In Michigan
11:07 am
Tue March 9, 2010

Dem gov candidate wants to open Mich. state bank

LANSING, MI – Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero says Michigan should follow the lead of North Dakota and open a state bank that could make low-interest loans to businesses and college students.

The Democratic gubernatorial candidate said Tuesday the state bank also could ease the foreclosure crisis by buying down mortgage portfolios held by smaller banks in Michigan and partner with other private banks.

The Bank of North Dakota is the nation's only state-owned bank, but politicians in several states are starting to think of copying the idea.

Read more
WKAR Features
10:50 am
Tue March 9, 2010

reWorking Michigan: No Worker Left Behind Retrains Laid Off Workers

Melissa Ingells, WKAR

Lansing, MI –

Read more
In Michigan
10:08 am
Tue March 9, 2010

Bishop reform committee continues discussion of health benefits

LANSING, MI – A state Senate panel is continuing discussion of a controversial proposal to require all public employees and teachers to pay at least 20% of their health care benefits.

Audio:

Paul Hense is with the Small Business Association of Michigan. He told lawmakers that business owners are frustrated they have to pay for their own health care, while they see public employees living with comfortable health plans from taxpayer dollars.

Read more
In Michigan
10:07 am
Tue March 9, 2010

Michigan's January jobless rate was 14.3%

LANSING, MI – Michigan's jobless rate remained stable in January. It dropped very slightly to 14.3%.

Audio:

The state's unemployment rate has held pretty steady at a little above or below 15% since last summer. The jobless rate in January might have been worse except that already downsized factory workforces didn't face big winter layoffs.

Read more
Sports
6:02 am
Tue March 9, 2010

Lucas named to Big Ten first team

UNDATED – UNDATED (AP) - Michigan State's Kalin Lucas has been named to the Big Ten's first team in separate voting by conference coaches and media members. The second team included Michigan's DeShawn Sims. His teammate Manny Harris and Michigan State's Draymond Green made the third team.

Read more
Sports
5:56 am
Tue March 9, 2010

Heyward homers to lead Braves to 12-4 rout of Tigers

LAKELAND, FL – Jason Heyward homered during a five-run first inning Monday and the Atlanta Braves went on to a 12-4 exhibition victory over the Detroit Tigers.

The 20-year-old outfielder, considered one of the top prospects in baseball, blasted a 3-2 pitch by Detroit's Max Scherzer an estimated 450 feet to drive in the first two runs of the game.

Scherzer didn't get out of the first inning, giving up four hits and three walks to the eight batters he faced.

Read more
In Michigan
7:24 pm
Mon March 8, 2010

Blue Cross scraps plan to buy Lansing-based HMO

LANSING, MI – A unit of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan has dropped plans to buy the membership of a Lansing-based health maintenance organizations after the U.S. Justice Department came out against the deal.

Blue Care Network announced September 15 it planned to buy the membership of Physicians Health Plan of Mid-Michigan. Sparrow Health System owns the Lansing-based HMO, which has about 80,000 members. Southfield-based Blue Care Network has about 680,000 members.

The 2 companies announced Monday they were dropping the plan.

Read more
Top Stories
7:15 pm
Mon March 8, 2010

State claims big improvements in child welfare on eve of compliance report

Melissa Ingells, WKAR

LANSING, MI – State officials say Michigan has dramatically improved its foster care system since agreeing to an out-of-court settlement a year and a half ago. A court-appointed monitor will release a report Tuesday on whether the state is keeping a promise to improve its child welfare system.

Audio:

Read more
In Michigan
7:01 pm
Mon March 8, 2010

State worker pay freeze in question

LANSING, MI – A lingering question at the state Capitol is whether Republican state Senate Majority Leader Mike Bishop can find enough support to block a pay raise promised to state employees. Bishop has said he will continue to push for a freeze.

Audio:

Some Democratic senators voted against the pay freeze last week because they said state workers were promised this raise.

Read more
Top Stories
6:55 pm
Mon March 8, 2010

Advocates say inaction will cause massive problems for schools

LANSING, MI – Advocates say many school districts could go into deficit if lawmakers take no action this year to fix the state's ailing School Aid Fund.

Audio:

Members of the group Save Our Students, Schools and State say the Proposal A funding structure for K-12 schools is out of date. It was adopted by voters in the mid-1990s. Tom White is the chairman of the coalition. He says the Legislature needs to evaluate the effectiveness Proposal A.

Read more

Pages