WCSG News

 
November 15

11/15/18 – Migrants fill Tijuana shelters, more on way to US border

TIJUANA, Mexico (AP) — The first members of a caravan of Central Americans to reach the U.S. border slept in overcrowded shelters and in tents with a view of armed U.S. Border Patrol agents, with many saying they will wait for other migrants to join them before making their next moves. Hundreds of migrants have arrived by bus in Tijuana since Tuesday, occupying the little space still available in the city’s shelters and spilling onto an oceanfront plaza sandwiched between an old bullring and a border fence topped with recently installed concertina wire. The Juventud 2000 shelter squeezed in 15 […]
November 15

11/15/18 – Merkel happy Brexit deal with Britain reached

(AP) – German Chancellor Angela Merkel says she’s happy that negotiators were able to come to agreement on a draft Brexit deal. Speaking at an event in Potsdam, Merkel told reporters that it is now up to the British Parliament and the parliaments of the 27 remaining EU member nations to analyze the deal. She says “I am very happy it was possible to come up with a proposal after long, and not easy, negotiations.” Merkel did not comment on the resignations in the British government following the deal. On Thursday, a swathe of ministers, including Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab, […]
November 15

11/15/18 – Michigan Medicaid approved for drug pricing experiment

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Michigan is the second state to receive federal approval for a drug-pricing experiment that supporters say may enable the state to save money and ensure medicines are working as advertised. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services announced the waiver approval Wednesday, months after OK’ing a similar proposal from Oklahoma. Administrator Seema Verna says Michigan will be empowered to “demand results from drug manufacturers in exchange for paying for medicines” for Medicaid recipients. Under the value-based purchasing program, the state and a pharmaceutical company would agree to a set payment if its medication works as advertised, […]
November 15

11/15/18 – Prospects good for Michigan’s firearms deer season

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — As deer hunters take to woods and fields for the annual firearms season, Michigan wildlife experts say prospects are good for an uptick in the harvest. The season runs from Thursday through Nov. 30. The Department of Natural Resources says relatively mild winter and spring weather appears to have boosted the deer herd’s health and the number of surviving fawns. The Upper Peninsula continues to bounce back from harsh winters a few years ago. The deer kill increased in 2017 and the DNR says it should rise again this year. The department also predicts a bigger […]
November 15

11/15/18 – Senate OKs Coast Guard bill with ballast water compromise

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) — The U.S. Senate approved a compromise policy Wednesday on dumping ship ballast water in coastal ports and the Great Lakes, a practice blamed for spreading invasive species that damage the environment and the economy. The plan, part of a $10.6 billion Coast Guard budget authorization bill, includes provisions sought by environmentalists as well as the cargo shipping industry. They have battled for years over how to regulate disposal of water stored in tanks that is essential for steadying vessels in rough seas but has brought unwanted mussels, fish and even viruses to U.S. waters. Under […]
November 14

11/14/18 – 1 pilot killed, 1 hurt in jet crash at Texas Air Force base

DEL RIO, Texas (AP) — A pilot is dead and another was injured after a training jet crashed at Laughlin Air Force Base in Texas. The base said in a statement on its Facebook page that the T-38C Talon crashed at approximately 7:40 p.m. on Tuesday. The surviving pilot was transferred to Val Verde Regional Medical Center. The pilot’s condition was not immediately known. The names of the pair are being withheld pending notifications of next of kin. The crash is under investigation by a board of officers.
November 14

11/14/18 – N. California fires death toll now at 48; many still missing

CHICO, Calif. (AP) — A message board at a shelter for the many people who fled California’s deadliest wildfire is filled with photos of the missing, as well as pleas for any information about relatives and friends. Authorities on Tuesday reported six more fatalities from the Northern California blaze, bringing the total number of dead so far to 48. They haven’t disclosed the total number still missing, but earlier in the week that figure was more than 200. Butte County Sheriff Kory Honea said a list of the missing would be released soon and that 100 National Guard troops would […]
November 14

11/14/18 – Woman pleads guilty in death of infant in hot Michigan home

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) — A western Michigan woman charged in the death of her 6-month-old son who was left in a car seat in a sweltering home has pleaded guilty to second-degree murder. Twenty-three-year-old Lovily Johnson entered the plea Tuesday. An agreement with prosecutors says she’s expected to get a minimum sentence of 15-25 years in prison. Sentencing is Jan. 10. A Kent County judge declared a mistrial in September after five days of jury deliberations didn’t reach a verdict. The Wyoming, Michigan, woman was charged with child abuse and first-degree murder. Police say Noah Johnson was ignored for […]
November 14

11/14/18 – Wolf taken to Isle Royale National Park this fall dies

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) — A gray wolf relocated this fall from the Minnesota mainland to Isle Royale National Park has died. The male wolf was among four taken to the Lake Superior island park from the Grand Portage Chippewa reservation. It’s part of a multi-year effort to rebuild the Isle Royale wolf population, which has fallen sharply in recent years. Officials said Tuesday that the male wolf’s collar had been sending false mortality signals since it was released on the island, despite evidence the animal was alive and on the move. But late last month, the collar indicated the […]
November 14

11/14/18 – Scientist discusses early report on PFAS contamination

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) — A state scientist says he made recommendations six years ago to his superiors on how to limit exposure in Michigan to contamination from industrial compounds known as PFAS, but received no immediate feedback. Department of Environmental Quality researcher Robert Delaney said Tuesday during a summit of federal, state and local health and environmental officials in Grand Rapids that he sent then-director Dan Wyant a report in 2012. Wyant resigned in late 2015 . The report was made public last year. The state has since created a response team to address the issue and test water […]
November 14

11/14/18 – Registration opens for Michigan women’s outdoor program

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Registration has opened for the winter “Becoming an Outdoors Woman” program in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. The state Department of Natural Resources sponsors the annual event, which is scheduled for Feb. 22-24 in Marquette County. It’s for women ages 18 and older who want to improve their outdoors skills in a relaxed, noncompetitive atmosphere. Instruction is available in activities such as cross-country skiing, archery, winter camping, ice fishing, fly tying, winter biking, wilderness first aid, wood-burning and snowshoeing. Participants stay at the Bay Cliff Health Camp near Big Bay. The $200 registration fee includes all food and […]
November 13

11/13/18 – Northern California fire toll at 42

PARADISE, Calif. (AP) — The dead were found in burned-out cars, in the smoldering ruins of their homes, or next to their vehicles, apparently overcome by smoke and flames before they could jump in behind the wheel and escape. In some cases, there were only charred fragments of bone, so small that coroner’s investigators used a wire basket to sift and sort them. At least 42 people were confirmed dead in the wildfire that has burned the Northern California town of Paradise, making it the deadliest blaze in state history. The search for bodies continued Monday. Authorities said they were […]
November 13

11/13/18 – Amazon to split second HQ between New York, Virginia

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Amazon will split its second headquarters between Long Island City in New York and Crystal City in northern Virginia, according to a person familiar with the plans. The online retailer is expected to make an official announcement later Tuesday. The person was not authorized to speak publicly ahead of that announcement and spoke on condition of anonymity. Amazon has declined to comment. The decision would end an intense competition between North American cities to win Amazon and its promise of 50,000 new jobs. Some locations tried to stand out with stunts, but Amazon made clear that […]
November 13

11/13/18 – Police probe suspected arson at church

KENT COUNTY, MI (Mlive)  – Sheriff’s deputies say a fire at Northview Community Church appears to have been intentionally set. The fire was reported around 10:35 a.m. Monday, Nov. 12, at 4897 Palenque Place. The church sustained significant damage, police said. Plainfield Township firefighters responded and put out the fire. Police asked anyone with information to contact Silent Observer at 774-2345.
November 13

11/13/18 – Laura Cox announces run to lead Michigan Republican Party

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — State Rep. Laura Cox is running to lead the Michigan Republican Party. Cox announced her bid Monday, saying the 2020 presidential election is “right around the corner” and the GOP must start working to win Michigan again for Donald Trump. Chairman Ron Weiser isn’t expected to seek another two-year term when activists vote in February. Cox, who lost her race for state Senate, says she’s a “tough conservative leader who fights hard for our principles.” Also eyeing the leadership position are House Speaker Tom Leonard and Grand Rapids lawyer John Inhulsen. Leonard, who lost his race […]
November 13

11/13/18 – Michigan State says legal pot vote won’t change campus rules

EAST LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Marijuana is becoming legal in Michigan but not at Michigan State University. MSU released a statement Monday, saying the use and possession of marijuana still will be prohibited at any university building or property. Violators will face “legal and disciplinary action.” Voters last week approved the use of marijuana for people 21 and older, a decade after medical marijuana was blessed by voters. The law could kick in before the end of the year, although it will take months or longer for retail pot shops to develop. Communities could ban them. MSU’s statement is similar […]
November 12

11/12/18 – Panel discussion on supercarriers coming to Ford museum

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) — A panel discussion on U.S. supercarriers will be held at the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum in Grand Rapids. Tuesday’s program will feature the documentary “Building Integrity, Building Ford,” which looks at the technology used in the newest class of aircraft carriers. The USS Gerald R. Ford was commissioned last year and is the first of the new Ford class of aircraft carrier. At $13 billion, the carrier is the Navy’s most expensive warship. The USS John F. Kennedy is in production and scheduled for commissioning in 2024. Officials from Newport News Shipbuilders will join […]
November 12

11/12/18 – University of Michigan plans comprehensive concussion center

ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) — Plans call for the University of Michigan School of Kinesiology to create a comprehensive concussion center. The Ann Arbor school says the University of Michigan Biosciences Initiative awarded $5.6 million for the Michigan Concussion Center. The center will seek to answer fundamental questions about concussion prevention, identification, diagnosis, management and outcomes. The School of Kinesiology will have dedicated space for the center in its new building, which is scheduled to be completed in fall 2020. Steven Broglio, a professor of athletic training, will lead the center. Broglio says in a statement he believes the center […]
November 12

11/12/18 – Unemployment Insurance offices offering earlier hours

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — The state’s Unemployment Insurance offices are adjusting their hours as part of an effort to better serve the public. The Talent Investment Agency says office hours in Detroit, Grand Rapids, Lansing and Saginaw are being adjusted based upon feedback that earlier hours are more in demand. Talent Investment Agency Director Wanda M. Stokes says in a statement that the changes will help offer “the best chance for benefit service and reemployment success.” The new office hours of operation now will be from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Mondays and Tuesdays; 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. […]
November 12

11/12/18 – 2 teens suffer burns after tree fort catches fire

SPRING LAKE TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) — Two western Michigan teens have suffered second- and third-degree burns after a tree fort they were sleeping in caught fire. The fire started about 1 a.m. Saturday in Spring Lake Township, northwest of Grand Rapids. Authorities say five teens originally were in the wooden structure which was about two feet off the ground. A fire pit was built inside with cinder blocks. Three of the teens went home. Ottawa County sheriff’s Sgt. Matt Wildfong said the remaining two boys fell asleep on a mattress which caught fire. The fire then spread to the rest […]
November 12

11/12/18 – California wildfire claims more lives

(AP)– At least 29 people have now been confirmed dead in a Northern California wildfire and another 228 are unaccounted for.  Search teams have been working in the town of Paradise, which was largely incinerated last week, as well as the surrounding communities in the Sierra Nevada foothills.  The fires include the Camp Fire, in the northern part of the state.  More than 6,000 structures have been burned, in what’s being called the third deadliest and most destructive fire in California history. Fire officials in Southern California expect to confirm more destroyed homes.  At least 177 homes have been burned […]
November 9

11/9/18 – Safety group: 2018 has been deadly year on Great Lakes

HOLLAND, Mich. (AP) — A water safety nonprofit group says 2018 has been a deadly year on the Great Lakes, with at least 110 drownings recorded. The Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project , which has tracked drowning deaths since 2010, says this is the first year that it’s recorded more than 100 drownings. The Holland Sentinel reports the hot summer may have been a factor in the increase. The deaths include 39 in Lake Michigan and 35 in Lake Erie. The deaths have prompted efforts to increase safety along Great Lakes beaches. Among those who died was 20-year-old Brandon Schmidt, […]
November 9

11/9/18 – School district released from state financial agreement

BENTON HARBOR, Mich. (AP) — A school district in southwestern Michigan is being released from an agreement with the state put in place in 2014 to help improve its finances. State Treasurer Nick Khouri announced Friday that Benton Harbor Area Schools now can focus more on helping students and improving academics through a June agreement with the Michigan Department of Education . A financial review team in 2014 determined that a financial emergency existed in the school district and Gov. Rick Snyder agreed with the team’s findings. That year, the state and Benton Harbor Area Schools entered into a consent […]
November 9

11/9/18 – Fire spreads through a Northern California town

PARADISE, Calif. (AP) — A fast-moving wildfire that ravaged a Northern California town Thursday sent residents racing to escape on roads that turned into tunnels of fire as thick smoke darkened the daytime sky, wiping out what a Cal Fire official said was a couple of thousand structures. Harrowing tales of escape and heroic rescues emerged from Paradise, where the entire community of 27,000 was ordered to evacuate. Witnesses reported seeing homes, supermarkets, businesses, restaurants, schools and a retirement home up in flames. “Pretty much the community of Paradise is destroyed, it’s that kind of devastation,” said Cal Fire Capt. […]
November 9

11/9/18 – AAA: More than 1.7M from Michigan plan Thanksgiving travel

DEARBORN, Mich. (AP) — AAA projects that more than 1.7 million people from Michigan will travel this month for the Thanksgiving holiday. The auto club released its annual forecast on Thursday for people traveling 50 miles (80 kilometers) or more, saying that’s up 5 percent from last year. AAA says it would be the ninth consecutive year of growth for Thanksgiving travel in Michigan and it would be the most travelers since 2007. The estimates say more than 1.5 million of the Michigan travelers plan to go by personal vehicle and AAA notes they’ll see relatively lower gas prices.  Most […]
November 9

11/9/18 – Flags to honor victims of bar shooting

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Gov. Rick Snyder is joining President Donald Trump’s call to lower Michigan and U.S. flags to half-staff through sunset on Saturday to honor the victims of the mass shooting at a bar in Thousand Oaks, California. Michigan residents, businesses, schools, local governments and other organizations are encouraged to display the flag at half-staff. Flags should be returned to full-staff Saturday evening. When flown at half-staff, the U.S. flag should be hoisted first to its peak for an instant and then lowered to half-staff. The flag should again be raised to full staff before being lowered for […]
November 9

11/9/18 – Snyder’s priorities include fees for environmental cleanup

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder says his legislative priorities before leaving office include pushing through fee increases to pay for environmental cleanup, water infrastructure and recycling needs. The Republican governor met with GOP lawmakers Thursday, the beginning of the “lame-duck” period. It’s a final chance for Republicans to enact bills before Democratic Gov.-elect Gretchen Whitmer takes office in January. Snyder also wants to work on a supplemental budget bill. He did not mention minimum wage and paid sick time ballot initiatives the Legislature enacted two months ago, but business groups want the Republican-led Legislature to amend those […]