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In Michigan
5:11 pm
Tue July 28, 2009

House panel approves "sunshine law" on tax breaks

LANSING, MI – A state House committee has voted to require Michigan's economic development agency to provide more information on how it uses job-creation tax credits. It's a step toward authorizing more of the tax breaks.

The Michigan Economic Growth Authority has almost reached its limit for the year, and wants the Legislature to approve a new round of credits. But a key Republican lawmaker says she wants more proof the program is working.

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Top Stories
4:44 pm
Tue July 28, 2009

LPD gets stimulus grant

EAST LANSING, MI – The Lansing Police Department is getting a grant of more than $867,000 from the federal stimulus plan.

AUDIO:
In all, a billion dollars in grants to police departments across the country were announced by Vice President Joe Biden and Attorney General Eric Holder. Michigan agencies get $34-million to hire and rehire 160 officers. Lansing's grant will pay for four officers.

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Sports
9:27 am
Tue July 28, 2009

AP Source: GM to end sponsorship of Buick Open

DETROIT – DETROIT (AP) - A person briefed on the decision says this week's Buick Open golf tournament will be the last because General Motors Co. will end its sponsorship after more than a half-century.

The person said GM and tour officials will announce after the tournament that GM is pulling out. The person did not want to be identified because the announcement has not been made.

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WKAR Features
8:42 am
Tue July 28, 2009

Michigan Army National Guard trains with GPS

The Michigan Army National Guard is learning to use a GPS device that tracks troop movements in combat.
Kevin Lavery, WKAR News

Camp Grayling, MI – U.S. troops in Iraq and Afghanistan train for a range of tasks. They hunt for suspected terrorists and hidden weapons, evacuate the wounded and provide security during elections.

This week, soldiers with the Michigan Army National Guard are playing war games at Camp Grayling. They're testing out a GPS system that records everything that happens on the battlefield. WKAR's Kevin Lavery reports on how troops are using digital clarity to penetrate the fog of war.

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Sports
5:42 am
Tue July 28, 2009

Obama says WNBA inspires his daughters

WASHINGTON – President Barack Obama says the WNBA serves as an inspiration for his two young daughters.

Obama on Monday said his daughters, Sasha and Malia, have never known a time when women did not play professional basketball in the United States. He says his girls watch the female players on television.

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Sports
5:40 am
Tue July 28, 2009

Ohio State picked tops in Big 10 pre-season poll

CHICAGO – Ohio State is the media's pre-season favorite to win the Big Ten title.

The Buckeyes boast 12 returning starters from last year's Fiesta Bowl team, which went 10-3 and tied Penn State at 7-1 in conference play. That includes pre-season Offensive Player of the Year Terrelle Pryor, who won eight of nine games as a starter. He was Ohio State's first true freshman to start at quarterback since
1978.

The Buckeyes have won or shared four straight conference titles.

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Sports
5:37 am
Tue July 28, 2009

Hunter, Cruz lift Rangers over Tigers

ARLINGTON, TX – Rookie Tommy Hunter pitched a career-high seven innings, Nelson Cruz and Michael Young homered, and the Texas Rangers finally beat the AL Central-leading Detroit
Tigers 5-2 on Monday night.

The Rangers had lost the first six meetings with the Tigers this season to drop to 3-14 against them over the last three years before Hunter (3-1) pitched Texas to its seventh victory in eight games.

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Sports
5:33 am
Tue July 28, 2009

Lugnuts swamp Snappers

BELOIT, WI – The Lansing Lugnuts pounded out 16 hits while limiting the Beloit Snappers to just four hits, completing a three-game sweep with a 10-1 victory yesterday afternoon at Pohlman Field. The Lugnuts open up a six-game homestand today with the opener of a three-game series against Clinton at 7:05 p. m. at Oldsmobile Park.

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In Michigan
6:37 pm
Mon July 27, 2009

School groups to announce support for Dillon plan

EAST LANSING, MI – A number of educational organizations in Michigan will announce their support Tuesday for a controversial proposal to change health insurance for the state's public employees.

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In Michigan
6:20 pm
Mon July 27, 2009

Two blueberry diseases ID'd in Michigan for 1st time

EAST LANSING, MI – State officials say two exotic diseases that attack blueberry plants have been identified in Michigan for the first time.

Michigan Department of Agriculture Director Don Koivisto said Monday in a statement that blueberry shock and blueberry scorch could cause "significant losses" to producers but are not threats to food safety or human health.

Blueberry shock was identified at a Michigan State University research station in Fennville and blueberry scorch virus was discovered at a west Michigan farm.

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In Michigan
6:16 pm
Mon July 27, 2009

Buick Open week begins in Grand Blanc

ANN ARBOR, MI – Practice rounds are underway in Grand Blanc for the Buick Open.

This is the 45th year for the professional golfing tournament near Flint, and it may be the last. Tournament and PGA officials won't comment on reports GM is dropping its longtime sponsorship of the event.

Jerry Preston is the president of the Flint Area Convention and Visitors Bureau. He says it's too soon to start planning for a tournament without GM.

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In Michigan
5:46 pm
Mon July 27, 2009

State House Democrats unveil energy efficiency legislation

LANSING, MI – State House Democrats say Michigan needs tougher energy standards to attract renewable energy businesses to the state. The lawmakers have unveiled legislation that would require 30% of the state's energy come from renewable sources by 2025.

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Top Stories
5:13 pm
Mon July 27, 2009

Granholm signs regional letter re: eight-state high-speed rail

LANSING, MI – Governor Granholm has signed an agreement with seven other governors to work together to build a high-speed rail line. The train would travel from Detroit and Pontiac to Chicago and other Midwestern cities.

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In Michigan
4:42 pm
Mon July 27, 2009

Bernero gets endorsed by MEA PAC and Lansing Education Association

EAST LANSING, MI – Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero has picked up another pair of critical endorsements for his reelection bid. The Lansing School's Education Association and a local Political Action Committee of the Michigan Education Association made the endorsements today. Marc Thomas is with the MEA's Capital Area PAC:

"His work in promoting safety in the schools is just one example of something directly he can do, but he can also really set the tone for a
strong educational environment in the city of Lansing," he said.

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In Michigan
11:33 am
Mon July 27, 2009

Midwest governors talk high-speed rail

CHICAGO – Several Midwest governors are meeting in Chicago to talk high-speed trains.

Eight Midwest states have cooperated closely for months to promote a regional high-speed rail network with Chicago as its hub.

Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn and other governors attending what's billed as a Midwest High Speed Rail Summit are expected to lobby again Monday for a cut of $8 billion in federal stimulus cash for such projects.

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In Michigan
10:59 am
Mon July 27, 2009

Detroit Metro Airport has plan to save its shops

ROMULUS, MI – A memo obtained by the Detroit Free Press shows the operator of Detroit Metropolitan Airport warns many of the 120 businesses in the facility's terminals could close if they don't receive some assistance.

The newspaper reports Monday the Wayne County Airport Authority has developed a hardship plan that would defer payment of a portion of the fees the airport charges businesses.

Retail sales at the McNamara Terminal from October 2008 through January of this year were down 17 percent to 40 percent from the year-ago period.

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Sports
10:55 am
Mon July 27, 2009

Woods paired with Seger for pre-Buick Open pro-am

GRAND BLANC, MI – Tiger Woods will play a round with rock legend Bob Seger at a pro-am event ahead of this week's Buick Open near Flint.

Seger and Woods will tee off at 7 a.m. Wednesday in Grand Blanc. The Buick Open runs Thursday through Sunday at Warwick Hills.

The high-profile pairing was announced Monday.

Others scheduled to take part in the Pure Michigan Pro-Am include Detroit Lions coach Jim Schwartz and Detroit Pistons coach John Kuester.

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WKAR Features
9:53 am
Mon July 27, 2009

Fight over tax breaks focused on disclosure

LANSING, MI – Governor Granholm's administration will resume lobbying this week for expanding the number of tax credits the state uses to attract employers. The Michigan Economic Growth Authority awards the credits based on the recommendation of the state's business development agency. But this month, the authority almost reached the limit of what it can offer. And the governor says that threatens to stall her efforts to bring more skilled jobs to a state that badly needs them.

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In Michigan
7:17 am
Mon July 27, 2009

State Legislature extends recess

LANSING, MI – State House Democrats plan to unveil legislation this week to offer incentives for renewable energy businesses. But no one will be in Lansing to vote on it.

The Legislature's informal summer break continues to drag on as closed-door budget meetings between Governor Granholm and legislative leaders continue. Those confidential discussions don't leave much room for other legislative business.

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In Michigan
6:54 am
Mon July 27, 2009

Community colleges lobby to offer 4-year degrees

LIVONIA, MI – Michigan community colleges are challenging four-year universities for the right to offer bachelor's degrees.

If they succeed, the state would join 14 others that already allow such degrees.

The move is being opposed by Michigan's 15 public universities, which says it's a clear case of the colleges overstepping their missions.

Livonia Republican state Representative John Walsh is the bill's author, and he has backing from a bipartisan group of colleagues.

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In Michigan
6:51 am
Mon July 27, 2009

USDA: Michigan's peach forecast is looking good

TRAVERSE CITY, MI – Agriculture officials say Michigan's peach crop is looking good for this year after frost took a big bite out of last year's harvest.

The Traverse City Record-Eagle says projections released last week by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Michigan Field Office call for an estimated at 20,000 tons of peaches to be harvested this summer from Michigan's orchards.

That's up 43 percent from last year, when spring frost lowered the summertime peach harvest.

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Arts & Culture
6:23 am
Mon July 27, 2009

Shakespeare's Globe to tour United States starting in Ann Arbor

LONDON – Shakespeare's Globe, the London theater that stages the Bard's plays in an Elizabethan setting, is taking its show on the road in the U.S.

The company says it will perform the comedy "Love's Labour's Lost" in eight American university cities starting in October.

The Globe is a recreation of the open-air theater where many of Shakespeare's plays were first performed. Many patrons stand in the open air as "groundlings" like their Elizabethan predecessors,and actors are encouraged to interact with the audience.

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Sports
6:17 am
Mon July 27, 2009

White Sox beat Tigers 5-1 avoiding 4-game sweep

DETROIT, MI (AP) – Paul Konerko hit a two-run homer in Chicago's four-run first, Gordon Beckham added a solo home run the next inning and the White Sox coasted to a 5-1 win Sunday night over the Detroit Tigers and avoided a sweep.

Clayton Richard (4-3) allowed only a run on five hits over eight innings to help the White Sox salvage a four-game series that started with them tied atop the AL Central with Detroit. The Tigers lead Chicago by two games and the Minnesota Twins by four.

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Sports
5:44 am
Mon July 27, 2009

SPARTAN LINEBACKER JONES PRESEASON DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR

East Lansing, MI – Michigan State Junior Linebacker Greg Jones has been named BIG TEN Preseason Defensive Player of the Year by the media during the annual BIG TEN meetings.

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In Michigan
5:38 am
Mon July 27, 2009

M-DOT starts repairs on Trowbridge/US 127 ramps

LANSING, MI – The state Department of Transportation starts road repairs today at the interchange of US-127 and Trowbridge Road.

Beginning today, M-DOT will repair concrete on the ramp from Trowbridge Road to northbound US-127. The ramp will be open to traffic for the first half of the week -but will be closed from Thursday until Saturday, August 1st.

While the ramp is closed, M-DOT will post directions for a detour using the interchange at I-496 and Pennsylvania Avenue to get back to northbound 127.

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Sports
5:32 am
Sun July 26, 2009

Lugnuts defeat Snappers

BELOIT, WI – The Lansing Lugnuts defeated the Beloit Snappers 3-1, on Sunday afternoon at Pohlman Field. Lansing clinched only their second series victory of the second half with the win, setting up the opportunity for a second sweep of the season. The Lugnuts' only series sweep of 2009 occurred in May at Wisconsin. The Lugnuts go for the sweep on Monday at 1:00 p.m.

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In Michigan
5:24 pm
Fri July 24, 2009

Michigan reps discuss road funding woes with feds

LANSING, MI – Members of Michigan's congressional delegation have met with U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood to discuss road funding options.

Michigan risks losing federal matching money for road construction starting in 2011 because the state may not have enough cash of its own to spend on the projects. That puts more than 130 projects worth more than $700 million in jeopardy from 2011 through 2013.

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In Michigan
5:13 pm
Fri July 24, 2009

Lawyer: Mich. man with 100+ dogs had mental issues

DEARBORN, MI – A family spokesman says a 56-year-old man found living in a Detroit-area house with more than 110 live dogs, mostly Chihuahuas, and about 150 dead dogs had severe mental issues.

Lawyer James G. Schmier says Kenneth Lang Jr. had no health insurance and had a mental impairment that stemmed from rubella as a child. He says Lang lived alone in the Dearborn home for years after his parents retired to Florida.

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Top Stories
4:41 pm
Fri July 24, 2009

Granholm calls for Senate action on MEGA credits

EAST LANSING, MI – Governor Granholm uses her weekly radio address to call on the state Senate to boost the number of tax credits her administration can use to attract businesses and jobs.

AUDIO:
The governor says business recruitment efforts could stall without more Michigan Economic Growth Authority -- or MEGA -- tax credits. The MEGA board has nearly reached its limit, and won't be able to award new business tax credits until next year.

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In Michigan
2:47 pm
Fri July 24, 2009

Attendance and donations up at Ag Expo

WKAR Photo

EAST LANSING, MI – Trucks spent Friday noisily removing implements and exhibits from the site of the MSU Ag Expo. The annual 3-day agriculture event wrapped Thursday in East Lansing.

Organizers say good weather helped boost attendance by 20% over last year. Laura Probyn is a spokesperson for the event.

"Also, our donations for scholarships to the MSU College of Agriculture and Natural Resources were significantly increased this year as well. We were up almost $1,000 over 2008," she said.

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