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Inner City Christian Federation securing affordable housing

Inner City Christian Federation has closed on the purchase of 177 properties with 150 of those single-family homes located in Greater Grand Rapids and Wyoming. As ICCF leadership explains the acquisition is one way to preserve affordable housing at a time when rents and home prices are quickly climbing. “We are excited to be a part of preserving the affordability of housing in our community.” Ryan VerWys is President and CEO of Inner City Christian Federation. “We know right now that folks...

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John Conyers' resignation from the U.S. House amid sexual harassment allegations unlocks the seat he's held for more than a half-century.
 
     That could set off a free-for-all race to replace him, with at least three potential legacy candidates, including two Conyers' relatives and a son of a prominent former mayor.
 
     Gov. Rick Snyder will schedule special primary and general elections to fill the vacancy left by Conyers' resignation.
 

Governor Rick Snyder is personally lobbying lawmakers to adopt an overhaul of how local government pensions are managed.

Snyder is a CPA/investor turned politician, and he’s had his eye for a while on making sure local pension and retirement plans are better funded. The plan proposed by Snyder and the Legislature’s GOP leaders would allow the state to intervene if a local government has a retirement plan that’s under-funded with no plan to fix it.

   Snyder wants the Legislature to deal with the bills before its winter break.

Michigan could end up being the only state where legislators pass and reject laws without the public knowing about their personal finances. It's a distinction good government watchdogs say is an embarrassment that must be changed. Forty-seven states require lawmakers to file some type of financial disclosure that lists their occupation, income or business associations - information that indicates if a legislator might benefit personally from supporting or opposing legislation.

Michigan capitol building
Michigan Senate / www.senate.michigan.gov

Parents could use tax-free savings accounts to pay for students' school-related expenses including extracurricular activities under legislation that has cleared a divided Michigan Senate. The Republican-led chamber approved the bills 23-14 Tuesday, with Democrats and some Republicans in opposition. The legislation goes to the House for consideration next. 

A judge has ordered a 62-year-old hunter safety instructor to stand trial on a lesser charge in the fatal shooting of a 13-year-old boy who was squirrel hunting in western Michigan. Roger Hoeker of Jenison was charged with involuntary manslaughter, but 78th District Court Judge H. Kevin Drake this week sent the case to circuit court on a charge of reckless discharge of a firearm. 

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We are reporting today on the Supreme Court's 6-3 decision to uphold the nationwide subsidies called for in the Affordable Care Act. One of the three justices who opposed the ruling was Justice Antonin Scalia, who issued a strong dissent.

Here are some highlights:

'SCOTUSCare'

Supreme Court Upholds Obamacare Subsidies

Jun 25, 2015

The Affordable Care Act survived its second Supreme Court test in three years, raising odds for its survival but by no means ending the legal and political assaults on it five years after it became law.

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Updated at 1 p.m. ET

The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday handed the Obama administration a major victory on health care, ruling 6-3 that nationwide subsidies called for in the Affordable Care Act are legal.

"Congress passed the Affordable Care Act to improve health insurance markets, not to destroy them," the court's majority said in the opinion, which was written by Chief Justice John Roberts. But they acknowledged that "petitioners' arguments about the plain meaning ... are strong."

In the Medieval era, kings and queens hosted feasts adorned with surprisingly complex edible sculptures depicting humans and animals alike. Outside the castle walls, of course, people struggled to put enough food on the table — much less, worry about its presentation afterward. But in the modern United States, food sculpture is the art of the people. Nowhere is this truer than the butter sculptures so common at Midwestern state fairs.

The giant ostrich-like rhea, despite its largely useless vestigial wings, seems to be something of a flight risk.

Last year, we brought you the story of one of the birds — native to South America — that escaped from a farm in the U.K., startling cyclists and otherwise wreaking mayhem in the English countryside.

For the past 20 years, doctors have recommended that dialysis patients have a simple operation to make it safer and easier to connect to a machine that cleans their blood.

Islamic State fighters, who were ousted from the Kurdish border town of Kobani in January, have launched an offensive to recapture the Syrian city — setting off car bombs as a prelude to an attack, NPR's Deborah Amos reports.

Mourners will gather in South Carolina on Thursday for the funerals of the Rev. Sharonda Coleman-Singleton and Ethel Lance, two of the nine people who were killed during a Bible study meeting in Charleston last week.

Both Coleman-Singleton, 45, and Lance, 70, were integral members of Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church, where police say a white gunman attacked last week with the stated intention of killing black people. The case is being investigated as a hate crime.

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