Current State

9AM and 6PM Weekdays on 90.5 FM | 12PM on AM870

Mid-Michigan's news destination for the informed, the caring and the curious. News and issues, arts and attitudes, and the personalities that make the heart of Michigan beat.

Facebook | Twitter

Genre: 
Composer ID: 
5187f3ece1c8212f45d325c5|5187f3e0e1c8212f45d325a7

Pages

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.

Read more
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.

Read more
Politics & Government
12:06 pm
Mon January 12, 2015

Sales tax foe says funding already there for MI roads fix

Keith Allard
Credit WKAR

On today's show, we heard briefly from Keith Allard of the recently formed group, "Protect MI Taxpayers." Allard is also Chairman of the Grand Rapids Taxpayers Association and a recent unsuccessful candidate for the state legislature. His group is launching a campaign urging voters to defeat the call to increase the state sales tax by a cent. Michigan voters will decide that issue on May 5.

Read more
Environment
12:01 pm
Mon January 12, 2015

Environmentalist claims bill ignores need for biodiversity

Michigan’s new state legislators have been sworn in and are already laying out their priorities for 2015. But there remains some unfinished business from last year’s lame duck legislative session. Among the bills still awaiting Governor Rick Snyder’s signature is one that’s drawing criticism from scientists and environmental groups. Senate Bill 78 would restrict the state’s Department of Natural Resources from considering biodiversity when managing state land.

Read more
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".

Read more
Radio Made in Michigan
12:04 pm
Fri January 9, 2015

Current State #452 | January 9, 2015

Today on Current State: Michigan's switch to the SAT; "Downton Abbey" composer John Lunn; fighting blight in Lansing; and Live Music Friday with guitarist Chris Rollins.

Read more
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.

Read more
Arts & Culture
11:46 am
Fri January 9, 2015

A visit with "Downton Abbey" composer John Lunn

The 'Downton Abbey' cast. The music of John Lunn has become a key component of one of public television's all-time biggest hits.
Credit Courtesy NPR

For those who missed out on Sunday’s Downton Abbey season opener: It’s “advantage Tony” where Mary is concerned; the wily Barrow once again snatched victory from the jaws of defeat; and the surprise star of Season 5/Episode 1 was Moseley’s hair. The runaway PBS hit from England continues to captivate US TV audiences.

Read more
Economy
11:42 am
Fri January 9, 2015

Lansing gets $6-million to fight blight

Ingham County Land Bank executive director Jeff Burdick stands outside a severely blighted vacant home on Lansing's east side. The city of Lansing is using a $6-million federal grant to eliminate blight and help stabilize property values.
Credit Kevin Lavery/WKAR

Now that we’re into the new year, you might be thinking ”I’m ready to give myself a makeover.” It’s not just people who have that impulse. Entire communities plan what they’ll look like in the future, and that often means getting rid of outdated eyesores. That’s a polite description of what cities large and small deal constantly deal with: urban blight. The city of Lansing has recently received a federal grant to eliminate blighted properties.

Read more
Arts & Culture
11:41 am
Fri January 9, 2015

LIVE MUSIC FRIDAY: Chris Rollins | WKAR

Chris Rollins (left) and Lauren Lancaster performing live in WKAR's Studio S.
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

It’s a Live Music Friday again here on Current State, and today, our guest is guitarist Chris Rollins. He’s one of many music instructors and music students who will be at an open house at 3 p.m. Saturday at the Marshall Music School of Music in Lansing.

Read more
Radio Made in Michigan
11:44 am
Thu January 8, 2015

Current State #451 | January 8, 2015

Today on Current State: MSU's updated sexual harassment policy; a preview of Saturday's Lansing Symphony Orchestra concert; an energy efficiency project unites Michigan Energy Options and MSU students; and some top Michigan concerts for 2015.

Read more
Education
11:41 am
Thu January 8, 2015

MSU officials explain new sexual harassment policy

Paulette Granberry Russell
Credit http://www.inclusion.msu.edu/

Sexual assault on college campuses garnered unprecedented attention in 2014, both around the country and here in East Lansing. Last January, President Obama formed a White House task force aimed at improving prevention of and response to rape and sexual assault at colleges and universities. In May, the U.S. Education Department released a list of 55 schools being investigated for their handling of sexual assault cases. Michigan State University was one of those schools.

Read more
Arts & Culture
11:37 am
Thu January 8, 2015

Featured cellist Bion Tsang plays Tchaikovsky’s "Variations on a Rococo Theme" with LSO

LSO conductor Timothy Muffitt
Credit WKAR file photo

The Lansing Symphony Orchestra’s next Masterworks concert is this Saturday at Wharton Center in East Lansing. The program includes works by Haydn, Tchaikovsky and Beethoven.

Read more
Economy
11:34 am
Thu January 8, 2015

MSU students and local non-profit partner on energy efficiency

Credit WKAR Photo

After a mild Christmas, the new year is bringing more wintry conditions to mid-Michigan. The arctic chill makes heating our homes and offices a high priority in our lives. This month, an East Lansing non-profit is launching a pilot program to help dozens of people stay warm this winter and cool next summer.

Read more
Arts & Culture
11:29 am
Thu January 8, 2015

MI MUSIC SCENE: LSJ's Anne Erickson on 2015 concerts

The Duhks will be in East Lansing on Friday, January 16th for the first Ten Pound Fiddle concert of the year.
Credit Flickr - Sooz

Some interesting concerts are coming to Michigan in 2015. Ten Pound Fiddle is starting 2015 with an award-winning group from Canada next week.

Read more
Radio Made in Michigan
11:44 am
Wed January 7, 2015

Current State #450 | January 7, 2015

Today on Current State: Michigan's job prospects for 2015; a new history book on downtown Ann Arbor; Neighbors in Action with D.A.N.C.E, Inc. of Lansing; how long will winter last; and Lansing's John Smoltz is elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Read more
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?

Read more
History
11:35 am
Wed January 7, 2015

New book chronicles visual history of downtown Ann Arbor

Credit http://www.arcadiapublishing.com/

The Arcadia Publishing series of books about cities and towns around Michigan now has a book devoted to the city many in East Lansing think of as its top rival.

Read more
Community
11:33 am
Wed January 7, 2015

Neighbors in Action: D.A.N.C.E, Inc. Lansing | WKAR

It’s Wednesday and time for our Neighbors in Action segment, where we feature people and organizations working to make our community a better place. Today, we learn about a non-profit working to make dance classes affordable for low-income kids in Lansing, Detroit, and Romulus.

Read more
Environment
11:28 am
Wed January 7, 2015

Meteorologist expects no polar vortex repeat

WILX-TV 10 meteorologist Andy Provenzano
Credit http://www.wilx.com/

Much of the Midwest is finally caught in the grip of Old Man Winter. This week brings the lowest Mid-Michigan temperatures since last year’s infamous “polar vortex”. What do the next weeks have in store?

Read more
Sports
11:21 am
Wed January 7, 2015

Hometown hero makes Baseball Hall of Fame

After spending most of his career with Atlanta, Lansing native John Smoltz played for Boston and St. Louis in his final season.
Credit Flickr - Barbara moore

The Baseball Writers Association of America has voted Waverly High School graduate John Smoltz into the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York in his first year of eligibility.

Read more
Radio Made in Michigan
11:18 am
Tue January 6, 2015

Current State #449 | January 6, 2015

Today on Current State: The suspicion-based drug testing of people on public assistance in Michigan; regulating the storage and disposal of coal ash; the historical story of Merze Tate; and Lansing's new comedy club at Tripper's.

Read more
Politics & Government
11:16 am
Tue January 6, 2015

Child advocate wary of suspicion-based drug testing

Gilda Jacobs, with Current State host Mark Bashore
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

Governor Rick Snyder is still making his way through the stack of bills on his desk after lame duck. Among the bills that have already gotten his stamp of approval is one that authorizes suspicion-based drug tests for some welfare recipients. It requires the state to establish pilot programs for screening and testing people on public assistance in three Michigan counties.

Read more
Environment
11:10 am
Tue January 6, 2015

MI environmentalist criticizes new federal coal ash standards

Credit Flickr - UCL Engineering

For years, environmentalists have been calling on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to regulate coal ash. That’s the byproduct of coal that’s produced when it’s burned for electricity. In December, the agency did just that, issuing the first ever federal guidelines about its storage and disposal.

Read more
History
11:06 am
Tue January 6, 2015

MI historian explores life of pioneering African-American scholar

Sonya Bernard Hollins
Credit http://www.michiganhistorylectures.com/

Blanchard, Michigan native Merze Tate remains among our state’s most distinguished citizens. By any measure, she was a trail blazer not only in Michigan but across the U.S. and internationally. Tate was the first African-American graduate of Western Michigan Teachers College and the first African-American woman to attend the University of Oxford.

Read more
Arts & Culture
10:59 am
Tue January 6, 2015

Comedy returns to Lansing's night club scene

Lansing has been without a comedy club since Connxtions closed last April. Over the weekend, a new comedy venue opened up for business at Tripper’s in Frandor. Touring comics will be performing in Lansing every week, bringing laughs to an audience that’s been starved for funny stuff for a while.

Read more
Radio Made in Michigan
12:16 pm
Mon January 5, 2015

Current State #448 | January 5, 2015

Today on Current State: The upcoming vote on funding road repairs in Michigan; breast milk banks; "Station Eleven" author Emily St. John Mandel; and "Current Sports" host Al Martin on the Detroit Lions playoff loss to the Dallas Cowboys.

Read more
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?

Read more
Health
12:10 pm
Mon January 5, 2015

U-M researcher looks to Brazil for breast milk bank ideas

Dr. Lisa Hammer
Credit http://www.mottchildren.org/

You’ve heard of blood banks, tissue banks and organ donation, But are you aware of breast milk banks? Likely not, because they are not widespread in the U.S.

Read more
Arts & Culture
12:09 pm
Mon January 5, 2015

Critically acclaimed novel set in post-apocalyptic Michigan

'Station Eleven' author Emily St. John Mandel
Credit www.emilymandel.com

The novel “Station Eleven” is about a post-apocalyptic world set largely in Michigan. It's the story of a flu epidemic that wipes out almost all of the earth’s human population. The pre-pandemic story is set in Toronto and other places around the world. Michigan, mostly along the Lake Michigan shoreline, is where the story of survivors takes place.

Read more

Pages