigan Chamber of Commerce.

"We simply cannot keep going down the path we've set ourselves upon where each year we path together a budget, we cobble something together, and put off the tough choices for another two years," he said.

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