Mark Bashore

Host, Current State

Mark Bashore is host of Current State, WKAR's daily news show focusing on community issues, arts and culture, music and more.

Mark is well-known to WKAR listeners as mid-Michigan host of All Things Considered for several years prior to hosting Current State.  

Mark Bashore joined WKAR in May 2007. Prior to his arrival at WKAR, he hosted a talk show on WJIM AM in 2005 and previous to that was morning show host and producer at WFMK in Lansing for 14 years.

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Arts & Culture
11:35 am
Fri January 16, 2015

LIVE MUSIC FRIDAY: Ray Kamalay | WKAR

Ray Kamalay is our musical guest performing live from Studio S today.
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

It's Live Music Friday and today, Current State welcomes guitarist and bandleader Ray Kamalay. He performs “vintage music with style".

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Politics & Government
11:36 am
Thu January 15, 2015

Ingham Board Chair McGrain assesses 2015 agenda

Brian McGrain chairs the Ingham County Board of Commissioners.

Last November, Ingham county voters resoundingly approved two millage proposals. The new Board of Commissioners will be turning its attention to those soon, as it launches its  2015 session. One will expand the county’s network of trails. The other will maintain the Ingham County Health Plan, which provides medical care coverage for the county’s neediest residents.

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Politics & Government
11:58 am
Wed January 14, 2015

BWL commissioner explains Lark ouster

BWL commissioner Dennis Louney (right) with Current State host Mark Bashore.
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

More than a year after he came under fire for his utility’s heavily criticized response to widespread ice storm outages, Peter Lark has been dismissed as General Manager of the Lansing Board of Water and Light. In a 5-to-3 vote, the board that oversees the city-owned utility voted to fire Lark with cause. The motion also named former BWL manager Dick Pefley as interim GM.

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Politics & Government
11:48 am
Wed January 14, 2015

Cong. Bishop on Keystone XL, immigration

Cong. Mike Bishop (R) represents Michigan's 8th district.
Credit www.electmikebishop.com

For just over a week, Mike Bishop has served as the new U.S. Congressman representing Lansing and East Lansing. Bishop takes his seat at the Capitol amid a wave of confidence for Republicans in Washington. For the first time since 2007, the GOP enjoys a majority in the Senate as well as the House. That’s obviously changing the political dynamic in the nation’s capital.

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Community
11:21 am
Wed January 14, 2015

Remembering Rev. Michael Murphy

Rev. Michael Murphy
Credit http://peopleschurchucc.org/

The Reverend Michael Murphy is being laid to rest today. Murphy spent more than 20 years in Lansing as founder of St. Stephen’s Community Church. He also served as a Lansing city council member and state Representative. A funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. at Tabernacle of David Church in Lansing.

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Politics & Government
12:45 pm
Tue January 13, 2015

BWL chief's job is on the line

Lansing Board of Water and Light General Manager and CEO J. Peter Lark
Credit Joe Linstroth/WKAR

Two members of the board that oversees the Lansing Board of Water and Light have called for a meeting to discuss whether General Manager Peter Lark should be running Lansing's city-owned utility.  That meeting is set for 4:30 this afternoon at BWL headquarters on South Washington.  

Current State talks to the Lansing State Journal's Steven Reed who broke the news Monday evening. 

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Politics & Government
12:45 pm
Tue January 13, 2015

MI Supreme Court reconsiders right to work, pensions

The Michigan Hall of Justice in Lansing.
Credit http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Grosscha

  

The Michigan Supreme Court begins hearing arguments today involving two disputed laws passed during the first term of Governor Rick Snyder.

First, justices will consider whether the state’s recent ‘right-to-work’ law, which eliminated the payment of union dues as a condition of employment, also applies to unionized state employees.  

Second, it will explore whether the state exceeded its authority in 2011 when Michigan pensioners became subject to a 4-percent contribution from their pay in order to keep full benefits.

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Politics & Government
12:17 pm
Mon January 12, 2015

New House Speaker Cotter weighs MI tax options

State House Speaker Kevin Cotter (R-Mt. Pleasant)
Credit http://gophouse.org/representatives/central/cotter/

What is ahead for Michigan in 2015? An income tax cut? A sales tax hike? Could elected officials move to repeal the state’s prevailing wage provisions? All are possible. A clearer picture will begin to emerge Wednesday when the 2015 Michigan legislature convenes.

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Sports
12:09 pm
Mon January 12, 2015

Rexrode, Martin pick Buckeyes to win NCAA football crown

AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, site of tonight's national college football championship game.
Credit Flickr - bobbyh_80

College football’s first ever national championship game is set for tonight. Ohio State and Oregon vie for the honors beginning at 8:30 on ESPN. The Oregon Ducks are six-point favorites, although both teams share identical 13-and-one season records.

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Arts & Culture
11:56 am
Mon January 12, 2015

DESERT ISLAND DOWNLOAD: Lansing City Council Vice President Judi Brown Clark

Today, we’re feature another Current State “Desert Island Download.”  It’s a chance for music lovers in the Lansing area to talk about a piece of recorded music they consider indispensable, music they’d want with them on the proverbial "desert island".

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Education
11:53 am
Fri January 9, 2015

The benefits and challenges of Michigan's switch to the SAT

Wendy Zdeb-Roper of the Michigan Association of Secondary School Principals (left), and Gary Naeyaert of the Great Lakes Education Project discuss Michigan's upcoming switch to the SAT.
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

Michigan law requires that high school juniors are offered a free exam and free exam prep to determine college readiness. Next year, that exam will change. The Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) will take the place of the ACT, which has been used since 2007.

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Economy
11:40 am
Wed January 7, 2015

2015 job openings reflect changing MI economy

Carsten Hohnke of the MEDC (right), with Current State host Mark Bashore.
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

A closely-watched study predicts the creation of about 60,000 new jobs in Michigan this year.  That’s from the University of Michigan’s annual economic forecast, released recently. But only about 10-percent of those new jobs are expected to come from manufacturing, historically one of Michigan’s strongest job sectors, including here in Greater Lansing. So where are the new jobs coming from, and what trends are creating them?

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Politics & Government
12:12 pm
Mon January 5, 2015

Dem insiders anticipate new legislative priorities, sales tax vote

Four months from today, Michigan voters will make the next move regarding our state’s crumbling roads and bridges. They’ll decide whether to hike the state sales tax by one cent on the dollar. Approval would create over a billion dollars annually to help repair the roads, but it would also restore the state’s earned income tax credit and send more state revenue to schools. Rejection means Governor Rick Snyder and the legislature are back at square one in the road funding debate. So, what can we expect to see and hear over the next four months?

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Economy
10:58 am
Tue December 23, 2014

On ice storm anniversary, BWL chairman calls for more vigorous oversight

Steve Reed of the Lansing State Journal (center) and Lansing Board of Water and Light Chairman David Price (right), with Current State host Mark Bashore.
Credit WKAR/Bill Richards

This year’s Christmas holiday is bringing back unpleasant memories of last year’s intense ice storm and power outages. One year ago to the day, thousands of people in the Lansing area were without electricity because of hundreds of downed, ice-coated trees that disconnected lines.  Many residents spent days, some more than a week, without power, often at significant expense. The episode amounted to an embarassing right of passage for the capital city’s municipally-owned utility, the Lansing Board of Water and Light.

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Environment
11:43 am
Mon December 22, 2014

DNR gives update on wolves, moose and cougars (oh my!)

Credit Flickr - Ray Dumas

Last week, a Michigan-made home video created a stir on the internet, particularly among animal lovers. It showed a pair of adult moose in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula being fed through the window of a cabin. According to Mlive, the resident says the moose have begun appearing daily, apparently expecting to be fed. The video offers a fascinating, close-up view of these extraordinary animals in or near the wild.

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Politics & Government
11:47 am
Thu December 18, 2014

Lansing attorney weighs in on new U.S.-Cuba relations

Attorney Richard McLellan (right), with Current State host Mark Bashore
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

Americans have been busy discussing President Obama’s call to normalize relations with Cuba. Lansing-based attorney Richard McLellan, a long-time Michigan political insider and a two-time visitor to Cuba, supports the President’s move.

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Politics & Government
11:22 am
Wed December 17, 2014

Gov. Snyder says hope still alive for road funding compromise

Gov. Rick Snyder
Credit http://www.michigan.gov/

Audio Pending...

The Michigan legislature is in the eleventh hour of this year’s lame duck session. This week, legislative leaders and Gov. Rick Snyder have been meeting more often to try to hammer out a measure for road and bridge funding in the state. A couple meetings were held yesterday, and the Governor expressed concern over how little time remains. The 2014 session is scheduled to conclude tomorrow.

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Economy
11:35 am
Tue December 16, 2014

Auto analyst: pay hikes front and center for UAW

New contract bargaining between the United Auto Workers union and American automakers is scheduled for next year. Recently, we’ve been getting a clearer picture of the union’s priorities. UAW President Dennis Williams has indicated members want to eliminate a recently introduced  feature of the autoworker landscape:  “two-tier” wages and benefits.

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Politics & Government
12:20 pm
Fri December 12, 2014

Rep. Singh updates Michigan's lame duck session

Sam Singh (D-East Lansing)
Credit Courtesy of Rep. Sam Singh

The Michigan legislature is in the middle of an eventful lame duck session. Efforts are in high gear to hammer out a road and bridge funding measure before the session wraps next Thursday, but many other important issues are also being debated.

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Politics & Government
11:26 am
Thu December 11, 2014

EL officials push back against GOP plans limiting local control

East Lansing city manager George Lahanas
Credit http://www.cityofeastlansing.com/

This week, the Michigan legislature has caught the ire of some municipal leaders who fear the state may be overstepping its reach into local government. One Republican sponsored bill now headed to the House floor would ban local communities from entering into negotiations with developers over wages and  so-called “community benefits.”  The measure has evoked criticism from a number of Democratic civic officials.

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Lifestyle & Recreation
11:24 am
Thu December 11, 2014

Lansing man describes experience with South American psychotropic

According to the Ethnobotanical Stewardship Council website, ESC works to assure 'the sustainability and safe use of traditional plants'.
Credit http://www.ethnobotanicalcouncil.org/

“It’s as if a well has been sunk deep into the sediment of my life, an artesian well drilled into the stratified, impermeable bedrock of the past, and every memory that is forced to the surface breeds another ten in front of my eyes.” Those provocative words come from Sting’s 2003 memoir, "Broken Music." They recall his 1987 experience with a South American psychotropic brew called ayahuasca.

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Education
11:00 am
Tue December 9, 2014

Charter school advocate: judge MI authorizers on performance

Many in Michigan’s charter school community are crying foul over a recent report that criticizes the state’s charter school authorizers. Authorizers of charter schools are educational institutions, often colleges, whose responsibility is to ensure oversight, accountability and adequate performance.

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Politics & Government
12:00 pm
Tue December 2, 2014

Jobs, roads top concerns in post-election poll

Jeff Williams of Public Sector Consultants
Credit http://www.pscinc.com/

The 2014 election is in the rear view mirror, but its effects will certainly echo for years to come. After the last ballot was cast, some 600 Michigan voters were asked for their opinion on a number of statewide issues.

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Politics & Government
12:16 pm
Mon December 1, 2014

Guatemalan family in EL contends with immigration confusion

Oscar Castaneda hopes his family can stay in Michigan, but he may be required to return to his native Guatemala.
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

A family who has spent the last 15 years putting down roots in East Lansing is hoping to persuade U.S. authorities not to order them back to Central America. Oscar Castaneda is a native of Guatemala. He traces his predicament to likely bureaucratic errors dating back to the mid 1990's.

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Health
11:30 am
Mon November 24, 2014

Obamacare provision sheds light on payments to docs, hospitals

Dr. Kenneth Elmassian
Credit http://www.drkennethelmassian.com/

Important data recently shed light on the financial relationships between key members of Michigan’s medical community. Sunshine provisions contained in the Affordable Care Act require disclosure of the money paid to physicians and teaching  hospitals by drug and medical device manufacturers.

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Arts & Culture
11:45 am
Thu November 20, 2014

Stevie Wonder back in MI to perform legendary album

'Songs in the Key of Life' is one of Stevie Wonder's best-loved albums. He performs music from the album tonight at the Palace of Auburn Hills.

Tonight, a Michigan-born superstar returns home to perform a legendary album. Tonight at the Palace of Auburn Hills, Stevie Wonder will perform all the tracks on the album “Songs In The Key of Life.”

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Science & Technology
11:43 am
Thu November 20, 2014

Amateur rocketeers launching port-a-potty

Michigan is not among the first states that come to mind when you mention the aerospace industry. An amateur rocket launch scheduled for Saturday in southwest Michigan is unlikely to change that. On Saturday afternoon, members of a Michiana Rocketry Club plan to blast a port-a-potty into space near the community of Three Oaks, near the Indiana state line.

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Politics & Government
11:36 am
Wed November 19, 2014

Incoming MI Senate leader downplays electoral reform, religious freedom measure

Sen. Arlan Meekhof
Credit WKAR/Bill Richards

The Michigan legislative session beginning in January will include new leadership in the Senate and the House for both parties. Republican Arlan Meekhof will succeed Randy Richardville as Michigan’s Senate Majority Leader.

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Health
1:18 pm
Tue November 18, 2014

Enroll America assists ACA signups

Credit Flickr - Adrian Clark

Open enrollment for health insurance offered through the Affordable Care Act has begun again. Michiganders without health coverage can enroll in plans offered by 16 different insurance carriers. The enrollment period runs through February 15, but anyone wanting coverage by the beginning of the year needs to enroll by December 15.

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Politics & Government
11:39 am
Mon November 17, 2014

Transgender community fights for Elliot-Larsen protections

Rep. Adam Zemke (left) and Amy Hunter
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

Discussions continue at the State Capitol over whether to expand protections offered by Michigan’s Elliot-Larsen anti-discrimination law. That’s the landmark 1976 measure which legally bans discrimination in the state based on religion, race, national origin, age, sex, height, weight, familial and marital status. Several factions have emerged. Democrats and some Republicans appear to be united behind an expansion that would protect lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and transgender persons. Other Republicans favor a measure that would not include trans persons, but include the others.

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