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State lawmakers push Medicaid work requirements through Senate

The state Legislature moved forward today on a plan to drastically change Michigan’s Medicaid policy. The Senate passed a bill that would add work requirements to Medicaid. If a person is considered able-bodied and doesn’t fit an exception, they would be required to work or go to school for 29 hours a week. Advocates say the bill encourages and helps people find work. Democrats were opposed to the legislation, and before voting, some Democratic Senators offered amendments. Senator Curtis...

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A federal judge has denied a request to order Michigan officials to resume distribution of free bottled water in Flint.
 
     The Flint Journal reports that U.S. District Judge Judith Levy sided with the state, which announced an end to the program on April 6. Tests show Flint is far below the federal action level for lead as it recovers from a lead-contaminated water crisis.
 
     Some residents and Mayor Karen Weaver say bottled water should remain available until home water lines are replaced, a job that will last until 2020.
 

Public school teachers marched through downtown Lansing today. They delivered a petition against guns in schools to the state Capitol.

Today is the anniversary of the Columbine school shooting. Earlier, students walked out of their classrooms. In a show of solidary, hundreds of teachers marched to the Capitol dressed in orange – the color for the anti-gun violence movement.  

   They want stricter gun laws – like tighter background checks. And they don’t want guns in schools – even in teachers’ hands.

Jenni Jones teaches the 4th grade in Grand Rapids.

Grand Valley State University

The Voices of GVSU are hosting their 30th anniversary reunion concert.  The Voices came into play at a crucial time for its founder, Cassonya Carter.  The “Voices” filled some critical voids related to faith, being homesick and for some, not being part of mainstream, college life.

 “natz sound of choir”

“My faith really keeps me rooted and grounded and I found ten other students. We were on the same page they believed in the vision that I had and they joined with me and we started the Voices of GVSU.”

A student who led a two-day demonstration outside of his central Michigan high school this week says it was in response to the unpunished theft of a Confederate battle flag from his pickup truck. Cameron Myers, an 18-year-old senior at Bay City Western High School, told The Associated Press on Thursday that he complained to school officials that someone had cut the large Confederate flag from a pole on his truck, but no one was disciplined. He then took to friends on social media, asking them to fly their own flags outside the school. 

The state of Michigan is defending a decision to cut off free bottled water in Flint, saying tap water now is as "good or better" than in many communities. Attorneys responded Thursday to a request that the state be ordered to resume water distribution. Federal Judge Judith Levy is holding a hearing Friday. Gov. Rick Snyder announced an end to free water on April 6.

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A student who led a two-day demonstration outside of his central Michigan high school this week says it was in response to the unpunished theft of a Confederate battle flag from his pickup truck. Cameron Myers, an 18-year-old senior at Bay City Western High School, told The Associated Press on Thursday that he complained to school officials that someone had cut the large Confederate flag from a pole on his truck, but no one was disciplined. He then took to friends on social media, asking them to fly their own flags outside the school. 

Gina Haspel, the first woman nominated to lead the CIA, has a five-foot-tall poster of Johnny Cash in her office. She's an avid University of Kentucky basketball fan — though she transferred from that school and graduated from the rival University of Louisville. She majored in journalism.

The state of Michigan is defending a decision to cut off free bottled water in Flint, saying tap water now is as "good or better" than in many communities. Attorneys responded Thursday to a request that the state be ordered to resume water distribution. Federal Judge Judith Levy is holding a hearing Friday. Gov. Rick Snyder announced an end to free water on April 6.

Michigan wildlife biologists are postponing a release of sharp-tailed grouse in the western Upper Peninsula because of prolonged wintry weather. The species hasn't been seen regularly in the area since the mid-1990s. Scientists with the Department of Natural Resources had planned to capture about 20 of the birds in the eastern U.P. and turn them loose on the western end, in Ontonagon County.

Classes are canceled at a school district in southern Michigan a day after gunfire apparently from a nearby neighborhood shattered windows of two occupied high school classrooms. No one was injured at Jackson High School in Thursday afternoon's shooting. The Jackson Citizen Patriot reports police say two bullets that hit the school likely came from the area of an apartment complex across the street.

NWS
National Weather Service

The U.S. Geological Survey is reporting a 3.6-magnitude earthquake centered in southern Canada that also was felt in suburban Detroit.

The quake was recorded late Thursday near Amherstburg, Ontario, a town of about 21,900 people.

Jeff Ward of Taylor, Michigan, told the Detroit Free Press he was on his couch watching television when the ground started shaking.

He says a rumbling sound made him think a truck was passing on nearby Interstate 94.

But his understanding changed when the sound continued and the house started shaking.

A few months ago, I wrote a check for $12,000 but couldn't figure out exactly why.

The payment was to secure a place for my mother at Sligo Creek Center, in Takoma Park, Md. It's a nursing home and rehab center owned by Genesis Healthcare.

My mother was about to be discharged from Holy Cross Hospital, in nearby Silver Spring, after a fall. Medicare wouldn't pay for her rehabilitation care.

Africa's last absolute monarch has marked his country's 50th birthday with a rather unconventional gift: a different name. During Golden Jubilee celebrations Thursday, King Mswati III announced that from this point henceforth, the land formerly known as Swaziland is now to be known as the Kingdom of eSwatini.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is levying a $1 billion fine against Wells Fargo — a record for the agency — as punishment for the banking giant's actions in its mortgage and auto loan businesses.

Wells Fargo's "conduct caused and was likely to cause substantial injury to consumers," the agency said in its filings about the bank.

Three former waitresses at Grand Coney Diner in Grand Rapids have filed a federal lawsuit against the company, claiming that complaints of sexual harassment by a shift manager were ignored.

The waitress claim that they faced repeated sexual harassment while waiting tables at Grand Coney. They say, a shift manager there, continuously made sexually inappropriate comments, texted lewd pictures, and then would force the waitresses to erase the messages from their phone when they would show up to work.

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