Associated Press

A government panel is scheduled for a briefing on a recent agreement between Michigan officials and the company that operates twin oil pipelines in the Straits of Mackinac. The Michigan Pipeline Safety Advisory Board will discuss the deal during its quarterly meeting Monday in Lansing. 

Gov. Rick Snyder has signed legislation to require that the Michigan Department of Corrections have a policy allowing for the hiring of felons. State law prohibits people convicted of felonies from being employed in the prison agency. It apparently was a reaction to fears over the state hiring felons as corrections officers. 

The legislation, signed Thursday, makes an exception if the job doesn't risk public safety or the operation of the department. An extensive background check and written approval from the department director will be required.

A group of Michigan lawmakers is asking the Environmental Protection Agency to do more to investigate nearly 30 toxic chemical contamination around the state. Eight Republicans and six Democrats signed a letter to the EPA on Tuesday asking the agency to help with the state's response to perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl water pollution.

The remains of a West Michigan man killed when his plane crashed during World War II are coming home. The remains of Navy Airman Albert Rybarczyk of St. Joseph will be flown back to Michigan on Thursday. There will be a full military funeral on Monday and then Rybarczyk will be buried next to his parents at St. Joseph's Resurrection Cemetery. 

Authorities say a 25-year-old man has died after being struck by a vehicle while clearing snow from the driveway of his home in Michigan's northern Lower Peninsula.

The Grand Traverse County sheriff's department says the Kingsley-area man, who was using a snowblower, was struck on Wednesday after a 29-year-old woman lost control of her vehicle. Investigators say wintry road conditions likely were a factor.

The man's name wasn't immediately released. Sheriff's deputies closed the roadway near the home for several hours to conduct their investigation.

Bills advancing in Michigan's Legislature would boost 911 fees that are included in phone bills. The legislation approved 30-6 Wednesday by the Senate goes to the House for consideration next. It would increase a 19-cent monthly state 911 surcharge to 25 cents and let counties raise 42-cent surcharges to 48 cents. 

Surcharges also would rise for prepaid phones.

The bill would boost revenue by $20 million annually and change how the money is distributed for 911 emergency services.

washingtonpost.com

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.
 

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.

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. 

police crime scene tape
Tony Webster via Wikimedia | CC BY 3.0 / Wikimedia.org

Authorities say two people are dead following a five-vehicle crash involving four trucks and a car along Interstate 65 in northern Indiana. Police say a truck driven by a Michigan man was stopped for a crash Tuesday near Lafayette in Tippecanoe County and a truck pulling a flatbed driven by a man from Sherman, Illinois, was stopped behind him along with a car.

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