Taylor Pinson


Artrain has won the National Parks Service's Midwest Regional and National Partnership Awards.

The recognition is for Artrain and its partners' contributions to the Perry's Victory and International Peace Memorial at Put-in-Bay.

The memorial is part of the Battle of Lake Erie Bicentenial Commemoration.

Artrain President and CEO Deb Polich says other sites that have won this award include the parks in Yosemite and Gettysburg.

Polich says she applauds the National Park Service for wanting to incorporate art and culture into their work.

Washtenaw County Population Growing

Jun 26, 2014

Good new from the U.S. Census Bureau for Washtenaw County.

According to the Bureau, the County's population grew by .87 percent last year, one of the largest increases in southeast Michigan.

Washtenaw County Clerk Larry Kestenbaum says people are drawn to Ann Arbor and the county in general thanks partly to the types of industry available here.

"The other is that Ann Arbor has the national reputation as a good place to live," Kestenbaum says.   

Kestenbaum says Washtenaw County remains one of the economically healthiest areas in Michigan.


Next month we'll start to see some of the improvements promised by the Ann Arbor Transportation Authority with approval of its .7 mil transit levy.

AAATA says it will begin offering extended hours on many routes starting August 24th. 

It will also start a new route with hourly service between the Ypsilanti District Library and the Ypsilanti Transit Center.

Find a complete listing of transit improvements coming in August online:


Eastern Michigan University's Vice President of Government and Community Relations is leaving to take a job as Chief of Staff to retiring Congressman John Dingell.

EMU Discusses 2015 Budget At Forum

Jun 12, 2014
Bob Eccles

Eastern Michigan University's recently approved $301.9 million fiscal year 2015 spending plan was the subject of a late morning forum.

Chief Financial Officer John Lumm says the budget is fiscally responsible, and will help EMU continue to improve its overall financial position. 

Included in the budget is a tuition increase of 3.2 percent - the maximum allowed by the state for schools wishing to receive funding. 

EMU is also making $4.6 million more in financial aid available, and budgeted for safety enhancements like the hiring of 10 new public safety officers.


The Washtenaw County Sheriff's Office has identified three or four individuals believed to be the leaders in a recent rash of juvenile gang-related trouble at the Huron Heights apartment complex on Leforge Road.

Director of Community Engagement Derrick Jackson says a group of mostly middle school to early high schoolers has been mimicking gang behavior, leading to numerous calls for police service. 

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Washtenaw County will seek the community's thoughts on what to do with the former Juvenile Center property on Platt Road.

A consultant will spend the next seven months helping the county decide how to proceed. 

Plans call for a three-day charrette to give the public a chance to weigh in on the future use of the 13-point-five acre parcel, but dates for that workshop have not been set.


More than 1,800 people came together for Sunday's Grillin' for Food Gatherers fundraiser.

The money generated from the event will be used to help the local non-profit organization combat food insecurity throughout Washtenaw County.

Food Gatherers President Eileen Spring says the money raised from yesterday's event will provide 35,000 meals and snacks between now and September.

Find out more about Food Gatherers online:


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A new study from the University of Michigan has found half of pregnant women who snore and suffer from hypertension also have a sleep disorder.

If left untreated, disorders like sleep apnea can result in a variety of health risks for the mother including high blood pressure, pre-eclampsia and a higher risk for C-sections.

The study's lead author, Dr. Louise O'Brien, says if a hypertensive pregnant woman snores more than three nights a week she should likely receive further evaluation by a sleep specialist.

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This year's tax foreclosure auctions are a mixed bag for Washtenaw County.

There are fewer items for auction this year, but the number land parcels has increased. The major cause for the difference is the foreclosure of three incomplete subdivisions, which are being sold as combined items. County Treasurer Catherine McClary says they are still preparing a list of all properties being auctioned but should have it available to the public in coming days. 


Driving around the Ann Arbor-Saline Road area can be like waiting for a slow train, but there is light at the end of the tunnel.

The Washtenaw County Road Commission begins Stage 2 of its Ann Arbor-Saline Road Improvements project Friday.

Northbound lanes will be closed between the eastbound I-94 on ramp and Eisenhower Parkway.

The southbound lane closures at the Main Street intersection and the south side of Northbrook Drive and Oakbrook Drive will remain in effect.

Ann Arbor Rotary Offers Scholarship

Jun 4, 2014

The Rotary Club of Ann Arbor wants to help a student who graduated from a high school in Ann Arbor - public or private - attend Washtenaw Community College.

The "Service before Self" scholarship awards $1,250 toward fall and winter tuition. 

The application process includes writing a 250-word essay on how the applicant has served others in school or in their community.  The deadline for applying is June 10th.

Find out more about the Rotary Club of Ann Arbor and how to apply for the scholarship:


Eastern Michigan University's Children's Institute is launching its first ever summer Great Start Readiness program thanks to a $50,000 grant from Michigan's Department of Education.

The nine week-long program prepares preschoolers for the upcoming school year.

Institute director Chris Finch says early education plays a vital role in ensuring children are prepared for a school setting.

Find out more about EMU's Children's Institute and the Great Start Readiness Program online:


Washtenaw County could soon get a major boost to its economy.

The county has applied for a nearly one million dollar federal grant to convert the old GM Powertrain plant in Ypsilanti Township into a research & development facility for connected and automated vehicles.

County Administrator Verna McDaniel says if the grant is approved, it could lead to creation of 7,800 research and skilled trade jobs.

McDaniel says the county should know one way or the other in the next two to three weeks.

Creekshead Preserve
Legacy Land Conservancy

  Legacy Land Conservancy is ensuring parts of York Township remain green for future generations.

The non-profit organization has signed an agreement with Kendall Rogers Farm that will preserve 159 acres of historic farm and forest land and prevent it from being sub-divided or developed for non-farming uses.

Legacy Land Conservancy's Executive Director Susan Lackey says conservation agreements like this one help ensure the community has enough farmland to remain sustainable for generations to come.


One of Washtenaw County's worst roads is about to get a lot smoother, thanks to the Ann Arbor Bicycle Touring Society.

The group has donated $40,000 to help re-pave a half-mile stretch of Huron River Drive.

Washtenaw County Road Commission Managing Director Roy Townsend says the half-mile stretch will be closed and re-paved in August.

The project should take a week to complete.

Find out more about the Ann Arbor Bicycle Touring Society online:


And on Facebook:


In another sign of economic recovery, prices for homes in Washtenaw County are rising.

April's average home prices are up 10 percent from the same time last year, but that doesn't mean property taxes will be matching that increase.

County Treasurer Catherine McClary says Michigan law prevents property taxes from being raised by more than 5 percent a year.

McClary says rising sale prices are a good sign for the county, and will make it easier for home owners to get out of an underwater mortgage.

Michigan Hosts Virtual Job Fair Wednesday

May 20, 2014
Bob Eccles

Michigan is using state-of-the-art technology to help people find work without leaving the comfort of their own home.

The state is hosting a virtual career fair Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. 

Joe Quick is the manager of talent programs at the Michigan Economic Development Corporation.

He says they hope this fair will generate some great connections between employers and qualified talent for these positions.

Here's a link to the virtual job fair:



Washtenaw County's bridges are falling apart, and the Road Commission can't afford to fix them.

The Commission's Managing Director Roy Townsend says around 70 of Washtenaw County's bridge are in need of repairs or other maintenance and another 30 have been labeled "structurally deficient."

Townsend says it would cost the county more than $30 million to replace them.

The Washtenaw County Board of Commissioners is currently considering a 1 mill property tax to fund roadwork.


Google is partnering with Eastern Michigan University to ensure small businesses and non-profit organizations have the tools they need to thrive in the online world.


Michigan teachers could soon get some tax relief for donating materials to the classroom.

Ann Arbor State Representative Jeff Irwin has proposed a bill that would give a tax credit to educators who spend up to $1,000 on supplies for their students.

Irwin says this issue is a symptom of a much larger problem facing public education in Michigan, and shows the state is not doing enough to fund public education.


Eastern Michigan University has a new Associate Vice President for Student Affairs.


Ann Arbor's expanded compost program is proving popular with the community.

Since April, city residents have been allowed to add all plate scrapings to residential composting bins for pick-up.


A new store could soon be moving into the old Farmer jack site near the corner of Washtenaw Avenue and Golfside Road.

Ypsilanti Township Planning Coordinator Joe Lawson says several businesses have approached them about the property, but it has remained unused for the last seven years.

"We've been approached by the Salvation Army out of Detroit to purchase the building outright," Lawson says, "and to open a family store similar to the ones located in Ann Arbor and in Canton."


Washtenaw County's jail system could soon see an influx of new prisoners.

State Senator John Proos is proposing a bill to limit the number of inmates held in the state's prison system. If passed, it would restrict Michigan's prison population to 38,000, or about 6,000 less than are currently housed in state prisons.

Washtenaw County Sheriff Jerry Clayton says if the bill is left unchanged, it could lead to overcrowding in county jails.