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Wednesday, February 11,2015

Briefs

by City Pulse
  Friedland Industries wins Outstanding Small Business Award   Friedland Industries received the Greater Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce Outstanding Small Business Award at the chamber’s annual dinner Tuesday. “For nearly 130 years, our family has been...
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Wednesday, February 11,2015

Eye candy of the week

by Daniel Bollman, AIA
Property: 4650 Meridian Road, Saint Katherine’s Chapel, Williamston The State of Michigan historical marker for this structure suggests that it was “the work of an unsophisticated country builder.” This blunt opinion notwithstanding, the building demonstrates the ski...
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Wednesday, February 11,2015

One party payback

Republican legislative agenda:Radical to ridiculous to rational

by Mickey Hirten
The consequence of one-party government — that is Republican — in Michigan can be found in the 78-point grab bag of “action items” release by House members last week. As you would expect after years of inbreeding, what comes out of the Republican caucus can seem normal and reasonable … until it isn´t. Granted, it´s a political document that´s broad enough to cover the spectrum of Republican thinking. And there are, in fact, initiatives that are some worthy for all of Michigan. But not too many.
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Wednesday, February 11,2015

Shock and awe

Tim Barron attacks shooting victim in Facebook post

by Belinda Thurston
Progress Michigan is asking Lansing radio host Tim Barron to apologize for a post on his Facebook page Sunday that appears to blame the victim of a shooting in East Lansing last week for his own death. Michael Smith, 22 of Lansing, was shot to death last Thursday in a parking lot in East Lansing. The shooting remains under investigation.
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Wednesday, February 11,2015

Immunization obligation?

Disease outbreaks pit public health against personal choice

by Belinda Thurston
Since 2000 measles was a distant memory, banished like polio or smallpox. But the highly contagious airborne disease is making a comeback with more than 600 cases last year and 121 so far this year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Vaccinations provided a wall of protection, accepted as settled medical science. But it isn’t for some. With fear whipping to a froth and resentment and blame aimed at anti-vaxxers — those who decline to inoculate their children — the issue comes down to free choice. Should vaccinations be mandatory? Should we offer philosophical objection waivers at all?
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Wednesday, February 4,2015

Mayor says he seeks ‘balanced approach’ to BWL

by City Pulse
City Pulse freelance reporter Todd Heywood asked, by email, for further comment from Mayor Virg Bernero on his proposed City Charter amendments to create an inspector general in his cabinet to oversee the Lansing Board of Water & Light and to clarify the change of command of BWL’s attorney. Randy Hannan, Bernero’s chief of staff, responded:
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Wednesday, February 4,2015

Eyesore of the week

by Daniel Bollman, AIA
To be fair, this house is not excessively deteriorated. Although the trash scattered in the front yard has been removed, the scrubby shrubs and peeling paint remain. It would not be unfair to describe the property as “tired.” The main upper story window is damaged and the original trim details were removed or obscured when the current grey siding was installed. With some minor effort, this simple side-loaded home could be transformed into the illustration attached.
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Wednesday, February 4,2015

Surveying the BWL political wreckage

by Mickey Hirten
For a politician, it´s self-inflicted wounds that hurt the most. Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero surely feels the pain after his failed bid to take control of the Lansing Board of Water & Light, the city´s semi-autonomous public utility. Bernero orchestrated the ouster of BWL’s general manager, J. Peter Lark, who resisted the mayor´s push to treat the utility like other city departments. Prodded by Bernero and increasingly dissatisfied with the general manager´s performance and attitude, five BWL commissioners voted to fire MICKEY HIRTEN Lark for still unspecified causes. Bernero hinted — broadly — at changes in the City Charter to curtail BWL oversight by the board.
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Wednesday, February 4,2015

BWL control, and questions

Bernero´s inspector general proposal a ´midway measure´

by Todd Heywood
Mayor Virg Bernero’s struggle with governing the Lansing Board of Water & Light is on slow motion repeat — a "Groundhog Day" measured in years, rather than hours. In July 2006, the BWL was on the hunt for a new general manager (eventually resulting in the choice of Bernero’s candidate, J. Peter Lark). First-term Mayor Virg Bernero had clear ideas about whom that new leader should report to: him, according to an op-ed piece by then BWL Commissioner Joseph Graves Jr. in the Lansing State Journal. He alleged the independence of the board was “under assault” by Bernero.
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Wednesday, February 4,2015

Register of deeds race

Koenig transferred tax debts two weeks before primary election

by Todd Heywood
Carol Koenig, one of three finalists to be Ingham County register of deeds, was ramping up for the final two weeks of her primary campaign to retain her seat as a county commissioner last July when she transferred responsibility for overdue taxes through property transfers, records show. She did so by selling the properties to James Boucher, co-resident and co-owner with her of a home in East Lansing.
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