Rick Pluta

Straits of Mackinac
Gregory Varnum via Wikimedia | CC BY 3.0 / wikimedia.org

Michigan’s energy chief says damage to the protective coating on an oil and gas pipeline that runs beneath the Straits of Mackinac was worse than initially reported.

Valerie Brater directs the Michigan Agency for Energy. She says Enbridge Energy initially reported small sections of Line Five’s protective coating were accidentally worn off down to the metal while underwater safety anchors were being installed.

Brater says the places where metal is showing are much larger than Enbridge said they were, and she says company was too slow to repair the damage.

Michigan Supreme Court
Subterranean via Wikimedia | CC BY 3.0 / wikimedia.org

  

The Michigan Supreme Court has agreed to decide whether prosecutors can force elected lawmakers to give up their seats as part of a plea deal. That decision won’t come in time to determine whether a former state senator should be removed from the November ballot.

detroitnews.com

Republican Congressman Dave Trott says he will not seek reelection next year and will retire after four years in Congress.

   Trott says he always intended for his congressional career to be brief.

abcnews.com

Michigan Supreme Court Justice Joan Larsen faced members of the US Senate today  as she seeks a promotion to the federal bench.

   Larsen said she’s beholden to the rule of law and not the president who nominated her.

President Trump named Larsen to the Sixth Circuit US Court of Appeals, which ranks just below the US Supreme Court.

   Larsen was on Trump’s list of prospective Supreme Court nominees when he ran for president. But Larsen says she doesn’t know how she got on that list, and did not make any promises on how she’d deal with cases.

nikanenders.org

Governor Rick Snyder is asking Congress to act to protect people from deportation who were brought to the country illegally as children.

       The governor was responding to President Trump’s announcement that the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program will end in six months.          

wikipedia

The state is ordering Enbridge Energy to take swift action to fix portions of the Line Five energy pipeline that runs beneath the Straits of Mackinac.

   Corrosion protections were eroded during maintenance work on the line.

Enbridge reported to the state that small portions of enamel coating were accidentally removed.

   Melody Kindraka of the state Department of Environmental Quality says there’s no immediate threat to the Great Lakes, but it’s concerning that the problem was the result of human error.

npr.org

A former state lawmaker is asking the Michigan Supreme Court to let him run for another political office despite his promise not to.

   Former state Senator Virgil Smith says his plea bargain was unconstitutional.

Smith says prosecutors and judges can’t force a lawmaker to quit – only the Legislature has that power. He also says he couldn’t legally trade his office for a lighter sentence.

michigan.gov

Family members and attorneys for Iraqi Christians facing deportation say the possibility of pardons is giving them a new sense of hope.

Governor Rick Snyder asked the Michigan Parole Board to look into nearly 70 cases of Iraqis who’ve asked for pardons. They face deportation because of criminal convictions, many dating back years. The parole board has put nine of those requests on an expedited schedule.

detroit.cbslocal.com

The Wayne County prosecutor says she’ll appeal a ruling that lets a former state senator run for the Detroit City Council even though he promised not to seek public office.

  

The Michigan Court of Appeals has struck down a rule that says bars and party stores can’t sell “narcotics paraphernalia.”

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