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Tue February 2, 2010
State Capitol prepares for SoS protestors
By Rick Pluta, Michigan Public Radio Network
LANSING, MI –
Security will be tighter than normal at the state Capitol Wednesday evening. More than a thousand protestors are expected when Governor Granholm delivers her State of the State address.
The managers responsible for safety and security at the Capitol say there will be more precautions than usual because an unusually large number of protestors is expected. A tea party group; students opposed to eliminating the Michigan Promise college scholarship; and protestors demanding a moratorium on home foreclosures have all reserved space on the Capitol lawn.
Steve Benkovsky is the executive director of the Michigan Capitol Committee. He says a State of the State address typically draws between 50 and 500 protestors. This year, he's expecting a crowd of 1,000 to 1,200.
"This is a little larger than usual," he says.
Benkovsky says the Capitol building will be closed to anyone who does not have a ticket to attend the speech. He says allowing another thousand people in would pose a threat if there were a fire or some other emergency.