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Candidate Forum: Soapbox Summer

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Ypsilanti – The Ypsilanti Board of Education election is approaching. The two challengers in the race are working as a team and using the slogan, "Continue the Excellence." The incumbants are stressing the need for change in the district.

Incumbants Floyd Brumfield and Andy Fanta, and challengers Melodie Gable and Allen Thompson all appeared at Monday night's "Meet the Candidates" forum. The event was sponsored by the Ypsilanti Education Association, the union representing district teachers.

Ann Arbor – Ann Arbor City Council has agreed to spend 114-thousand dollars to treat the city's stormwater system to kill mosquitos that could transmit the West Nile Virus. The money will be used to purchase and apply a larvacide. The larvacide will be applied this month, and again in June, July, and August. The allocation will cover the expense of a September application, if necessary. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Washtenaw County Health Department had suggested the treatments.

Ann Arbor – Ann Arbor City Council has held it's first vote on proposed changes to the way water customers are billed. The city says changes, and corresponding rate increases, are necessary to maintain the system. The changes would have residential customers charged a fee for being connected to the system, Rates would be increased as water usage increases. A public hearing on the changes has been set for June 16th.

Ann Arbor, MI – The Ann Arbor Board of Education today unanimously approved a new two-year contract with the district's teachers.
Tentative agreement was reached two weeks ago. Teachers approved the agreement yesterday.
The new contract includes wage increases of four percent in the first year and three-and-a-half percent in the second.
Teachers will also see higher out-of-pocket expenses for health care and other reductions in fringe benefits.
The district employs approximately 12-hundred teachers.

Getting to know the oddly informative Mo Rocca, panelist of NPR's Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!, which will be featured as a part of this year's Ann Arbor Summer Festival.

Ypsilanti, MI – Ypsilanti City Manager Ed Koryzno says preliminary demolition work will begin this week on four buildings in the Water Street re-development area.
This week's preliminary work will include asbestos abatement, and Koryzno says building demolition will begin no later than next Monday. He says that work should take about a month, with new building construction beginning next fall.

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NPR News

Ranking U.S. House Democrats are calling for an ethics investigation into Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke. They want to know more about a land deal between Zinke's family foundation and a real estate project with ties to the oil and gas giant Halliburton.

An Ohio man who has the hepatitis C virus was sentenced to 18 months in prison on June 14 for spitting at Cleveland police and medics, according to a news report.

More than $3 billion worth of U.S. goods — from bourbon and corn to Harley-Davidson motorcycles — are now under a 25 percent tariff in the European Union, in retaliation for the Trump administration's tariffs that hit the EU, Mexico and Canada this month.

"The trade that we believe in is built on rules, trust and reliable partnership," Jean-Claude Juncker, president of the EU Commission, said in a speech in Dublin on Thursday night. "The United States' decision to impose tariffs on Europe goes against that. In fact, it goes against all logic and history."

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