Friday Morning State News Summary
Fri, 25 Jan 2013 02:02:18 EST
Attorney General Bill Schuette is asking the Attorney Grievance Commission to look into former Michigan Supreme Court Justice Diane Hathaway's conduct.
Schuette, a Republican, cited a Judicial Tenure Commission complaint against Hathaway, a Democrat, that accused her of committing bank fraud, tax fraud, money laundering and lying to investigators about some real estate transactions.
Hathaway is accused of transferring ownership of a home in Florida to a relative while trying to get approval for a short sale of a home in Grosse Pointe. She is facing federal bank fraud charges and retired from the court Monday.
Technically, the Hathaway matter is still on the Tenure Commission docket. They meet February 4, at which time they could theoretically either take the case off or keep it on. If it doesn't move forward with the Hathaway matter, the Attorney Grievance Commission could discredit her not just as a judge, but a lawyer as well.
The agency has the power to, among other things, take away or suspend an attorney's license. According to the State Bar of Michigan, Hathaway has been licensed since 1987.
(MI-Local Unemployment Rates)
Seasonally unadjusted unemployment rates rose in all of Michigan’s 17 major labor market areas in December.
According to the Michigan Department of Technology, Management & Budget, total employment levels decreased in most regions over the month, while labor force levels increased in the majority of areas.
A spokesman says December labor market activity throughout the state was fairly normal as unemployment rates typically increase going into the winter months.
The Ann Arbor area had the state's lowest jobless rate last month at five-point-one percent while Northeast Lower Michigan had the highest at 12-point-one percent.
Michigan seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in December was 8.9 percent.
A state lawmaker is looking into the idea of putting a new surcharge on tires, including bicycle tires and off-road vehicles, to help raise revenue for road and bridge maintenance in Michigan.
State House Republican Wayne Schmidt of Traverse City told the Lansing-based "Gongwer News Service" that while it might not be the right idea, bicycle and ORV tires should at least be considered as a source of revenue, since in recent years Michigan has seen the growth of bicycle lanes and expanded shoulders on county roads.
The comment comes as lawmakers are poised to look for ways to raise up to one-point six (b) billion dollars needed for roads, according to a recent study
(MI-Voter Registration Deadline)
Secretary of State Ruth Johnson says Michigan residents have until Monday to register in order to vote in the February 26 election.
School districts and municipalities in 42 counties are holding elections.
To register, applicants must be at least 18 years old by Election Day and be U.S. citizens. Applicants must also be residents of Michigan and of the city or township in which they wish to register.
Voters may register by mail or in person at their county, city or township clerk's office or by visiting any Secretary of State office. The mail-in form is available at michigan.gov/elections.
First-time voters who register by mail must vote in person in their first election, unless they hand-deliver the application to their local clerk, are 60 years old or older, are disabled or are eligible to vote under the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act.
Residents can check on their registration status online at the Michigan Voter Information Center at michigan.gov/vote.
(Capitol-RTW Repeal Effort)
Michigan Democrats are already at work trying to repeal the state's new right-to-work laws.
Senate Democrat Hoon-Yung Hopgood announced yesterday (Thursday) that he has submitted for introduction bills to repeal right-to-work laws.
Hopgood says the people of Michigan were completely shut out of the legislative process with the right-to-work regulation.
Republican lawmakers passed the legislation to make Michigan the nation's 24th right-to-work state over the objections of Democrats and thousands of protesters that demonstrated outside the Capitol building.
The likelihood of Hopgood's legislation being passed is slim as it would need the blessing of Republican leadership to get a hearing or a vote.
House Democrats are working on similar legislation.
(Detroit-Belle Isle Vote)
A Detroit City Council vote on whether the state should run Belle Isle didn’t happen Thursday, but state officials trying to coax out a “yes” vote told council members what would happen if the plan gets the green light.
DNR Chief of Law Enforcement Gary Hagler said, if approved, you would see an infusion of nearly 28 community police officers on Belle Isle, who would work closely to help the Detroit Police Department.
Belle Isle Conservatory President Michele Hodges says she believes the amped-up police presence would be a boon for the island.
Council members Kwame Kenyatta spoke for nearly 10 minutes, begging colleagues to reject the proposal because he said it would “break the spirit of the people.”
The proposal calls for the state to lease Belle Isle for a decade at a time, with the city still owning the park. The Michigan DNR would operate it and sell $11 annual vehicle passes to people who visit.
The state has committed to upgrading the 985-acre park, which has blight and maintenance issues and is not a destination for many outside the city.
The City Council could take a final vote sometime next week.
A poll commissioned by the American Cancer Society's Cancer Action Network indicates a majority of registered voters in the state want Michigan to expand Medicaid eligibility to help low-income individuals get health insurance coverage.
The federal Affordable Care Act initially called for each state to expand eligibility for Medicaid to those persons with incomes of 133 percent of the federal poverty limit, but the U.S. Supreme Court ruled Congress could not require the states to make that expansion.
According to the poll, by 40 percentage points, 63 percent to 23 percent, Michigan voters supported expanding Medicaid coverage, especially since initially it will be funded by the U.S. government.
Governor Rick Snyder is considering calling for the expansion.
A 48-year-old man who is accused of taking his father's corpse from a Detroit cemetery will undergo a mental competency examination.
Vincent Bright of Detroit is charged with disinterment of a dead body, which carries a maximum sentence of ten years in prison.
Officials say he took the casket containing 93-year-old Clarence Bright with the help of another man from a cemetery on the city's east side on January 14th. Police say they recovered the casket and van at a gas station the next day, but the body was removed.
Investigators located the remains in a freezer in the basement of Vincent Bright's home. Authorities say Bright took the body believing he could resurrect his father through prayer.
Bright remains in the Wayne County jail on $75,000 bond.
(Help from: Metro Source)
(Rogers City-Fire Ruled Accidental)
A fire that destroyed a 100 year old building in downtown Rogers City earlier this week has been ruled as accidental. The structure on the city's north end contained several apartments, as well as a barber shop and former beauty salon.
Fire Chief Mike Kroll says an apartment tenant was preparing some food and using an open pan full of grease which ignited. The resident attempted to douse the flames with a fire extinguisher, but it did not work.
After the blaze was extinguished Monday, fire crews had to return to the scene 3 times due to hot spots rekindling from debris ranging from furniture to clothing and newspapers.
One person was taken to the hospital for smoke inhalation but has since been released. A cat and a dog perished in the blaze.
The building was constructed in 1912 as the Fred Fish Brewery. The owner said it has been remodeled multiple times over the years but there are no plans to re-build.
(St. Clair Shores-Victims Identified)
St. Clair Shores police have identified the man and woman found dead in a home earlier this month, however they're still not sure what caused their deaths.
Authorities have identified the man as 27-year-old David Casares (Cass-AIRES) of Grosse Pointe Park, and the woman as 38-year-old Rebecca Brown of St. Clair Shores. According to friends and relatives, Brown and Casares were acquaintances but were not dating.
Their bodies were found January 15th in the living room of Brown's home.
(Detroit-NAIAS-Most Expensive Car)
You can look, but you can’t touch.
A souped up version of the Bentley Mulsanne has the distinction of being the most expensive car on the floor at this year’s North American International Auto Show In Detroit.
Bentley spokesperson Kristen Thompson said the hand-crafted Mulsanne is the ultimate in luxury, with a price tag of $368,000.
Thompson said it takes over 500 hours to complete just one Mulsanne.
The car’s interior is completely decked out with some of the world’s finest leather and then, there’s an exclusive clock from high-end watch company, Breitling.
But one of the most impressive things about the Mulsanne is its back seat.
Thompson says the back seats have heating and cooling, massagers, and you can recline in them as well. In between the seats is a new bottle cooler that retracts with room for two champagne bottles and three crystal flutes. There’s also two TVs.
Under the hood, the Mulsanne has a 6 ¾-litre, 90-degree V8 engine, an all-new 505 brake horse power engineering marvel that generates 752 foot pounds of torque.
You can’t get too up close and personal with the Mulsanne at the Auto Show, however. Thompson said the only way you’ll be able to get inside of one is by making an appointment at a Bentley dealer.
The Auto Show runs through Sunday at downtown Detroit’s Cobo Center.
(Sandra McNeill, WWJ, Detroit)
Tonight's (Fri) Mega Millions jackpot is worth $89 (m) million dollars.
The winning numbers for the Midday 3 lottery on Thursday were: 2-4-5.
The winning numbers for the Midday 4 lottery were: 4-0-3-2.
The winning numbers for the Evening 3 lottery were: 0-1-1.
The winning numbers for the evening 4 lottery were: 2-1-9-5.
The winning numbers for the Fantasy 5 lottery were: 1-4-7-15-21.
The winning numbers for the Keno lottery were: 6, 7, 10, 20, 25, 29, 30, 40, 42, 46, 48, 50, 53, 54, 59, 60, 61, 67, 70, 71, 72, 76.
Saturday's Classic Lotto jackpot is projected to be four-point-seven-five (m) million dollars.