Local News Archives

MI Schools Have New Guidelines For LGBT Students

The Michigan Board of Education has issued new guidelines to districts on how to treat LGBT students. The guidelines are voluntary, but have spurred criticism from conservative lawmakers, especially over restroom and bathroom policies for transgender students. State Representative Jon Hoadley says the policy is needed because LGBT students are more likely to face bullying.. ...Read Full Story

Zika Virus Shows Up In West Michigan

Nine cases of the Zika virus have been confirmed in west Michigan, specifically in Ottawa County. Kristina Wieghmink, with the Ottawa County Department of Public Health, says they’re all travel-related cases in people ranging in age from a teen to 50, but there are no pregnant women. She has advice for anyone traveling to countries where Zika is prevalent.. ...Read Full Story

Flags To Be Lowered For Lawmaker Killed In Traffic Crash

Governor Rick Snyder has ordered that flags be lowered Friday in the state Capitol complex and within the northern Michigan legislative
district of a lawmaker who was killed in a traffic accident. Flags will be lowered to half-staff for third-term Republican Representative Peter
Pettalia. He died Monday when his motorcycle collided with a pickup truck whose driver turned into his lane on southbound M-33 in Montmorency County. A memorial service is scheduled for Friday afternoon at the Presque Isle Lighthouse. Pettalia’s 106th House District includes all or parts of five counties along Lake Huron in the northeastern Lower Peninsula. Snyder says an outpouring of condolences for Pettalia from across Michigan “show how much his commitment to public service was respected and how much he will be missed.”. ...Read Full Story

2-Year-Old Boy Hit By Car In Sodus Township

A 2-year-old boy is being treated at Bronson Hospital in Kalamazoo after he was struck by a car in Sodus Township Thursday. The Berrien County Sheriff’s Department tells our newsroom deputies were called to Meadow Springs Trailer Court around 12:40 in the afternoon. When they arrived, they found a car stopped in the road and the boy being held by his father. Medic One took the boy to Lakeland Hospital, and he was airlifted from there to Bronson in Kalamazoo. Police say alcohol was not a factor in the crash. It’s still under investigation.. ...Read Full Story

Suspected Drunk Driver Causes Transformer Fire

A suspected drunk driver has turned out to be the cause of a power outage that affected parts of Lincoln and St. Joseph Townships overnight Thursday. The Lincoln Township Police Department says 72-year-old Thomas Zabadal, of St. Joseph, rolled his 2005 Buick near 500 Glenlord Road around 10:45 p.m. Wednesday. Police say he sheared an American Electric Power pole while doing so which caused a transformer to catch fire. That led to a power outage that shut down Upton Middle School and hit other businesses on Thursday. Officers found Zabadal’s blood alcohol level to be over the legal limit, and he’s been charged with drunk driving. He suffered minor injuries in the crash.. ...Read Full Story

MI Unemployment Unchanged In August

Michigan’s jobless rate was unchanged at 4.5 percent in August from July, remaining at its lowest level in 15 years. The Michigan Department of Technology, Management & Budget says that total employment recorded a reduction of 7,000 in August as the state’s labor force decreased by 5,000. The number of unemployed in Michigan rose by 2,000. Michigan seasonally adjusted jobless rate in August was below the state’s
August 2015 rate of 5.1 percent. The U.S. jobless rate was unchanged at 4.9 percent in August. Jason Palmer, director of the Bureau of Labor Market Information and Strategic Initiatives, says Wednesday the state’s labor market situation was stable. Governor Rick Snyder says in a statement Michigan needs to “continue our efforts to strengthen our workforce and create more opportunities for all Michiganders.”. ...Read Full Story

ITT Tech Shutting Down Friday

The for-profit college ITT Technical Institute says in a federal filing that it will stop operating Friday. Carmel, Indiana-based ITT Educational Services Inc. said in a Wednesday filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission that it would stop services about a week after it announced it would close its campuses. The company’s main lender recently seized ITT’s bank accounts. The college chain is shutting down all 130 of its U.S. campuses. The move affects more than 35,000 students and more than 8,000 jobs. Federal education officials banned the company last month from enrolling new students who use federal financial aid. The Education Department said the company had become a risk to students and taxpayers. ITT has laid off at least 660 Indiana workers. It had about 1,900 students in Indiana.. ...Read Full Story

Legislation Would Increase Michigan’s Beer Tax

At least one Michigan lawmaker wants to raise the state’s beer tax by 244%, and the organization that represents wine and beer sellers is crying foul. State Representative Tom Hooker, of Byron Center, introduced the plan on Wednesday. The beer tax hasn’t been raised since 1966, but Brett Visner, with the Michigan Beer and Wine Wholesalers Association, tells WSJM News that’s no reason to mess with a growing industry.. ...Read Full Story

Bill Aims To Make Fresh Fruits And Vegetables Available In Underserved Areas

A plan from state Representative Dave Pagel to help people in rural and urban areas get access to fresh fruits and veggies is getting high marks from the American Heart Association. The legislation had a hearing in the state House Wednesday, with the association’s Dave Hodgkins speaking in favor. He tells WSJM News folks in certain areas just don’t have any grocery stores in their towns, and have to buy food at little corner shops.. ...Read Full Story

Trump Visits Flint

The city of Flint is again making national headlines this week as Donald Trump has paid it a visit. On Wednesday, Trump toured the city’s water plant, and spoke at an historically black church. He said Flint can be helped.. ...Read Full Story