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In Michigan
6:13 pm
Fri May 1, 2009

Granholm repeats confidence in Chrysler's future

East Lansing, MI – East Lansing, MI
Rick Pluta (MPRN)

Governor Granholm uses her weekly radio address to reiterate her support for Chrysler's turnaround plan that includes a partnership with the Italian carmaker Fiat.

She says it provides some certainty about Chrysler's future, although she's disappointed the company has to use bankruptcy restructuring to finish the deal.

Chrysler's idled all its plants while the bankruptcy proceedings are underway.

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In Michigan
6:10 pm
Fri May 1, 2009

Mich. leaders make progress on state budget deal

Lansing, MI – Lansing, MI (AP)

Michigan's state government leaders have hammered out the basic framework of a plan to help erase a budget deficit that likely exceeds $1 billion.

Senate Republicans said Friday the framework calls for about $300 million in budget cuts from various state departments in this fiscal year.

Money from the federal stimulus package will help fill in the rest of the budget hole caused in large part by falling tax revenues during the recession.

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In Michigan
5:45 pm
Fri May 1, 2009

MI Has Six New Probable Flu Cases

East Lansing, MI – East Lansing, MI
Kevin Lavery, WKAR Radio News

Michigan health officials are reporting six new probable cases of swine flu in the state.

All of the cases are in Ottawa County.

At this point, there are only two confirmed H-1-N-1 influenza cases in Michigan.

Janet Olszewski directs the Michigan Department of Community Health.

She says the six new probable cases do not raise the state's level of alert.

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In Michigan
6:20 pm
Thu April 30, 2009

Michigan Senate approves 4th battery tax credit

Lansing, MI – The Michigan Senate has approved a $100 million tax credit for the company that will supply batteries for the Chevy Volt plug-in hybrid car.

State economic development officials two weeks ago awarded the refundable tax credit to Korean-based LG Chem and a U.S. subsidiary, Troy-based Compact Inc.

But the credit also needs legislative approval by May 30 to take effect.

The Republican-controlled Senate voted 36-0 Thursday to send the
legislation to the Democrat-led House.

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In Michigan
6:16 pm
Thu April 30, 2009

Mich. utility plans 5% increase on electric bills

Lansing, MI – Lansing, MI (AP)
Consumers Energy Co. plans to raise residential and business electric bills 5% in mid-May.

Michigan's second-largest utility is taking advantage of a new state law that lets it automatically increase power bills if regulators do not act by May 14.

The typical Consumers Energy household would pay $4 more a month according to papers filed late Wednesday.

That is less than the Jackson-based utility's original request to add $10 to monthly residential bills.

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In Michigan
6:13 pm
Thu April 30, 2009

State's second H1N1 flu case confirmed

Lansing, MI – AP / Scott Pohl, WKAR Radio News
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Thursday confirmed Michigan's second case of swine
flu.

The 34-year-old woman from Ottawa County west of Grand Rapids
was released from a hospital last week.

State officials do not know her travel history yet.

But state Department of Community Health Director Janet Olszewski
says many newly infected people did not travel to Mexico or other places with known cases of H1N1.

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In Michigan
6:08 pm
Thu April 30, 2009

Chrysler bankruptcy raises questions for workers

Auburn Hills, MI – Auburn Hills, MI (AP/MPRN)
Fears that a Chrysler LLC bankruptcy could devastate southeast Michigan and harm Chrysler workers and retirees nationwide were abating somewhat as details of the deal were released Thursday.

"It's the best deal we can come up with," said Mark Conner,
who works on the production line that makes Jeep Wranglers at
Chrysler's plant in Toledo, Ohio.

"Anything else that could have happened would be worse."

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In Michigan
6:44 am
Thu April 30, 2009

Chrysler may be headed for bankruptcy

Auburn Hills, MI – Chrysler could be headed for bankruptcy protection.

A source tells The Associated Press that the automaker's restructuring plan hit a roadblock when talks broke off with its lenders early today.

Chrysler's deadline to get more federal aid by cutting labor costs, slashing debt and taking on a partner is 11:59 p.m. Eastern time.

The company has reached new deals with its unions in the U. S. and Canada.

And an alliance with Italian automaker Fiat was to be signed later today.

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In Michigan
6:19 pm
Wed April 29, 2009

AP sources: Fiat to sign Chrysler partnership deal

Detroit, MI – Detroit, MI (AP)

Three people briefed on the deal say Italian automaker Fiat Group SpA will sign paperwork by Thursday to become a partner with Chrysler LLC.

The partnership is the last piece of a huge restructuring plan
needed to keep Chrysler alive.

The U.S. government has lent Chrysler $4 billion and gave it until Thursday to get concessions from unions, reduce debt and take on a partner or face liquidation.

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In Michigan
6:16 pm
Wed April 29, 2009

Smoking ban tabled by budget crisis

East Lansing, MI – Rick Pluta (Michigan Public Radio Network)

A ban on smoking in most Michigan workplaces will have to wait until after the state's budget crisis is resolved. State Representative Bert Johnson chairs the legislative committee discussing the issue.

He says a smoking ban will need the support of the House and the Senate.

But, he says, the leadership of both chambers is focused on the state's billion-dollar budget emergency.

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In Michigan
6:13 pm
Wed April 29, 2009

Worst case: Michigan deficit could reach $1.3B

Lansing, MI – Lansing, MI (AP)

Michigan likely is looking at a budget shortfall this year that could reach $1.3 billion.

Legislative leaders and Gov. Jennifer Granholm earlier pegged the deficit at $785 million.

But Granholm spokeswoman Liz Boyd said Wednesday that, in a worst-case scenario, the shortfall could climb to $1.3 billion.

That's because annual and quarterly state income tax payments paid this month are down. The revenue picture will be clearer after Thursday.

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In Michigan
6:10 pm
Wed April 29, 2009

Sparrow Hospital Implementing Swine Flu Plan

East Lansing, MI – East Lansing, MI (WKAR Radio)

Michigan health officials say they're reviewing their plans for treating swine flu in the region.

Wednesday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed that a 34-year-old Livingston County woman is the first actual case in the state.

The CDC is also testing a probable case from Ottawa County.

Robin Roach is the director of infection prevention and epidemiology at Sparrow Health System in Lansing.

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In Michigan
6:21 pm
Tue April 28, 2009

Government, major Chrysler debtholders reach deal

Washington, DC – Washington, DC (AP)

A person familiar with the talks says the Treasury Department has reached a tentative agreement with four of Chrysler's major debtholders as the automaker races to stave off bankruptcy.

Under the agreement, the four banks will forgo claims to their portion of Chrysler's $6.9 billion debt in exchange for $2 billion in cash when the deal closes.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the agreement has not been formally announced.

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In Michigan
5:44 pm
Tue April 28, 2009

GM to force more than 1,000 dealers to close

Detroit, MI – Detroit, MI (AP)
General Motors Corp. says it will force 1,000 to 1,200 underperforming dealerships to close their doors as the automaker tries to thin dealer ranks to make the remaining outlets stronger.

Dealers were told of the move in a video conference Tuesday.

In addition, the company expects to lose 500 Hummer and Saturn dealers when the brands close or are sold, and it expects 400 dealers to close voluntarily.

Another 500 would be consolidated into other dealers.

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In Michigan
5:41 pm
Tue April 28, 2009

Ingham Cty says region is ready for swine flu

East Lansing, MI – East Lansing, MI (WKAR Radio)

Ingham County healthcare providers and public safety departments are ready for a possible swine flu outbreak.

That was the message Tuesday from the director of the Ingham County Heath Department.

County Heath Department director Dean Sienko says he's been in contact with local hospitals, pharmacies and police and fire departments to plan a course of action if the swine flu is found here.

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Top Stories
11:36 am
Tue April 28, 2009

Federal government is sending antiviral medicine to Michigan

Lansing, MI – Lansing, MI (WKAR) - The Michigan Department of Community Health has asked for enough medication to treat 250,000 people if necessary. A department spokesman says that shipment should arrive by the end of the week.

The state already has a stockpile on hand large enough to treat one million people.

In the meantime, the state has partially activated an emergency operations center in response to the outbreak.

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In Michigan
9:57 am
Tue April 28, 2009

Michigan Reports Probable Swine Flu Case

Lansing, MI – Lansing, MI (WKAR) - Health officials in Michigan are keeping a close watch on a possible case of swine flu in the state.

The Michigan Department of Community Health says a Livingston County woman may have contracted the illness during a recent trip to the Texas-Mexico border area.

Dr. Greg Holzman is the department's Chief Medical Executive.

He says it's important to stress that this single incident is only a probable case.

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In Michigan
9:57 am
Tue April 28, 2009

Lansing leaders watch auto developments

Lansing, MI – Lansing, MI (MPRN) - Political leaders in Lansing are trying to anticipate how General Motors and Chrysler's restructuring plans will affect government programs and spending.

Layoffs, reduced salaries, and production slowdowns in the auto industry are expected to reduce tax revenues and hurt funding for state services.

At the same time, demands for public assistance are expected to grow as layoffs add more people to the ranks of the unemployed.

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In Michigan
9:56 am
Tue April 28, 2009

Two possible swine flu cases now reported

Lansing, MI – Lansing, MI (AP) - Michigan is now looking at two possible cases of swine flu.

The latest is in Kent County.

The Grand Rapids Press reports a 41-year-old woman who recently visited Mexico is being tested by the Michigan Department of Community Health.

If the results are positive, samples will be sent to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta for further testing.

Yesterday, officials announced that a woman from Livingston County might have swine flu.

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In Michigan
5:26 pm
Mon April 27, 2009

Probable case of swine flu reported in Michigan

Lansing, MI – Lansing, MI (AP/WKAR)
The Michigan Department of Community Health is reporting a probable case of swine flu in Livingston County.

State laboratory results show what appears to be swine flu in a 34-year-old woman who recently traveled to the Texas-Mexico border.

The lab results will be sent to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to confirm whether the case is positive.

People with respiratory illness are strongly urged to stay home to avoid spreading the disease.

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In Michigan
10:06 am
Mon April 27, 2009

UAW, Chrysler and Fiat reach concession deal

Detroit, MI – Detroit, MI (AP) - The United Auto Workers union says it has reached a concession agreement with Chrysler, Fiat and the U. S. government.

The union says the deal is painful but takes advantage of the second chance the company was given by the Treasury Department.

The government rejected Chrysler's viability plan in February and said it could not stand on its own.

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In Michigan
10:05 am
Mon April 27, 2009

Michigan reports possible swine flu case

Lansing, MI – Lansing, MI (WKAR) - Health officials in Michigan are keeping a close watch on a possible case of swine flu in the state.

The Michigan Department of Community Health says a Livingston County woman may have contracted the illness during a recent trip to the Texas-Mexico border area.

MDCH Chief Medical Executive Dr. Greg Holzman says it's important to stress that this single incident is only a probable case.

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In Michigan
10:04 am
Mon April 27, 2009

Lansing City Council to hold 2nd hearing on ramp

East Lansing, MI – East Lansing, MI (WKAR) - The Lansing City Council is holding another public hearing on a proposal to sell a parking ramp to Lansing Community College.

The council rejected the sale of the North Capital Parking Ramp last September.

LCC officials have been looking at ways to improve parking at its downtown campus and have proposed building a new ramp.

Bob Johnson is the city's director of Planning and Neighborhood Development.

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In Michigan
10:03 am
Mon April 27, 2009

MDCH watches swine flu

East Lansing, MI – East Lansing, MI (MPRN) - Laura Weber, Michigan Public Radio Network

The Michigan Department of Community Health is on alert for the spread of swine flu.

There are no reported cases of swine flu in Michigan.

As of late Monday afternoon, there were 40 reports of the influenza strain in the nation.

The Centers for Disease Control declared a public health emergency after swine flu spread to the U. S. from Mexico where 149 deaths are suspected due to the virus.

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In Michigan
10:02 am
Mon April 27, 2009

UAW official says Saturn demise may not impact LDT

East Lansing, MI – East Lansing, MI (WKAR) - One General Motors brand made in Lansing is ending production sooner than planned.

GM's Saturn was originally scheduled to end in 20-11.

Company officials Monday moved that up to this year as part of its government-mandated restructuring.

Brian Fredline is the President of UAW local 602, whose members assemble the Saturn Outlook at GM's Delta Township facility.

He's hopeful the decision won't seriously impact workers there.

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In Michigan
8:56 am
Mon April 27, 2009

Case of swine flu reported in Michigan

Lansing, MI – The Michigan Department of Community Health is reporting a probable case of swine flu in Livingston County.
State laboratory results show what appears to be swine flu in a 34-year-old woman who recently traveled to the Texas-Mexico border.

The lab results will be sent to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to confirm whether the case is positive.

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In Michigan
6:51 am
Mon April 27, 2009

Lansing City Council to hold 2nd hearing on ramp

Lansing, MI – The Lansing City Council is holding another public hearing on a proposal to sell a parking ramp to Lansing Community College.

The council rejected the sale of the North Capital Parking Ramp last September.

LCC officials have been looking at ways to improve parking at its downtown campus and have proposed building a new ramp.

Bob Johnson is the city's director of Planning and Neighborhood Development.

He says the sale of the North Capital Ramp would benefit the city and the college.

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In Michigan
6:46 am
Mon April 27, 2009

MDOCH watches swine flu

Lansing, MI – The Michigan Department of Community Health is on alert for the spread of swine flu.

There are no reported cases of swine flu in Michigan.

There are 20 reports of the influenza strain in the nation, one of them in Ohio.

The Centers for Disease Control declared a public health emergency after swine flu spread to the U. S. from Mexico where the strain has killed at least 80 people.

The disease spreads from person to person and not through pork or food products.

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In Focus Today
10:14 am
Fri April 24, 2009

MSU receives largest anonymous gift in its 154-year history

WKAR File

East Lansing, MI – East Lansing, MI (WKAR) - Michigan State University has received an anonymous gift of $10 million.

Of that total, $7 million will go to financial aid and scholarships. There will be a focus on female and minority students. The other $3 million comes with no strings attached.

Over a dozen universities have received anonymous donations totaling more than $60 million in recent weeks.

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In Michigan
6:10 am
Fri April 24, 2009

Governor Granholm to hold education summit

East Lansing, MI – Governor Granholm will host an education summit next week in Lansing.

She says 600 community leaders will come together to discuss how to make Michigan a leader in education.

The Governor says she's encouraged by the steps some communities have already taken to help high school graduates.

The Governor says she wants more "Promise" communities, which would offer free college tuition to local high school graduates.

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