Business

Business
11:40 am
Wed May 20, 2015

LSJ reporter on BWL’s settlement with former GM

The Lansing Board of Water and Light's Otto E. Eckert Station.
Credit Wikimedia Commons/Paul R. Kucher

Four months of negotiations between Lansing’s Board of Water and Light and the utility’s former General Manager, Peter Lark, concluded last night.

BWL commissioners agreed unanimously to settle with Mr. Lark for $650,000 after his January dismissal “for cause” by those same commissioners.  A dismissal “for cause” implies employee misconduct.  Current State gets an update from LSJ reporter Steven Reed, who has covered the BWL since the 2013 ice storm that eventually led to yesterday’s agreement.  

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Business
12:44 pm
Tue May 19, 2015

“Two Men” founder to tell her story at Startup Grind event

Two Men and a Truck founder Mary Ellen Sheets
Credit Courtesy Startup Grind Lansing

Few if any Lansing success stories compare with that of Two Men and a Truck. The moving company began in 1985 as an after school endeavor with an advertising budget in a ceramic dish.  Today, founder Mary Ellen Sheets leads a company whose revenue clears $300-million annually. Two Men and a Truck has locations in 39 states and four countries. It has completed roughly five million moves. It also donates about two and a half million dollars in moving services annually.

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Business
11:28 am
Tue May 5, 2015

Businessman from Dubai brings Toastmasters message to EL

Integrity. Respect. Service. Excellence. For its 313,000 members around the world, those are the stated values of International Toastmasters. Toastmasters’ focus is on developing communication and leadership skills in its members.

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Business
11:33 am
Fri April 3, 2015

State chamber CEO in sync with Snyder on RFRA, talent development

There are few issues of public importance in Michigan that the Michigan Chamber of Commerce does not weigh in on. The state chamber is the advocate for businesses and job providers across the state. It assists more than 6,000 member employers, trade associations and local chambers in the legislative, political and legal process.

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Business
11:27 am
Tue March 17, 2015

New LSJ columnist returns to journalistic roots

Judy Putnam (right) of the Lansing State Journal, with Current State guest host Sue Carter.
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

A well-established policy advocate in Lansing is beginning a new chapter in her career this week. Judy Putnam has been the communications director of the Michigan League for Public Policy for seven years. This week, she returns to her roots in journalism as a columnist for the Lansing State Journal.

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Business
11:08 am
Wed March 11, 2015

At MSU, former Missouri Lt. Governor rallies small farmers to fight Big Ag

Joe Maxwell
Credit http://www.humanesociety.org/

Michigan State University has always been known for its strong Agriculture and Natural Resources programs. The university is in the midst of its 100th annual ANR Week, which showcases the sciences of farming and environmental stewardship. One recent conference highlighted farm sustainability into the 21st century.

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Business
11:27 am
Tue March 10, 2015

Seafood Summit explores future of Michigan aquaculture

You might not guess that Michigan is a haven for seafood, since we’re so far from the ocean,  but Michigan has long had thriving commercial fisheries, and aquaculture of fish and shrimp has grown by leaps and bounds in the last thirty years. So, what does the future hold for the state’s seafood industry? That’s the focus of the first annual Michigan Seafood Summit taking place tomorrow at MSU’s Kellogg Conference Center.

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Business
12:40 pm
Fri March 6, 2015

The cubicle wasn’t designed to make you miserable

Credit Flickr - Katy Warner

The cubicle gets a pretty bad rap. The boxy workspace has become almost synonymous with isolation and corporate drudgery. But that’s not what its creator Robert Probst intended when he launched his innovative “Action Office” design in 1964.

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Business
11:49 am
Fri February 27, 2015

“Damned” exhibition eyes new home in Hell (MI)

This sign welcomes visitors to Hell, Michigan.
Credit http://www.gotohellmi.com/

You’ve probably seen the picture come across your Facebook or other social media at some point this winter. A sign that reads “Hell” with icicles hanging off the bottom. Don’t worry, it’s not a sign of the end times, it’s just pointing you in the direction of Hell, Michigan, a small community northwest of Ann Arbor. While Hell might be frozen over, it’s a hot commodity on the real estate market, and for the price of $999,666, you could own a piece of it. But, you’ll have to beat Anthony DVS to do it.

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Business
12:55 pm
Thu February 26, 2015

Passenger rail plan would link Ann Arbor, Traverse City

Credit http://www.mlui.org/

Earlier this month, the Michigan Land Use Institute floated the idea of a new passenger train service from Ann Arbor to Traverse City. It’s a complicated process, but it appears that one of the biggest components is getting people excited about it.

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Business
12:35 pm
Thu February 26, 2015

MI farmers speak out on road funding, ethanol, water use

Credit Wikimedia commons

It’s still too cold for spring planting, but the legislative issues Michigan farmers care most about are heating up again. Yesterday, dozens of crop producers from across the state met in Lansing for the annual Lansing Legislative Seminar, sponsored by the Michigan Farm Bureau. Farmers met in conference sessions to talk about a number of current issues, and many had a chance to speak one on one with their local lawmakers.

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Business
12:53 pm
Mon February 16, 2015

U-M study anticipates impact of driverless cars

Credit Flickr/Department for Transport

Gradually, Ann Arbor is becoming known for a remarkably futuristic technology: the self-driving car.

This spring, work is expected to wrap up on a 32-acre “driverless town” on the outskirts of the city. There, Google and others will be testing vehicles featuring an array of cutting edge technology.  

One goal is a driverless vehicle not only programmed to follow a particular route, but also to avoid all kinds of less predictable developments: mistakes by other drivers, changes in the road surface, weather and so on.

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Business
11:23 am
Tue February 10, 2015

Michigan native takes the helm at National Geographic

National Geographic Editor in Chief Susan Goldberg met with MSU students during a visit to East Lansing this week.
Credit courtesy MSU College of Communication Arts and Sciences

For generations, National Geographic magazine has brought images of the world, both stunning and subtle, to millions of people. It’s parent organization, the National Geographic Society, was founded in 1888 by 33 men whose ranks included John Wesley Powell, the explorer who led a famous expedition to the Grand Canyon in 1869. Today, National Geographic continues its scientific and educational mission in the digital age. Susan Goldberg is the magazine’s editor in chief.

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Business
11:42 am
Thu February 5, 2015

More venture capital driving Michigan startups

Credit Flickr - Keith Cooper

Business watchers in Michigan are heralding some good news in the start-up world. A new report released by the National Venture Capital Association and PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP finds venture capital investment in Michigan was up nearly 100-percent in 2014 from the previous year.

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Business
11:29 am
Mon February 2, 2015

East Lansing tops college football towns

Credit Photo: Melissa Benmark / WKAR

This post-Super Bowl Monday gives the New England Patriots NFL bragging rights for the coming year. But who’s number one in the combined professional and college football world? According to the personal finance-social media network WalletHub, it’s East Lansing.

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Business
11:40 am
Fri January 23, 2015

Detroit Auto Show 2015: Printed cars and Cadillacs

The Local Motors printed car at the Detroit Auto Show.
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

All this week, we’ve been taking you to the Detroit Auto Show to see what’s new, what’s groundbreaking, and what’s just plain fun. On the main floor of the auto show, you can see a massive 3D printer, and it’s printing a car. And if you venture to Hall E in the Cobo Center, you can see the finished product.

Current State's Scott Pohl talks with Lee Herge, Chief Operating Officer of the Chandler, Arizona based Local Motors.

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Business
11:24 am
Thu January 22, 2015

Detroit Auto Show 2015: the transformation of Cobo

New video boards grace the Cobo Center exterior.
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

If you’ve been going to the Detroit Auto Show over the years, you know that Cobo Center has undergone an enormous transformation. A $279-million dollar multi-year renovation is nearing its end. Inside, the changes have included new uses for the former Cobo Hall, the former home of the Detroit Pistons and numerous rock concerts. Fixing Cobo up was crucial to keeping the Auto Show in Detroit, but lots of other convention business is heading to the Motor City as a result.

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Business
11:20 am
Wed January 21, 2015

Detroit Auto Show 2015: the electrics

The Chevy Bolt electric vehicle on display at the Detroit Auto Show.
Credit Mark Bashore/WKAR

The Detroit Auto show is in full swing in downtown Detroit. Two very different automakers are grabbing a lot of the electric vehicle attention at the Cobo Center this week. Current State's Peter Whorf has the latest on the electric cars on display at the North American International Auto Show through Sunday.

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Business
11:47 am
Tue January 20, 2015

Startup Grind Lansing aims to give entrepreneurs a boost

Michael Labriola of Digital Primates is Startup Grind Lansing's first speaker this week.
Credit http://www.digitalprimates.net/

A national organization designed to inspire and educate entrepreneurs is coming to Lansing. It’s called Startup Grind. The Lansing Startup Grind will hold its first meeting on Thursday night. Startup Grind was formed in 2010 and has grown to 150 cities in 65 countries.

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Business
11:35 am
Tue January 20, 2015

New Buick convertible, concept car shown off at Detroit Auto Show

The Buick Cascada is on display at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.
Credit WKAR/Peter Whorf

What’s made in Poland and is named after the Spanish word for waterfall? It’s the newest convertible from Buick, the Cascada, unveiled this week at the Detroit Auto Show. The North American International Auto Show is in full swing at Detroit’s Cobo Center this week. Current  State will bring you all the latest these next few days in our NAIAS series.

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Business
11:40 am
Thu January 15, 2015

Detroit Auto Show 2015: trucks lead the way

The Chevy Colorado is the Motor Trend 2015 Truck of the Year.
Credit WKAR/Peter Whorf

More than one auto writer has taken to calling the Big 3 automakers “truck companies that also make cars”. Trucks and SUVs have become the most successful categories for automakers in recent years, particularly for General Motors and Ford.

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Business
10:06 am
Wed December 24, 2014

Michigan's Christmas tree industry competitive, always changing

Credit Flickr - gerrybuckel

There’s nothing quite like the scent of a freshly cut Douglas fir to put you in the Christmas spirit. Strapping one to the top of your car and taking it home to string with lights and homemade ornaments is a holiday tradition for a lot of families. But Christmas trees aren’t just a place to put the presents under. They’re also a multi-million dollar industry.

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Business
11:55 am
Tue December 2, 2014

New BWL emergency ops manager briefs community leaders on winter plan

Credit Credit Joe Linstroth/WKAR

Mid-Michigan is already getting a taste of winter, no matter what the calendar says. As the weather turns colder, the Lansing Board of Water and Light is preparing for the possibility of power outages.

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Business
11:51 am
Wed November 12, 2014

Lansing art deco landmark reopens Thursday

The Knapp’s Centre is on the corner of South Washington Square and Washtenaw Street in Lansing.
Credit www.eyde.com

An historic corner in downtown Lansing has been revitalized. Tomorrow is the grand re-opening of the Knapp's Centre. The event caps a $36-million redevelopment of the five-story art deco structure, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

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Business
11:13 am
Mon November 10, 2014

More changes ahead for LSJ staff, readers

Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

Technological change is continually reshaping the media landscape. It’s been forcing those of us in the media to adopt new ways of communicating news and information. That evolution has been especially challenging in the newspaper world. While publishers are hopeful that modest rises in online advertising and revenue will continue, a multi-year trend of overall declining ad revenue continues. According to the Pew Research Journalism Project, it dropped another 2.6-percent in 2013 compared to the previous year.

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Business
11:28 am
Mon November 3, 2014

Audio Postcard: Harvest time in Michigan | WKAR

Zach Rappleye farms 1,800 acres of corn and soybeans near Jackson. Many farmers in southern Michigan experienced a cooler and wetter summer than normal, which pushed back the harvest. Rappleye says he hopes to finish by mid-December.
Credit Kevin Lavery/WKAR

Orange and yellow are the colors of the season across mid-Michigan, as the fall harvest continues. After a bone-chilling winter, many areas of the Lower Peninsula saw a cooler and wetter summer than usual. Some farmers are racing the clock to harvest corn and soybeans and plant winter wheat.

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Business
1:13 pm
Wed October 29, 2014

GM, suppliers expanding Lansing area operations

GM's Lansing Grand River Assembly Plant
Credit Flickr - Betsy Weber

General Motors is making news in Michigan this week. The Detroit automaker is planning a $40-million investment at its transmission plant in Warren to build the new drivetrain for the next generation of the Chevrolet Volt. The announcement is the latest in a string of high-profile plans G-M has unveiled this year. Those include assembly plant expansions in the Lansing area.

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Business
11:07 am
Wed August 27, 2014

BWL's Lark responds to complaints, updates reforms

Lansing Board of Water and Light General Manager J. Peter Lark
Credit WKAR

After months of repercussions stemming from December’s ice storm and power outages that affected thousands of people, the Lansing Board of Water and Light continues to generate headlines. Some customers complain of overly aggressive tree trimming by the city-owned utility. Others question the justification for a proposed rate hike. In June, the BWL Board appeared to violate the state’s Open Meetings Act.

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Business
11:05 am
Wed August 27, 2014

Neighbors in Action: Peckham's Next Step Program

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 Next Step Program at Peckham, the vocational rehabilitation non-profit. The program offers individualized services and support for 18-21 year olds who have a prior juvenile record.

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Business
12:21 pm
Tue August 26, 2014

MSU study looks at gender and 'image management'

An MSU study looked at how women should present themselves in job interviews for traditionally male-dominated fields.
Credit Flickr/Steve Wilson

    

Say you’re a woman, and  you’re interviewing for a job in a traditionally male-dominated field like engineering. What qualities about yourself should you highlight in your interview? A new MSU study offers some ideas.

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