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Latest Michigan news, sports, business and entertainment at 9:20 p.m. EDT


Detroit voters OK commission to consider reparations

DETROIT (AP) — The city of Detroit will put together a commission to consider some form of reparations for residents. More than 80% of residents who cast ballots in Tuesday’s general election voted in favor of a proposal to form the commission that will recommend housing and economic development programs for the majority Black city. Anita Belle, president of the Detroit-based Reparations Labor Union, says the destruction of historically Black neighborhoods in the name of urban renewal, and discriminatory lending and rental practices aimed to keep Blacks out of what then were mostly white neighborhoods are some reasons why reparations are needed in Detroit. Detroit now joins other U.S. cities that are mulling some form of repayment to descendants of African slaves.


Pilot dies in small plane crash in central Michigan

HAYES TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) — A 67-year-old Detroit-area man has died following a small single-engine plane crash in central Michigan. Clare County sheriff’s deputies responded about 9:30 a.m. Friday to the crash in Hayes Township, about 188 miles northwest of Detroit. The victim has been identified as Theodore Gauthier of Pontiac. Authorities say Gauthier was the pilot and the only person on the plane. The crash was under investigation.


Oakland County launches mitigation program for invasive moth

PONTIAC, Mich. (AP) — Oakland County wants to slow and mitigate the spread of invasive moths that as caterpillars can denude entire forests of leaves. The county’s Moth Suppression Program is aimed at Lymantria dispar which is the scientific name for gypsy moths. The county says the program will provide grants to cities, villages and townships. Funding will be awarded on a first-come, first-served basis, and municipalities are required to participate in training before applying for the grants. Trainings on egg mass surveying are scheduled Tuesday in Rochester Hills and Nov. 17 in Oxford.


Suspension upheld for doctor in medical marijuana case

BALDWIN, Mich. (AP) — The Michigan appeals court affirmed a two-year suspension for a doctor who approved nearly 22,000 medical marijuana certificates in a 12-month period. An expert says it would have been impossible for Dr. Vernon Proctor to conduct exams, obtain medical histories and take other necessary steps for that many patients. He has an office in Baldwin, 75 miles north of Grand Rapids. People seeking to use medical marijuana need approval from a doctor when they apply for a state card. During a state enforcement hearing, Proctor disputed that he had approved about 22,000 certifications. He said it was more than 1,000.


Whitmer vetoes scholarship plan critics liken to vouchers

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has vetoed Republican-backed bills to create a scholarship accounts for K-12 students to pay for educational expenses, including private school and tutoring, and give tax credits to people and corporations that donate to the program. The veto, which was expected, comes the same week proponents of the legislation launched a ballot drive to enable the GOP-led Legislature to enact identical citizen-initiated bills without her signature. The Democratic governor says the bills would cut state revenue by as much as $500 million in 2022. School-choice proponents say the funds would help kids who fell behind during the pandemic.


Michigan to pay $300K to only staffer fired over Flint water

DETROIT (AP) — The state of Michigan says it will pay $300,000 to the only employee who was fired as a result of lead-contaminated water in Flint. Liane Shekter Smith was head of the state’s drinking water division in 2014-15 when Flint switched its water source and didn't use corrosion control additives. As a result, lead leached from old pipes. An arbitrator recently said Shekter Smith was wrongly fired by officials who were likely looking for a scapegoat during the scandal. The arbitrator awarded about $192,000 in back pay and other compensation, but Michigan agreed to pay even more to close off any possible appeals and end the dispute.


Search is active for missing student who was visiting MSU

EAST LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Authorities a week later still are searching for a college student who was last seen visiting friends at Michigan State University. Foul play is not suspected in the disappearance of 18-year-old Brendan Santo. Santo is from Rochester Hills in suburban Detroit and attends Grand Valley State University in western Michigan. Santo was on the MSU campus around midnight on Oct. 29. Police believe he was on foot; his car has been located. The search has focused on the Red Cedar River, which flows through campus, though police say they're checking “other possibilities.”


Former US congresswoman Barbara-Rose Collins dies at 82

DETROIT (AP) — Barbara-Rose Collins, who represented Detroit in Congress and served on its City Council, has died after contracting COVID-19. She was 82. The Detroit News reports that Collins’ family confirmed her death Thursday to the newspaper. Christopher Collins said his mother had been vaccinated against the coronavirus, but still fell ill and was hospitalized before her death. Barbara-Rose Collins, a Democrat, was elected to the U.S. House in 1990 after eight years on the City Council. She was defeated for reelection to Congress in 1996 by Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick. She was elected again to the council in 2001 and served until 2009 when she did not seek reelection.


Michigan will no longer tax tampons, other feminine products

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Michigan will no longer apply the 6% sales tax to tampons and other feminine hygiene products under legislation signed by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. The change will take effect in early February. Supporters of the bill signed Thursday say the products are a necessity, not a luxury, and should be exempt from taxation like other medically necessary prescriptions and items. About 15 states with sales taxes do not tax menstrual products. The law will reduce state sales and use tax revenue by roughly $6.3 million a year, a sliver of Michigan’s $11 billion in annual sales and use tax collections.


Township treasurer under fire for calling Black CFO 'boy'

MOUNT MORRIS TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) — Some residents of a Michigan community are calling for its treasurer to resign after she acknowledged referring to a Black official as a “boy.” MLive-The Flint Journal reports that a small group of people protested Thursday outside Mount Morris Township offices near Flint and 78 miles northwest of Detroit. The newspaper says Treasurer Gayle Armstrong told the newspaper she called township Chief Financial Officer Greg Eason a “boy” during a conversation with township Supervisor Jolena Sims. The word “boy,” when referring to Black men is considered derogatory. Armstrong, who is white, said it wasn’t meant as a racial slur.

News from © The Associated Press, 2021
The Associated Press

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