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5:49 am
Fri July 24, 2009

Tiger to play in Buick Open

GRAND BLANC, MI – Tiger Woods has decided to play in the Buick Open as he prepares for the final major of the year.

Woods announced Thursday that he would return to the Buick Open, which he has won twice. His long-time endorsement deal with Buick ended early last year, and there were questions whether Woods would play.

Woods did not play the Buick Invitational at Torrey Pines earlier this year because he had not returned from knee surgery.

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Sports
5:40 am
Fri July 24, 2009

Lugnuts lose to Peoria

PEORIA, IL – The Peoria Chiefs blanked the Lansing Lugnuts 5-0 last night at O'Brien Field. Having split the first two games of the series, the Lugnuts and Chiefs play the rubber match in their three-game series on Friday at 7:30 p.m.

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Top Stories
5:32 am
Fri July 24, 2009

Mich. state government has 3rd unpaid furlough day

LANSING, MI – It's the third of the state's six scheduled unpaid furlough days for most employees. State government will run much like it does on a public holiday.

Among those services that should continue without interruption are Michigan State Police road patrols, prisons, state psychiatric hospitals and emergency human services programs. Unemployment office call centers and problem resolution offices will be open.

Secretary of State and general state offices will be closed.

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In Michigan
6:11 pm
Thu July 23, 2009

Unemployment rates rose across Michigan in June

LANSING, MI – Unemployment rates rose in all 17 of Michigan's major labor markets in June.

The loss of manufacturing jobs and of seasonal employment in education drove up the unemployment rates announced by the state Thursday. Michigan gained seasonal tourism jobs.

All of Michigan's regional markets had unemployment rates of more than 10% last month, ranging from a low of 10.6% in Ann Arbor to a high of 17.4% in Flint.

Two rural counties, Baraga and Oscoda, each had jobless rates of
more than 20%.

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Top Stories
5:12 pm
Thu July 23, 2009

Granholm, lawmakers continue Michigan budget talks

LANSING, MI – LANSING, Mich. (AP) - Gov. Jennifer Granholm appears to be leaving several options open for resolving Michigan's state budget problems.

Granholm told reporters shortly after meetings with legislative leaders Thursday that trimming the size of various tax exemptions or "loopholes" could be included in a budget-balancing plan. She said reducing a surcharge on the Michigan Business Tax could be considered as part of a deal.

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In Michigan
4:40 pm
Thu July 23, 2009

State Senator calls for more oversight in tax credits

LANSING, MI – A state senator says the Michigan Economic Development Corporation gives out too many tax credits to businesses without enough oversight.

State Senator Nancy Cassis says the MEDC gave out a year's worth of tax credits in six months. Cassis says she wants more details on how successful the businesses that get the tax credits are at creating jobs.

Cassis says small businesses already in the state don't see the same benefits as some companies that get tax credits to come to Michigan.

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In Michigan
4:17 pm
Thu July 23, 2009

MSU/UM students lobby to keep Michigan Promise Scholarships

Lansing, MI – Student government leaders from Michigan State University and the University of Michigan stood together Thursday at the state Capitol. They vowed to fight to save the Michigan Promise Scholarship program.

The students say they will spend the rest of the summer lobbying the state legislature. They're concerned about proposed budget cuts that could wipe out Michigan Promise Scholarships and reduce funding for colleges and universities.

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In Michigan
3:46 pm
Thu July 23, 2009

Governor says Promise scholarship may have to be cut

LANSING, MI – Governor Granholm met Thursday with legislative leaders to try and resolve disagreements over the next state budget. The governor says one of her priorities is making sure the Michigan Promise college scholarship is not eliminated. It goes to all students who complete two years of college or job training after high school.

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Sports
10:14 am
Thu July 23, 2009

Ex-Red Wing Fedorov: Mich. man swiped $43M

DETROIT – Former Detroit Red Wing Sergei Fedorov says during the past 11 years he has been swindled out of $43 million by a Grosse Pointe Shores man entrusted to manage his money.

In a lawsuit obtained by the Detroit Free Press prior to an expected filing this morning in Wayne County Circuit Court, Fedorov accuses Joseph Zada of embezzlement and reneging on a promise to repay him.

The lawsuit says Zada, "acting in concert with others, intentionally lied to Fedorov" whenever he asked about the money.

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In Michigan
9:50 am
Thu July 23, 2009

Ex-state rep. to run for Mich. governor in 2010

LANSING, MI – Former state Rep. John Freeman has made it official and announced he will run for Michigan governor in 2010.

The Democrat from Madison Heights served six years in the Legislature before leaving because of term limits in 1998. He most recently led a group pushing for changes to health care in Michigan.

Freeman sent a fundraising e-mail Wednesday saying proposals in Lansing are "stale" and "out of touch."

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Sports
5:27 am
Thu July 23, 2009

Lugnuts beat Chiefs

PEORIA, IL – The Lansing Lugnuts topped the Peoria Chiefs 6-2 last night at O'Brien Field in the opener of a three-game series. The win maked the first time during the second half that the Lugnuts had won consecutive games. Lansing's season-high winning streak stands at just three games, set twice during the first half. Tonight at 8:00 p. m. the Lugnuts and Chiefs play number two of their three-game series.

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Sports
5:24 am
Thu July 23, 2009

Latta scores 22 to help Atlanta beat Detroit

AUBURN HILLS, MI – Reserves Ivory Latta and Angel McCoughtry combined for 42 points as the Atlanta Dream beat Detroit 98-95 in overtime Wednesday, the latest loss for the defending WNBA champion.

Another reserve, Michelle Snow, added 16 points and 12 rebounds for Atlanta.

Kara Braxton had 25 points and 12 rebounds for Detroit (5-9), which went to overtime for the fourth time in six games and is mired at the bottom of the Eastern Conference.

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Sports
5:21 am
Thu July 23, 2009

Branyan lifts Mariners past Tigers

DETROIT – Russell Branyan hit a two-out, two-run homer in the eighth inning to give Felix Hernandez and the Seattle Mariners a 2-1 victory over the Detroit Tigers on Wednesday night.

Branyan drove a 1-0 pitch from Bobby Seay (1-2) into the stands in right-center for his 24th homer.

Hernandez (11-3) struck out eight in seven innings, allowing one run and six hits. Mark Lowe pitched a perfect eighth and David Aardsma finished for his 23rd save in 25 chances.

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In Michigan
6:42 pm
Wed July 22, 2009

Delta announces 2Q loss

DETROIT, MI – Michigan's largest air carrier released its second quarter results Wednesday. Delta officials say the airline lost $257 million in the first three months of this year.

AUDIO:
Delta's balance sheet was hit hard by fuel-related costs and expenses associated with its merger with Northwest. Excluding those costs, the airline would have made a $191 million net profit.

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In Michigan
6:09 pm
Wed July 22, 2009

House Tax Policy Committee continues testimony in Lansing

LANSING, MI – A state House committee met Wednesday to discuss Michigan's tax structure. The rest of the Legislature is in recess this week.

The House Tax Policy committee has been taking testimony from interest groups over the past few weeks. The committee chair hopes to hear from a couple dozen groups before the fiscal year ends in the Fall.

On Wednesday, the committee heard from the Michigan Municipal League. Robin Beltramini is president of the league, and a councilwoman in Troy.

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In Michigan
5:13 pm
Wed July 22, 2009

MSU and U-M students come together on education funding

Lansing, MI – Students from Michigan State University and the University of Michigan will hold a joint news conference at the Capital in Lansing Thursday. They're concerned about budget proposals that call for the elimination of the state scholarships and cuts to college funding.

State legislators haven't passed a budget yet, but they're looking to cut the Michigan Promise scholarship program and general appropriations for colleges and universities.

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In Michigan
5:12 pm
Wed July 22, 2009

State House GOP unveils budget-balancing plan

LANSING, MI – State House Republicans unveiled their plan Wednesday to balance the state's budget by cutting spending by $1.4 billion. That number matches the Republican-controlled state Senate's target for cuts.

House Minority Leader Kevin Elsenheimer says deep program cuts are necessary to avoid raising taxes.

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In Michigan
4:43 pm
Wed July 22, 2009

Mich. House Republicans detail budget priorities

LANSING, MI – Republicans in the Michigan House are detailing a state budget proposal that includes using more federal stimulus money to fix roads and make loans available to small businesses.

Republicans were scheduled to discuss the plan Wednesday.

Michigan faces potential budget shortfalls of $2.7 billion in the fiscal year starting in October. Republicans want to balance the budget without tax or fee increases.

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Top Stories
3:47 pm
Wed July 22, 2009

Dems pondering ballot questions

LANSING, MI – The state Democratic Party has a list of prospective questions that voters could decide in next year's elections.

AUDIO:
Democratic Party Chairman Mark Brewer's list includes boosting the minimum wage and unemployment benefits, cutting utility rates, a one-year moratorium on home foreclosures, and requiring employers to offer health benefits.

Brewer says these issues could also help Democratic candidates next year.

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WKAR Features
1:54 pm
Wed July 22, 2009

Nation's oldest family mint farm fights foreclosure

Linette Crosby on her 140-acre mint farm.
Kevin Lavery, WKAR News

St. Johns, MI – The Crosby Mint Farm near St. Johns bills itself as the oldest continuously operating mint farm in the country. It first planted roots back in 1912. Jim Crosby and his sister Linette are preparing for the farm's 98th harvest - and they're fighting to keep it from becoming their last. The farm is in foreclosure, and the siblings are trying to sell enough mint oil to stave off an auction.

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Business
10:51 am
Wed July 22, 2009

GM, Chrysler defend dealer cuts

WASHINGTON – General Motors and Chrysler are defending their plans to eliminate about 3,000 dealerships across the nation during the second day of congressional hearings on the auto industry.

Under criticism in Congress, lawyers for the two auto companies say the dealer reductions were needed as part of a larger plan to help them rebound from bankruptcy. The automakers say the alternative was liquidation and massive job losses.

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In Michigan
10:48 am
Wed July 22, 2009

Michigan Dems may seek $10 minimum wage in 2010

LANSING, MI – The Michigan Democratic Party is considering asking voters to raise the state's minimum wage to $10 an hour.

The minimum wage currently is $7.40 an hour.

The potential 2010 ballot initiative was among a few discussed Wednesday by party chairman Mark Brewer.

The Democratic Party also is researching ballot proposals to reduce utility bills, require employers to provide health care and impose a one-year moratorium on home foreclosures.

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In Michigan
10:25 am
Wed July 22, 2009

About 2,600 DPS employees told to reapply for jobs

DETROIT – About 2,600 Detroit Public Schools employees have been told to reapply for their jobs - or risk losing them.

The district on Tuesday declared the positions vacant and said staff had until Friday to interview with their principals or request an interview. Employees from at least 40 affected schools who don't respond may be reassigned.

The Detroit News and Detroit Free Press report the schools are being "reconstituted" in response to a failure to meet state annual yearly progress standards.

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In Michigan
10:09 am
Wed July 22, 2009

Bernero picks up firefighters' union endorsement

EAST LANSING, MI – The union that represents Lansing firefighters has endorsed Mayor Virg Bernero in his reelection bid. International Association of Firefighters local 421 made the announcement today. Local president Bryan Epling says Bernero has been committed to supporting the fire department, even through difficult budget years.

"It is comforting to know that our mayor will continue to be an outspoken advocate for the public safety needs of our community and for the men and women of our department," he said.

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In Michigan
9:59 am
Wed July 22, 2009

Mich. House Republicans detail budget priorities

LANSING, MI – Republicans in the Michigan House are detailing a state budget proposal that includes using more federal stimulus money to fix roads and make loans available to small businesses.

Republicans are scheduled to discuss the plan later Wednesday.

Michigan faces potential budget shortfalls of $2.7 billion in the fiscal year starting in October. Republicans want to balance the budget without tax or fee increases.

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Sports
6:41 am
Wed July 22, 2009

Titans agree to terms with draft pick Javon Ringer

NASHVILLE, TN – The Tennessee Titans have agreed to terms on a multiyear contract with rookie running back Javon Ringer.

Ringer was a fifth-round draft pick earlier this year out of Michigan State. He will compete with Chris Johnson and LenDale White for playing time this season.

The Titans have now agreed to terms with nine of their 11 draft choices, with only top pick wide receiver Kenny Britt and second-round defensive lineman Sen'Derrick Marks unsigned.

The team opens training camp Friday, July 31.

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Sports
6:38 am
Wed July 22, 2009

Ordonez grand slam helps Tigers beat Seattle

DETROIT – Magglio Ordonez hit a grand slam in a five-run first inning and the Detroit Tigers held on for a 9-7 win over the Seattle Mariners on Tuesday night.

Detroit scored just five runs while being swept in a three-game series at Yankee Stadium last weekend, but matched that total before making their first out against Seattle.

Rookie Rick Porcello (9-6) got the win despite allowing five runs on nine hits and a walk in five innings.

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In Michigan
5:42 pm
Tue July 21, 2009

Mich. high court: Counties can pass smoking rules

LANSING, MI – The Michigan Supreme Court has ruled that counties can put more stringent anti-smoking rules in place than state lawmakers.

Courts have said only the Legislature can ban smoking in restaurants and bars. But local governments are prohibiting smoking inside other businesses because of secondhand smoke risks.

All seven justices on the high court said Tuesday that local officials can adopt stricter smoking regulations than the state to safeguard public health.

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Top Stories
4:42 pm
Tue July 21, 2009

Granholm calls for more business tax incentives

LANSING, MI – Governor Granholm and members of her administration say they need more tax credits to lure businesses to the state. The Michigan Economic Growth Authority has reached the limit of how many tax breaks it can give out this year.

Greg Main is the president of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. He says that Michigan will lose business to other states without more credits.

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Top Stories
3:07 pm
Tue July 21, 2009

Granholm: Tax incentives to run out for businesses

LANSING, MI – Gov. Jennifer Granholm and economic development officials want lawmakers to let the state offer more tax incentives to businesses that create or retain jobs.

Michigan is about to run out of tax credits it can grant in 2009.

The Democratic-led House has voted to raise the cap on the amount of tax incentives. The legislation is pending in a Republican-controlled Senate committee.

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