Current State

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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.

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Environment
2:36 pm
Fri June 13, 2014

Michigan may authorize new uses for toxic coal ash

Coal ash is the byproduct generated by coal-fired electric power plants. It's commonly mixed with concrete as a road construction filler, and it's also sometimes spread on farm fields. Some studied have linked coal ash exposure to lung cancer.
Credit Flickr Creative Commons / CheshireCat@TO

One of the bills that cleared the Michigan legislature this session was a provision that allows certain bio-waste materials to be re-used for beneficial purposes. These substances include things like cement kiln dust, wood pulp and coal ash. Coal ash is the leftover residue from coal burned by electric power plants.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:19 pm
Thu June 12, 2014

Current State #331 | June 12, 2014

Today on Current State: the state Senate works on road funding; the technology of asphalt; the Grand American Fish Rodeo; beer with Richard Branson; and mead made in Michigan. 

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Politics & Government
1:16 pm
Thu June 12, 2014

After marathon session, MI senate takes final shot at road funding

Credit Flickr - lehooper

The Michigan Senate struggled late into the night Wednesday, working on a comprehensive road funding measure.

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Politics & Government
1:10 pm
Thu June 12, 2014

Michigan roads: Is the solution in the asphalt?

Consultant Rahn Bentley explains how asphalt cement is blended with crushed rocks and other aggregates to form road pavement. Lansing Asphalt in Delta Township heats the mix to more than 300 degrees Fahrenheit and can produce up to 400 tons of asphalt each hour.
Credit Kevin Lavery/WKAR

The $1-billion road funding package that Michigan lawmakers have been struggling to pass in the final days of the session failed to achieve consensus last night. As of this morning, the Michigan Senate will have just a few hours to try to cobble together  a plan to raise the revenue to fix the state’s roads.

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Lifestyle & Recreation
1:08 pm
Thu June 12, 2014

Fish Rodeo takes over the Grand River

Credit grandamericanfishrodeo.com

Dr. Kirk Heinze is host of the regular feature “Greening of the Great Lakes” on WKAR’s MSU Today. Some of those conversations make their way to Current State. In a recent segment, Heinze spoke with Terry Terry, co-founder and president of the Michigan Institute for Contemporary Art and organizer of the new Grand American Fish Rodeo. The Lansing event takes place this today through Saturday at Adado Riverfront Park.

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Business
1:06 pm
Thu June 12, 2014

Social media helps Michigan entrepreneur land beer with Branson

Credit BeerwithBranson.com

We’ve all heard of 6 degrees of separation, the idea that everyone in the world is connected through links of acquaintances. Bugsy Sailor  believes that with social media, the degrees separating people are even smaller.

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Business
12:42 pm
Thu June 12, 2014

Michigan brewer part of mead "renaissance"

One of the offerings from the B. Nektar Meadery, Kill All the Golfers.
Credit Aaron Young/WKAR

Michigan is quietly carving out a place in the world of mead. Mead is an alcoholic beverage brewed from honey. Just like wine, it can be sweet or dry. It can be carbonated or still.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:06 pm
Wed June 11, 2014

Current State #330 | June 11, 2014

Today on Current State: reform in juvenile justice laws; the Pontiac Silverdome auction; the politics of the World Cup; and Neighbors in Action: Hometown Housing Partnership.

Politics & Government
1:05 pm
Wed June 11, 2014

Report denounces 'outdated' juvenile justice laws

'Youth Behind Bars' co-author by Michelle Weemhoff thinks current juvenile justice laws do more harm than good.
Credit miccd.org

“Michigan’s outdated approach to youth justice does little to rehabilitate children, protect public safety or wisely invest taxpayer dollars.” This quote is among the provocative conclusions of a new report, co-authored by Michelle Weemhoff and her organization the Michigan Council on Crime and Delinquency.

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Business
1:03 pm
Wed June 11, 2014

Picking apart the Silverdome

This forklift is one of the thousands of items being auctioned off at the Pontiac Silverdome.
Credit RJM Auctioneers

The Pontiac Silverdome hosted the Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, the Who, the Pope, Wrestlemania, a Super Bowl, and of course, the Detroit Pistons and the Detroit Lions. Largely unused since the Lions moved back to downtown Detroit, the Silverdome was sold in 2009 to the Triple Investment Group for about a half-million dollars. Now its assets are going up for auction.

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Sports
12:52 pm
Wed June 11, 2014

Beyond sport, the underlying politics of the World Cup

The World Cup kicks off tomorrow in Brazil.
Credit Flickr - Anderson Vaz

Once every four years, hundreds of millions of soccer fans get swept up in the excitement of the World Cup.  The month-long spectacle begins play tomorrow in Brazil.

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Business
12:50 pm
Wed June 11, 2014

Neighbors in Action: Hometown Housing Partnership

East Lansing based Hometown Housing Partnership attempts to lower the barriers to home-ownership.
Credit http://www.hometownhousing.org/

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 feature the Hometown Housing Partnership, an East Lansing based organization that promotes homeownership and offers financial assistance to homebuyers.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:46 pm
Tue June 10, 2014

Current State #329 | June 10, 2014

Today on Current State: Senator Rick Jones on road funding; the future of aquaculture in Michigan; MSU's Summer Circle Theatre; and Michigan summer tourism.

Politics & Government
12:45 pm
Tue June 10, 2014

Senator Jones on competing road funding proposals

Sen. Rick Jones (R-Grand Ledge)
Credit www.senatorrickjones.com

    

The Michigan legislature’s summer break begins after business on Thursday. That’s meant an important surge of activity this week to finish a new state budget and to further address one of the state’s biggest issues, road funding.

Current State welcomes Republican Senator Rick Jones of Grand Ledge to update these and other legislative news, including his measure that would amend Michigan law on strip searches.

Environment
12:40 pm
Tue June 10, 2014

Does Michigan have a future in aquaculture?

Diana says history, regulations and foreign competition could be at fault for the small size of U.S. aquaculture.
Credit Flickr - Bytemarks

Aquaculture is one of the fastest growing food production systems. But in the U.S., aquaculture remains a relatively small industry, used solely to grow aquatic plants or produce fish for stocking.

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Arts & Culture
12:33 pm
Tue June 10, 2014

Summer Circle Theater building a permanent home

Lela Ivey and Mark Schenfisch star in the MSU Summer Circle Theatre production of 'What I Did Last Summer'.
MSU Department of Theatre

This week the Summer Circle Theatre at Michigan State University is entering its 54th season, putting on student productions of plays outdoors around the MSU Auditorium and Fairchild Theatre. This summer marks a change for the company as it will be the last season of its nomadic existence. Work has begun on a permanent home for Summer Circle.

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Lifestyle & Recreation
12:16 pm
Tue June 10, 2014

Despite intense winter, Michigan tourism warming up

Michigan summer tourism remains unaffected by cold waters.
Credit Flickr - Kristy

Michigan had one of the most brutal winters it has ever seen, and unfortunately its impacts are still lingering.  As people begin to plan their summer travels, there may be some residual effects from this winter.

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Radio Made in Michigan
11:32 am
Mon June 9, 2014

Current State #328 | June 9, 2014

Today on Current State: Ingham County Drain Commissioner Pat Lindemann; Moviemaking in Michigan, with producer Richard Jewell; Richard Gilbert on his memoir "Shepherd"; and a Lansing Symphony Orchestra 2014-15 season preview.

Environment
11:30 am
Mon June 9, 2014

Drain Commissioner Lindemann on clean water challenges, opportunities

Ingham County Drain Commissioner Pat Lindemann
Credit Stacy Hoxsey / WKAR-MSU

Pat Lindemann has served as the Drain Commissioner of Ingham County for 21 years. He's a Lansing native who’s spent his entire life in the area. As Drain Commissioner, Lindemann’s responsible for the operation of Ingham County storm drains and related issues including lake levels and soil erosion.

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Arts & Culture
11:21 am
Mon June 9, 2014

Moviemaking in Michigan: A producer's role on a small-budget film

Richard Jewell is producing the film 'Eastern Market'.
Credit Courtesy - Richard D. Jewell

Current State’s Scott Pohl is following the production of a movie in Michigan. He’s back with our latest installment on the team that’s putting together the Detroit-based film “Eastern Market”.

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Lifestyle & Recreation
11:19 am
Mon June 9, 2014

Memoir explores couple's pursuit of agrarian dream

Credit Michigan State University Press

A new memoir from the MSU Press looks at what happens when a professional couple decides to get in touch with their agrarian dream of life in the country. Richard Gilbert teaches writing at Otterbein College in a suburb of Columbus, Ohio. He’s the author of “Shepherd”.

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Music
11:18 am
Mon June 9, 2014

LSO preview: new season offers Choral Fantasy, Tchaikovsky and Beethoven

Credit Flickr - Alice Carrier

The Lansing Symphony Orchestra and music director Timothy Muffitt recently announced their 2014-15 season. Current State's Peter Whorf speaks with Lansing State Journal classical music writer Ken Glickman for a preview.

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History
12:01 am
Fri June 6, 2014

Michigan Remembers D-Day: Today's Generation Honors the Greatest Generation

The B-17 bomber "Yankee Lady" is housed at what remains of the Willow Run bomber plant near Ypsilanti. The Yankee Air Museum is planning to move into the space once it's refurbished.
Kevin Lavery WKAR

On June 6, 1944, more than 160, 000 Allied forces traversed the English Channel to land on the beaches of Normandy in France.  Operation Overlord, commonly known as "D-Day," was the largest seaborne invasion in history.  The offensive marked the beginning of the end of World War II in Europe.

WKAR is proud to honor the sacrifice of all veterans, living and dead, who gave of themselves to restore freedom and hope to a war-torn world.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:16 pm
Fri May 30, 2014

Current State #327 | May 30, 2014

Today on Current State: Lansing Schools superintendent Yvonne Caamal Canul; teaching first aid for mental health; a Mackinac conference wrap-up; and our live Friday Music Series features The Spragues and the Pumpstock Music Festival.

Education
1:13 pm
Fri May 30, 2014

Lansing Schools superintendent on budget, arts ed, and future of Eastern

Eastern High School is Lansing's oldest remaining high school building.
Credit Flickr- New City One

The Lansing School District is facing a projected $6-million budget deficit next year. The school board has authorized privatization of the district’s bus system and the layoffs of up to 95 employees.

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Health
1:08 pm
Fri May 30, 2014

Teaching first aid for mental health

Credit http://www.ceicmh.org/

For decades, organizations like the American Red Cross and local fire departments have offered courses in basic first aid. Many Americans who are not in the medical field have a working knowledge of how to perform CPR. But few people are trained to give mental health first aid. That’s the aim of an ongoing training series being held this summer in Lansing.

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Politics & Government
1:08 pm
Fri May 30, 2014

Mackinac wrap-up: Land/Peters, Detroit, LGBT rights

Governor Snyder at the 2014 Mackinac Policy Conference.
Credit Flickr- Detroit Regional Chamber

The 2014 Detroit Regional Chamber Conference on Mackinac Island is winding down. The Michigan Public Radio Network’s Rick Pluta has been there for the duration and he provides us with a recap of what has been a fairly eventful conference.

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Music
1:07 pm
Fri May 30, 2014

LIVE MUSIC: The Spragues and Pumpstock Music Festival

The Spragues perform live in WKAR's Studio S on Current State.
Credit WKAR/Aaron Young

Saturday, June 7th is the date of the fifth annual Pumpstock Music Festival. The annual gathering in East Lansing’s Bailey Park features live American roots music and local food.

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Radio Made in Michigan
2:33 pm
Thu May 29, 2014

Current State #326 | May 29, 2014

Today on Current State: Congressman John Dingell on 58 years in D.C.; exhibit celebrates 125 years of local innovation; living with a severe mental illness; and finding balance in Lake Huron's fisheries.

Politics & Government
2:32 pm
Thu May 29, 2014

Michigan's iron man: Congressman Dingell on 58 years in D.C.

Congressman Dingell in the 112th Congress.
Credit Flickr-dingellmi15

Congressman John Dingell holds the record as America’s longest serving elected official, representing Michigan’s 12th district since 1955. He has served 21,000 days during which he cast 25,000 votes, alongside 11 U.S. Presidents. 

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