Gov. Rick Snyder: Upgrading Soo Locks crucial

Jun 18, 2018

Michigan has formally pledged its $50 million commitment to upgrading the Soo Locks in a letter sent last Friday to President Trump. Co-authored by Governor Rick Snyder, the letter argues that upgrading the Soo Locks with a sense of urgency is critical, as the regional and national economy would suffer if the Locks were to unexpectedly shut down.

In addition, a halt to the Soo Locks would result in “devastating impacts” to Michigan’s steel and manufacturing industries, putting 11 million jobs at risk.

The annual fireworks over the Detroit River is marking its 60th year of lighting up the skyline of Detroit and neighboring Windsor, Ontario.

The theme for the June 25 Ford Fireworks extravaganza is "Come Alive in the D!"

The 24-minute show will feature more than 10,000 pyrotechnic effects visible for miles along the Detroit River. It's produced by The Parade Co. and Dearborn-based Ford Motor Co. has been the title sponsor since 2013.

Leaders from more than 70 communities across the United States and Canada are expected to attend a conference in Detroit to discuss efforts to end chronic homelessness and homelessness among U.S. military veterans.

National nonprofit Community Solutions is hosting the June 26-27 event at Cobo Center.

Its part of the Built for Zero campaign. Community Solutions says Detroit is one of the cities participating in the campaign.

Battle Creek officials have lifted a drinking water advisory they'd issued after elevated levels of manganese were found in the water last week.

The order to lift the advisory was issued Saturday and was approved by the Calhoun County Department of Public Health and Michigan Department of Environmental Quality and Health and Human Services.

Children's Protective Services in a western Michigan county is changing its oversight policy after the death of a baby who was left alone for two days strapped in a car seat inside his home.

The Kent County agency will now require a higher-level manager to sign off on caseworker decisions involving families with more than one prior case.

The change follows the death of Noah Johnson last year. An autopsy found that the 6-month-old had a diaper rash and had been dead for some time before his mother, Lovily Johnson, brought the infant's lifeless body to the hospital.

Michigan's Energy Office is hosting a forum and panel discussions on electric vehicles.

The event is scheduled Wednesday at the Michigan Agency for Energy in Lansing. It will include a ride-and-drive of several electric vehicle models and a workplace charging demonstration.

Panelists will talk about electric vehicle fleets and electric vehicle use by the public. Organizations also will share their experiences with electric vehicle fleets and charging.

The forum is sponsored by Midwest EVOLVE and Greater Lansing Area Clean Cities.

Field Notes in Philanthropy: This One Counts

Jun 18, 2018

Episode 5: This One Counts

The 2020 U.S. Census is at a “high risk” for failure, according to the Government Accountability Office (GAO). Given that the decennial Census is how our government divvies up Congressional representatives, federal program dollars, and a host of other assets, a failed Census could spell chaos for our country. And for the nonprofit sector.

Philanthropy has played a key role in previous censuses, providing the resources and know-how to mobilize community groups, neighbors, and businesses to help ensure an accurate count. Perla Ni, founder and CEO of the Census Outreach Project, and Kyle Caldwell, Executive Director of the Johnson Center for Philanthropy, join the hosts to talk about what nonprofits can do this time around.

Isle Royale sees fewer visitors every year than Yellowstone gets in a day. The park is a three-hour ferry ride from the Upper Peninsula. But humans aren’t the only visitors having trouble reaching the island

There were only two wolves recorded on the island last year. In the next four or five months, park officials will begin an effort to bring that number up. The goal is to transport 20 or 30 new wolves to the island within the next five years.

Michigan State University Interim President John Engler is under fire for emails he exchanged with an aide about victims of Larry Nassar. Nassar is the former M-S-U sports doctor who sexually assaulted his patients for years.

       Members of the university’s governing board want Engler to resign.

In emails obtained by the Chronical of Higher Education, Engler says a Nassar survivor is probably receiving a “kickback” from lawyers. Hundreds of Nassar survivors are suing the university. Engler also says survivors are being manipulated by trial lawyers.

Enbridge Energy has submitted a report to the state on possible alternatives to continuing to run an oil and gas pipeline on the bottomlands of the Straits of Mackinac.

       Neither of the alternatives would shut down the line.

Shutting down the line is what environmental groups are calling for. Enbridge has proposed digging a tunnel 100 feet below the bottom of the straits, or encasing Line 5 in a trench covered with concrete and stone.