LANSING, MI – Budget negotiations are stepping up with the start of the state's new fiscal year now less than six weeks away. Governor Granholm says she still believes a shutdown can be averted. But there are a lot of details and disagreements to be settled first.
LANSING, MI – Governor Granholm says the late U.S. Senator Edward Kennedy will be remembered as a voice for the under-privileged. She says he knew how to forge deals with those who disagreed with him.
"He came from a family of privilege, but he used that position in a way to be the megaphone for children, and for the elderly, and for people with disabilities," she says. "It's a huge loss in the Senate. It's not just a huge loss for Massachusetts. It's a huge loss for the nation."
EAST LANSING, MI – The health of retail businesses in Michigan continues to be weak but is slowly gaining strength.
AUDIO: The Michigan Retailers Association says July was the best month for state retailers in a year. Overall, businesses with sales declines still outnumber those with increasing sales. But for the third straight month, the gap has narrowed.
James Hallan is the association's President and CEO.
WIXOM, MI – Ford plans to sell its vacant Wixom plant to manufacturers of solar panel and batteries. Legislative committees in Lansing heard testimony Wednesday from Wixom officials and representatives from the companies.
AUDIO: The green-technology manufacturers need the Legislature to create tax credits in order to receive federal funding as well to set up shop in Wixom. Those refundable tax credits would not be reflected in the budget until 2012.
MASON, MI – Ingham County Commissioners have voted against putting a county-wide millage proposal on the ballot. The millage would have guaranteed funding for the sheriff's department for the next five years.
AUDIO: The millage would have offset cuts to the sheriff's department and provided funding for road patrols in rural townships that don't have their own police department.
Last night, the proposal was rejected by a vote of 10 to 6.
SOUTHFIELD, MI – A Michigan judge is being sued by a woman who says she was forced to remove her Muslim headscarf in his courtroom.
Melanie Elturk, an attorney for the Michigan chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, says the federal lawsuit against Wayne County Circuit Judge William Callahan will be filed Wednesday. The Michigan CAIR chapter is joining in the suit.