business

Economy
11:12 am
Mon December 8, 2014

MI retailers push for sales tax fairness

Many online retailers, like Amazon, don't collect the state sales tax from customers in Michigan.
Credit Flickr - Carl Malamud

Last week we learned that e-commerce sales on Cyber Monday 2014 topped $2-billion. That’s up more than 15-percent over last year. Big box giant Walmart and online powerhouse Amazon saw sizeable surges in their bottom lines. But the reports are not welcome news for everyone, including traditional brick and mortar retailers in Michigan.

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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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Economy
11:52 am
Thu November 20, 2014

MI manufacturing industry seeks to close skills gap

Credit www.camw.org/

The Lansing area, like much of Michigan, has been shaped by manufacturing. But the industry has taken a beating in the past 13 years. The state has lost hundreds of thousands of manufacturing jobs since 2001. After years of cuts, though, the industry is starting to make a comeback here in mid-Michigan.

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Economy
11:45 am
Thu November 20, 2014

Cadillac unveils Lansing-built ATS-V at LA Auto Show

Cadillac's new ATS-V will be built at the Lansing Grand River Assembly Plant.
Credit Courtesy © General Motors

Cadillac has unveiled the next model that General Motors will build in Lansing. GM is showing off the new ATS-V at the Los Angeles Auto Show this week.

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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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Education
10:27 am
Mon September 15, 2014

MSU student builds support for new intern protections

Credit www.miepic.org

In more and more career tracks, from sales to journalism to finance, an internship is required for young and new employees looking to break in. And following this trend, more colleges are now mandating internships as part of their degree requirements. But many of these internships are unpaid, which leaves these workers at the bottom of the pecking order with few workplace protections, including from a boss’s inappropriate advances and unwanted attention.

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Economy
11:36 am
Tue September 9, 2014

Lansing-made Cadillacs to feature vehicle-to-vehicle technology

The 2017 Cadillac CTS will be enabled with vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communication technology.
Credit gm.com

The 2014 World Congress on Intelligent Transport Systems in Detroit heard a keynote address on Sunday from General Motors CEO Mary Barra, in which she announced how GM plans to integrate automated driving technology into Cadillacs in a couple of years.

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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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Business
12:21 pm
Tue August 12, 2014

After delay, new EL transportation hub on track for 2015

The new East Lansing hub is projected to open by Fall 2015.
Credit Flickr - Matt Katzenberger

Just off the MSU campus, demolition crews are preparing to raze the first in a series of buildings to make way for a new multi-modal transportation center. The 40-year-old Amtrak depot will eventually come down and be replaced with a larger facility that can handle train, bus and even taxi traffic.

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Politics & Government
12:14 pm
Tue August 12, 2014

Michigan Supreme Court ruling could cost state $1 billion

If the Michigan Supreme Court does not reconsider the decision, then the state legislature will likely find a way to make sure the estimated $1 billion is not lost, says Rick Pluta.
Credit Flickr - Justin Rumao

One billion dollars. That’s the amount the state could lose because of a July ruling by the Michigan Supreme Court, according to the Treasury Department.

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Business
12:11 pm
Tue August 12, 2014

Riding along with Uber in Lansing

Uber is Jeremy Kittle's first experience as a taxi driver. Kittle says he enjoys the scheduling flexibility and innovation the service provides.
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

The ride-sharing service called Uber has been in the Lansing-East Lansing market for a couple of weeks now. Current State’s Scott Pohl took a ride with Uber driver Jeremy Kittle to learn about the new service from both the rider and the driver's point of view.

Business
12:12 pm
Wed August 6, 2014

Legwork powers green Lansing business

Lansing's Go Green Trikes has even facilitated an apartment move with their green delivery service.
Credit WKAR/Peter Whorf

On last April’s Earth Day, the Lansing company Go Green Trikes launched its all-electric vehicle local delivery service. Go Green Trikes is the brainchild of Yvonne LeFave. She joined us on Current State’s Neighbors in Action segment this past spring to talk about her Earth-friendly service.

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Business
11:34 am
Mon July 28, 2014

Ypsilanti offers cautionary tale on GM tax breaks

GM's Delta Township Plant
Credit Flickr - _salguod

Last Friday, General Motors announced plans for a $37-million expansion of its Delta Township auto production plant. GM will ask the city of Lansing for a tax incentive package to help finance the project. The company will make its initial request to the Lansing City Council this evening.

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Business
12:51 pm
Mon July 14, 2014

From farm to cocktail: New Lansing distillery to source locally

Credit Flickr - cyclonebill

As Michigan-made brews are flowing from taps all over the state this summer, a game-changer in the micro-brewing business is underway right here in Lansing. American Fifth Spirits aims to offer a variety of micro-distilled liquor to the Lansing community, as well as a historical milestone: it’s Lansing’s first distillery ever.

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Business
1:14 pm
Thu July 3, 2014

Bigger fireworks, bigger safety concerns

American Eagle Super Store is one of the Midwest's largest fireworks retailers.
Kevin Lavery/WKAR

We’re celebrating Independence Day as a nation tomorrow, and that means fireworks. Michigan relaxed its fireworks sales law in 2012, so there are now more roadside stands and large retailers hawking their wares.

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Arts & Culture
2:21 pm
Wed June 25, 2014

Hats off to Michigan-made Stormy Kromers

The Stormy Kromer draws a crowd of unique and devoted visitors to its store in Ironwood, Michigan.
Credit Courtesy of Stormy Kromer

While many of us are enjoying summer after this year’s long and harsh winter, others are using the season to prepare for the coming cold.

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Business
1:10 pm
Tue June 17, 2014

BWL Commissioner supports extension for GM Lark

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

The discussion over reforms to the Lansing Board of Water and Light has continued in recent days. One topic up for debate is whether or not to extend the contract of embattled General Manager J. Peter Lark. A BWL committee has recommended another year for Lark. However, some critics have repeated their view that Lark should leave after the utility’s botched response to last December’s widespread, storm-related power outages.

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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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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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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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Business
12:19 pm
Wed May 28, 2014

Volunteers enlisted to protect state from cybercrime

Lohrmann says that the need for an emergency response team was at the center of the Corps' creation.
Credit Flickr - marsmet tallahassee

Anyone who ever uses a computer gets hit now and then with e-mail spam or the occasional computer virus. Many are just minor hassles that try to derail our plans, but some do cause significant damage. Now imagine how often large companies and government agencies get hacked by those seeking to inflict harm. To address this, the state of Michigan is creating an all volunteer defense team, the Cyber Civilian Corps.

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Business
2:10 pm
Mon April 28, 2014

Fading down the back stretch: Michigan horse racing industry struggles to keep up

Mike Stommen of Hazel Park Raceway says you can come to the racetrack and study horses' past performances and 'make your own luck.'
WKAR/Kevin Lavery

Horse racing fans around the country are gearing up for the Kentucky Derby next Saturday. The storied run that kicks off the quest for the Triple Crown will bring thousands of people to Michigan’s three horse tracks. Many will place their bets as they watch the Derby via simulcast. They’ll also come to cheer on local horses and riders who come to the tracks to test their mettle.

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Business
12:40 pm
Mon April 21, 2014

BWL ice storm report delayed again

Louney attributes delays to a desire by the Community Review Team to dig deeper into the issue.
Credit Joe Linstroth/WKAR

There will been another delay in the release of the report reviewing the response of the Lansing Board of Water and Light to last December’s huge ice storm.

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Business
12:23 pm
Mon April 21, 2014

Entrepreneur rolls out green, three-wheeled delivery service

Yvonne LeFave says she decided to launch her business because she wanted to show people what's possible.
Credit Courtesy of Go Green Trikes

A new eco-friendly business will hit the ground peddling tomorrow. Go Green Trikes will employ electric-assisted bikes  to make deliveries in the greater Lansing area.

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Business
1:58 pm
Fri April 18, 2014

Saranac syrup-maker sticks to tradition

Last year, John Smith produced 361 gallons of maple syrup, compared to 250 gallons this year.
Credit Flickr - Wigwam Jones

As you drive west from Ionia, Michigan, you’ll come to the little town of Saranac. Its streets are lined with a bountiful number of large old maple trees. And this time of year, it’s not uncommon to see many of them with pails and spouts attached to collect sap for maple syrup.

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Economy
1:14 pm
Thu April 10, 2014

New MSU project expected to help create thousands of Michigan jobs

The Food Processing and Innovation Center is raising the funding for the estimated $5.5 million project. It’s expected to consist of a mix of federal and state dollars, along with a commitment from MSU and five industry partners. It will be located on Hewlett Road.
Credit Courtesy - Michigan State University


There are plans to build a new center here at MSU that, if realized, proponents say could have a substantial economic impact on the state of Michigan, including the creation of potentially thousands of new jobs. Current State's Joe Linstroth talked with Chris Peterson, an agricultural economist and the head of MSU’s Product Center, who says there are more than 600 mid-sized food processors in the state of Michigan. Many of these companies’ facilities are maxed out, meaning that if they want to create a new product, they don’t have the capacity to test the product or its manufacturing and packaging techniques to see if it’s economically viable.

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