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Michigan News
10:11 am
Tue June 17, 2014

Detroit Zoo To 'Break Ice' On New Penguin Center

Credit Courtesy Image / detroitzoo.org

The Detroit Zoo plans to "break ice" on a center dedicated to penguins. Officials are to take part in an "ice-breaking" ceremony  today for the $29.5 million, 33,000-square-foot Polk Penguin Conservation Center at the zoo in suburban Royal Oak. 

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Michigan News
10:04 am
Tue June 17, 2014

Oral Arguments Set In Michigan Gay Marriage Case

Credit Wikipedia

Oral arguments have been officially scheduled by a federal appeals court about Michigan's dispute over gay marriage. 

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WEMU News
4:33 am
Tue June 17, 2014

Botswana's Ambassador To The U.S. Talks Health Care At St. Joe's

Her Excellency Tebelelo Seretse, the Republic of Botswana's ambassador to the U.S., speaks with staff at St. Joseph Mercy Hospital Ann Arbor.
Credit Bob Eccles

There are plenty of ways the health care system in the African nation of Botswana appears to be doing a better job than the U.S. health care system, but both countries can also learn from each other.

That's the assessment from her Excellency Tebelelo Seretse, Botswana's ambassador to the U.S., who spoke with staff at St. Joseph Mercy Hospital Ann Arbor Monday afternoon. 

The ambassador says it can take a person in Washington D.C. two weeks to get an appointment with a private physician.

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Michigan News
4:32 am
Tue June 17, 2014

Governor Requests More Help For Refugees

Credit wikipedia commons

Snyder: More needs to be done to help refugees in Michigan

The number of refugees who have settled in Michigan has grown in recent years - and Governor Rick Snyder says more should be done to help them.

At a town hall meeting at the Arab American National Museum in Dearborn, Snyder called on community leaders to help the state find ways to help refugees.

"It's important that we find ways to help these people - they've gone through terrible circumstances - about making them feel welcome in our country," Snyder told reporters after the town hall.

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Michigan News
4:32 am
Tue June 17, 2014

Michigan, Israel Sign Research And Development Agreement

Gov. Snyder and Israeli Consul General to the Midwest Roey Gilad met in Dearborn on Monday to sign a memorandum of understanding to do joint industrial research and development.
Credit Michigan Public Radio Network

Michigan forges official relationship with Israel on industrial R&D

Gov. Rick Snyder has cemented a formal relationship between Michigan and Israel to collaborate on industrial research and development.

The governor and Israeli Consul General to the Midwest Roey Gilad signed a memorandum of understanding Monday in Dearborn.
    
Snyder says the deal was reached after more than a year of talks with Israeli officials.

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Community
3:42 pm
Mon June 16, 2014

Ann Arbor City Council Considering Extended Stay Hotel Plans

Credit Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Plans for an extended stay hotel in downtown Ann Arbor should clear their last hurdle tonight.  Ann Arbor City Council will consider the site plan and development agreement for a nearly 90-thousand square foot building at Huron and Ashley.  

89.1 WEMU's Andrew Cluley reports on an extended stay hotel proposal Ann Arbor City Council will consider Monday night.

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Community
3:42 pm
Mon June 16, 2014

Michigan Theater Foundation Buying State Theatre

Credit Michigan Theater

For 15 years the Michigan Theater staff has helped choose and market films at Ann Arbor's State Theatre.  A deal reached today will have the Michigan own and operate the portion of the State Theatre that's currently used for movies.  

89.1 WEMU's Andrew Cluley reports on the Michigan Theater Foundation buying the State Theatre.
 
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Education
3:41 pm
Mon June 16, 2014

Ann Arbor Teachers Want Alternatives To Salary Freeze

Credit Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Ann Arbor teachers still hope to find solutions to the district's budget that won't leave last year's wage concession in place.  The district has set a deadline of next Monday to have an agreement in place or the entire contract will be terminated at the end of the month.  

89.1 WEMU's Andrew Cluley reports Ann Arbor teachers still want to work with the district to avoid a salary freeze that maintains concessions made last year.

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Education
9:15 am
Mon June 16, 2014

Ann Arbor Public Schools Officials To Share Budget Concerns With State Board Of Education

Credit Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Ann Arbor Public Schools leaders get a chance to present funding concerns to the state board of education this week.  Tuesday's meeting comes on the heels of the legislature approving a K-12 budget that forced the district to delay approving next year's budget.  

89.1 WEMU's Andrew Cluley reports on Ann Arbor Public Schools officials sharing their funding concerns with the State Board of Education.
  
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Community
9:14 am
Mon June 16, 2014

Ann Arbor City Council To Consider Plans To Improve Liberty Plaza

Credit Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

In recent years there has been a lot of talk about the need for a downtown park above Ann Arbor's underground parking structure.  Now Ann Arbor City Council will consider a resolution to pay for a re-design of the Liberty Plaza just to the northeast of the garage.   

89.1 WEMU's Andrew Cluley reports on Ann Arbor City Council considering another effort to improve Liberty Plaza.

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WEMU News
2:49 pm
Fri June 13, 2014

Weather Decent For Viewing 'Super Moon'

EMU's Sherzer Observatory, as seen from the WEMU newsroom window.
Credit Bob Eccles

The weather looks like it will cooperate and give us a decent view of tonight's "Super Moon".

Norbert Vance is director of Eastern Michigan University's Sherzer Observatory. 

He says that as the summer solstice approaches, the moon is at its lowest point on the horizon, "Which gives it the illusion of riding low and mysteriously colored orange in that southern sky."

And being a full moon, it'll appear huge tonight.  But Vance says you can take measurements and see that tonight's moon is no larger than the moon as it appears other nights high in the sky. 

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2:27 pm
Fri June 13, 2014

Singer Jimmy Scott Dies At 88

Lead in text: 
Jimmy Scott, whose distinctively high soprano voice—caused by a rare genetic condition called Kallmann’s syndrome—gave his music a purity and youthfulness even into old age, died June 12 in his sleep at his Las Vegas home. His death, the cause of which has not yet been revealed, was confirmed by a family friend. Scott was 88.
Born James Victor Scott in Cleveland, Ohio, on July 17, 1925, one of 10 children, “Little” Jimmy Scott, as he was known early in his career, was born with the aforementioned condition, which stunted his physical growth and made him unable to reach puberty. As a result, Scott’s singing voice was unusually high for an adult male, however he used it to his advantage onstage and in the recordings he made beginning in the late 1940s with the Lionel Hampton Orchestra, Charlie Parker and others.
Community
1:34 pm
Fri June 13, 2014

Meet Ann Arbor Candidates For Mayor Saturday

Credit Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Primary elections are less than two months away so candidates are getting busy knocking on doors and sharing their vision.  Ann Arbor voters also have several chances to see all four Democrats running for Mayor in the coming weeks.  

89.1 WEMU's Andrew Cluley reports on upcoming forums with the 4 democrats running to replace outgoing Ann Arbor Mayor John Hieftje.

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WEMU News
12:01 pm
Fri June 13, 2014

A New Name For Chelsea Community Hospital

Credit Saint Joseph Mercy Health System

After more than five years as a member of Saint Joseph Mercy Health System (SJMHS), the Board of Trustees of Chelsea Community Hospital has decided to rename the hospital St. Joseph Mercy Chelsea.

The name was approved after several months of careful study, market research, mission discernment and input from community members, donors, physicians and colleagues. 

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WEMU News
4:48 am
Fri June 13, 2014

Arbor Hospice Celebrates 30th Anniversary

Credit arborhospice.org

Ann Arbor Hospice has come a long way in the last 30 years, as has the field of hospice care.

Gloria Brooks is president and CEO of Arbor Hospice. 

She says they started back in 1984 seeing nine patients a day.  Now, Arbor Hospice cares for more than 250 patients a day in Washtenaw County and six other counties in southeast Michigan. 

Brooks says hospice facilities have faced challenges over the years, most recently from the Affordable Care Act, which has reduced payments to providers.

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WEMU News
4:47 am
Fri June 13, 2014

Habitat For Humanity Focusing On West Willow Neighborhood

Credit h4h.org

Volunteers from Habitat for Humanity of Huron Valley will descend on Ypsilanti Township's West Willow neighborhood this weekend to help homeowners with chores like painting and cleaning out gutters.

A dozen or more homes will be targeted in Saturday's effort. 

Habitat's focus on helping to revitalize the West Willow neighborhood is expected to continue for several years.

Find out more about Habitat for Humanity of Huron Valley online:

http://www.h4h.org/

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Michigan News
4:47 am
Fri June 13, 2014

State Supreme Court To Hear Two More Medical Marijuana Cases

Credit wikimedia commons

Michigan Supreme Court takes two more medical marijuana cases

The state Supreme Court has agreed to hear two more medical marijuana cases. Two medical marijuana cardholders want the state's highest court to rule that a voter-approved law shields them from criminal charges.

In both cases, the defendants say the fact that they have medical marijuana cards should protect them from prosecution even if they did not abide by the letter of the law.

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Community
6:00 pm
Thu June 12, 2014

Ann Arbor Summer Festival Kicks-Off Tonight

Credit Ann Arbor Summer Festival

The new executive director of the Ann Arbor Summer Festival hopes everyone in the area will find something they like at the 31st annual event.  That shouldn't be a problem with more than 140 concerts and events kicking-off tonight.  

89.1 WEMU's Andrew Cluley reports on the start of the Ann Arbor Summer Festival.

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Community
4:54 pm
Thu June 12, 2014

Ann Arbor's 14th Annual Mayor's Green Fair Friday

The Nature House at the Leslie Science and Nature Center.
Credit Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Ann Arbor Mayor John Hieftje believes the Leslie Science and Nature Center is a great example of efforts to make the city more green.  Tonight he'll host the 14th annual Mayor's Green Fair

89.1 WEMU's Andrew Cluley reports on the Green Fair and Ann Arbor's other "green" efforts.

  

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Education
4:29 pm
Thu June 12, 2014

Ann Arbor School Board Waiting To Approve 2014-15 Budget

Credit Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

The Ann Arbor School Board has taken steps towards completing next year's budget, but chose not to vote on the plan Wednesday night.  The delay is designed to give more time to adjust spending based on the state's new K-12 funding model.  

89.1 WEMU's Andrew Cluley reports the Ann Arbor School Board is waiting a couple of weeks to pass next year's budget, but has taken steps forward on the plan.

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Community
11:27 am
Thu June 12, 2014

Ann Arbor Downtown Development Authority Looks To Make Streets And Sidewalks More Vibrant

Ann Arbor's typically vibrant Main Street was quiet following one of this winter's snowstorms.
Credit Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Improving downtown Ann Arbor streetscapes is becoming a priority. The downtown streets have different primary functions, but the Downtown Development Authority wants to make sure all are as vibrant as possible.   

89.1 WEMU's Andrew Cluley reports on the first public meeting for the Downtown Development Authority's Downtown Streets Framework Plan.

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Michigan News
10:00 am
Thu June 12, 2014

Ann Arbor Schools Hire Company For Custodial Work

Credit a2schools.org

The Ann Arbor Public Schools Board of Education has approved hiring company to run its custodial services starting in July.  The Ann Arbor News reports 114 custodians will no longer be employees of the district as of June 30. Crew chiefs also would be laid off. 

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WEMU News
8:44 am
Thu June 12, 2014

EMU VP Leaving To Become Dingell Chief Of Staff

Congressman John Dingell.
Credit dingell.house.gov

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.

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WEMU News
8:44 am
Thu June 12, 2014

EMU Discusses 2015 Budget At Forum

EMU's Pease Auditorium.
Credit 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.

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WEMU News
8:44 am
Thu June 12, 2014

Ringleaders Identified In Recent Gang-Related Crime Surge

Credit eWashtenaw.org

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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