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Wednesday, July 23,2014

BWL the polluter

BWL’s poor responses to the ice storm and a plant accident may be forgivable, but failing to abate mercury pollution is another matter entirely

by Mickey Hirten
You have to wonder sometimes how the people who run Lansing Board of Water and Light sleep at night. We learned last week that the utility´s Erickson plant installed equipment in 2007 that would drastically reduce the amount of toxic mercury is spews out over Lansing and nearby communities. But it hasn´t turned it on to save money and, well, because it didn´t have to.
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Wednesday, July 16,2014

In Michigan, why not torture?

Supreme Court, A.G., embrace cruel and unusual punishment

by Mickey Hirten
Last week I wrote about Michigan´s shortsighted fiscal policies, its unwillingness to fund education, environment, roads, communities, etc. — investments that produce good jobs and real growth.
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Wednesday, July 9,2014

Pure decline

Michigan heads in the wrong direction

by Mickey Hirten
It´s easy here in Lansing to look at Detroit´s decline in isolation: big city problems, terrible schools, crumbling infrastructure, ragged parks, degraded public services.
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Wednesday, July 2,2014

Buzz words from Schuette’s PR mill

by Mickey Hirten
Since you very likely haven´t seen it, here is the latest twisted press release from the Attorney General Bill Schuette public relations mill. I´ll start from the bottom because
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Wednesday, June 18,2014

Regionalism: We like it, but we don´t

One of the good things that may surface from Lansing Board of Water and Light´s disastrous ice storm performance is a better understanding of the value of regionalism

by Mickey Hirten
Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero signaled last week that he is willing to expand BWL´s board of commissioners, adding non-voting members from East Lansing, Delta Township and a rotating annual seat shared by Delhi, Lansing, Meridian and DeWitt townships.
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Wednesday, June 11,2014

Rogers misleads on Bergdahl

by Mickey Hirten
For Republicans like mid-Michigan´s Congressman Mike Rogers, the mediafueled outrage over the return of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl from his Taliban captors is simply politics trumping patriotism.
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Wednesday, June 4,2014

The story of an estate sale

by Mickey Hirten
I received a note at my house last week alerting neighbors that an estate sale would be held on Thursday. It was staged just three houses away from mine and, in fact, attracted a large crowd.
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Wednesday, May 28,2014

Tomorrow‘s innovation today

Lansing looks to the 21st century ... and beyond

by Mickey Hirten
Lansing has good reason to celebrate its rich manufacturing history. After all, workers here helped launch the automobile industry, pioneering the car culture that has shaped our nation. The city was an automotive incubator for entrepreneurs and inventors who developed products and technologies that fashioned Lansing´s 20th century economy.
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Wednesday, May 21,2014

Keep public notices

by Mickey Hirten
There was a legislative hearing last week to change how public bodies tell us about proposed tax increases, zoning changes in our neighborhoods, new water rates and hundreds of other government actions that fall under the category of public notices.
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Wednesday, May 14,2014

Bernero: BWL is ‘on me’

Mayor explains why he is standing by Lark as general manager. It’s not just loyalty.

by Mickey Hirten
The long knives are out for the Lansing Board of Water and Light´s general manager, J. Peter Lark. Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero´s Community Review Team called for a culture change at the utility and doubted that Lark could manage it. The Lansing State Journal said in a long Sunday editor...
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