LANSING, MI – The state Senate has approved legislation that would make it illegal to impersonate a veteran for financial or professional gain. More than thirty other states have passed similar laws after reports of people pretending to be war heroes to get rewards reserved for combat veterans.
State Senator Jason Allen was in the Air National Guard.
Lansing, MI – A newly elected Lansing city councilmember may not be able to take office unless she pays delinquent property taxes.
Tina Houghton was elected last week to serve as the city's Second Ward councilmember. But she owes more than $3,600 in property taxes to the city. The Lansing city charter says anyone owing the city money cannot hold public office. Houghton says she will pay off the debt before being sworn-in on January 1.
LANSING, MI – Advocates seeking a statewide ban on smoking in workplaces are growing impatient with Senate inaction on the question. They are still hoping to enact a workplace smoking ban before the end of this year.
AUDIO: The Senate has been sitting on the ban for five and a half months. The measure would outlaw smoking in taverns, restaurants, offices, and factories with exceptions only for cigar bars and Detroit's three casinos.
SACRAMENTO, CA – A new study warns Michigan is one of ten states on the brink of economic disaster. A report from the Pew Center on the States says rising unemployment, high home foreclosure rates and big drops in tax collections could mean higher taxes, more layoffs of government workers and fewer services.
MASON, MI – Governor Granholm is continuing to push Senate Republicans to support new revenue to restore money for schools facing big cuts.
AUDIO: The governor's been meeting with parents and educators to try and get them to prod Republican lawmakers to support reducing business tax breaks, or new taxes on tobacco and beer to help reverse school cuts. School officials say they're already cutting programs and laying-off teachers.
About 800 parents, teachers, and school administrators were at the state Capitol Tuesday to demand more money for K-12 education. They are opposed to a new round of cuts to schools that are scheduled to begin later this month.
A Michigan Senate committee has voted to reject Gov. Jennifer Granholm's order letting her appoint two department directors now named by commissions.
The Republican-controlled Senate Appropriations Committee also voted Tuesday to reject the Democratic governor's plan to combine the Department of Natural Resources and Department of Environmental Quality.
The panel instead voted along party lines to make the Department of Environmental Quality an agency under the Department of Natural Resources.