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Wednesday, February 5,2014

Cold cases now hot for Lansing police

Lansing Police Department opens homicide cold-case information to public, as veteran detective eases into a new role. But over 70 cases are unsolved.

by Andy Balaskovitz
It will no longer take hundreds of dollars and hours of work for the public to access basic information about unsolved homicides being investigated by the Lansing Police Department.
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Wednesday, February 5,2014

Political notes from around town

Republicans backed by DeVos family donors, bipartisan support for voter access and more

by Walt Sorg
Democrats are making the case that one family is buying undue influence in the state Senate. Campaign finance reports filed Friday provide major ammunition.
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Wednesday, February 5,2014

College football players are employees

Bid to unionize challenges NCAA, college rules for so-called ‘student-athletes’

by Mickey Hirten
The petition by Northwestern University football players seeking union representation raises issues that the billion-dollar college sports money machine casually dismisses — but shouldn’t. The appeal to the National Labor Relations Board, supported by most of the team, challenges the concept of “student athletes.” The players assert that they are employees.
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Wednesday, February 5,2014

BWL Watch

by Andy Balaskovitz and Mickey Hirten
If the BWL’s emergency plan for electric failed so miserably during the December ice storm, how confident can customers be that it has a competent plan for water emergencies?
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Tuesday, February 4,2014

CRT requests extensive documents from BWL

Independent panel reviewing BWL storm response requests documents on preparedness, communications and more

by Andy Balaskovitz
Tuesday, Feb. 4 — An independent panel has formally requested documents from the Lansing Board of Water and Light on its emergency preparedness, media and public communications, resource levels and capabilities and “recovery and mitigation” as part of its investigation of the December ice storm.
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Friday, January 31,2014

This week from Capital News Service

Pothole-resistant road materials; Michigan cities preparing for climate change; Michigan colleges among snowiest in nation; and more

by CNS correspondents
Friday, Jan. 31 — Each week, City Pulse runs a series of stories produced by Capital News Service correspondents at Michigan State University’s School of Journalism. This week’s topics include some new road materials being tested, how Michigan cities are preparing for climate change and more.
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Wednesday, January 29,2014

BWL Community Review Team sets public hearing dates

Chairman encourages not just ice storm experiences, but also "meaningful suggestions" for improvements

by City Pulse Staff
Wednesday, Jan. 29 — The chairman of an independent panel reviewing the Lansing Board of Water and Light's December ice-storm response is encouraging not just ratepayers' experiences at public hearings next week, but also suggestions on how the utility could have better handled the crisis.
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Wednesday, January 29,2014

Washington: ‘This butt chart is an incredible new low for us’

First Ward Lansing City Councilwoman says rift over new seating chart at dais makes the body look like the Three Stooges; says city attorney has no authority to determine where people sit

by Andy Balaskovitz
Wednesday, Jan. 29 — An internal struggle among Lansing City Council members, the city attorney and the city clerk over a new seating arrangement at meetings has left one Councilwoman “disgusted” and at odds with the city attorney’s reading of the City Charter.
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Wednesday, January 29,2014

Dais shuffle

Breaking practice, City Council President A’Lynne Boles shuffles the city clerk and city attorney to the end of the dais. They object.

by Andy Balaskovitz
For as long as anyone can remember, Lansing’s city clerk and city attorney have sat on either side of the president during City Council meetings.
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Wednesday, January 29,2014

Safe access

How Republican lawmakers went from reluctant to clamoring for a medical marijuana dispensary bill

by Andy Balaskovitz
Less than two years ago, state Rep.Mike Callton, R-Nashville, struggled just to get his conservative colleagues to discuss medical marijuana dispensaries.
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