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House Democrats are vowing to fight plans for the Michigan Senate to move into new office space in downtown Lansing, pointing to projected costs of up to $134 million over three decades as an example of misplaced priorities.
Republican Senate Majority Leader Arlan Meeekhof, interviewed Thursday on WJR-AM 760 in Detroit, called the pending move to the Capitol View Building a "done deal" spearheaded by his predecessor, Randy Richardville, who was term limited out of office at the end of last year.
"The previous Senate Majority Leader went ahead and made this decision, and it's my job to execute it and be as transparent as possible," said Meekhof, R-West Olive.
The reported price tag for the move has risen in recent weeks from an initial purchase price of $51 million. The Michigan Strategic Fund has sold nearly $70 million in bonds to cover the purchase and related costs.
Lease documents, as released by the Senate Business Office land reported by MIRS subscription news service last week, indicate that the total debt service could reach $134 million over 32 years.
For the full article, see Jonathan Oosting, "Michigan House Dems vow to fight new Senate office space projected to cost $134M over 32 years", MLive, March 6, 2015.
Tired of partisan political gridlock? Instead of focusing on Democratic or Republican majorities, maybe it's time to try female majorities.
New research shows why we should actively invite more women to run for elected office. According to Quorum, a legislative research firm founded by two Harvard undergrads, "female members of Congress not only work more frequently with each other but also work more frequently across the aisle, passing more legislation in the Senate than their male colleagues."
Comity and legislative advancement sound like two qualities we could use more of in Lansing. Unfortunately, we don't currently have the numbers of women needed to make that happen.
Of the 148 legislators serving in Lansing, 31 are women. Only four sit in the state Senate. Though this session includes the first Asian-American woman (Rep. Stephanie Chang, D-Detroit) and the first Republican Latina woman (Rep. Daniela Garcia, R-Holland), only eight women of color sit in the Legislature. These numbers matter, especially when women were assigned to a mere 12.5% of legislative committee chairs and no member of the powerful "quadrant leadership" is female. These positions define the lawmaking agenda, decide which bills move and which die, and determine the overall policy priorities for the legislative session.
For the full article, see Shannon Garrett and Dawn Crandall, "Want the Legislature to get more done? Elect more women", Detroit Free Press, March 6, 2015.
Chad Selweski, "Beneath the 'Comeback State'" : Below the surface lies the dark side of Michigan poverty.
Jane Zehnder-Merrell, "Kids Count" : Michigan must do better for poverty-stricken kids.
Tom Watkins, "On May 5th, Vote Yes On Proposal 1" : Fix Michigan's unsafe roads and bridges.
Jack Lessenberry, "Criminals and Hucksters" : Is the GOP attracting unsavory characters?
Billed as America’s greatest hot rod show, Autorama will run through Sunday at the Cobo Center, where it’s been drawing thousands of car fanatics and gearheads since 1961.
For more information, click here.
Also see Source Detroit Metro Convention & Visitors Bureau.
Henry Payne, "Autorama hubba hubba", Detroit News, March 6, 2015.
Lidstrom, a Swede nicknamed the Perfect Human, retired in 2012 after a 20-year career during which he won four Stanley Cups and seven Norris Trophies, including one in his penultimate season at age 41.
“When (general manager) Ken Holland told me that Mr. (Mike) and Mrs. (Marian) Ilitch wanted to retire my jersey, I tried to put the honor in context,” Lidstrom told a sold-out Joe Louis Arena crowd Thursday night before the Red Wings lost to the Avalanche, 3-2 in overtime. “It’s not like winning a trophy for a successful season or a playoff. It’s not like winning an individual trophy. This is something different.
“This is about being a Detroit Red Wing.”
The Red Wings also made the playoffs every year Lidstrom played.
“Simply the best,” Holland said during the hour-long ceremony that pushed the game back to 8:30 p.m.
Described as a humble role model by those who know him, Lidstrom becomes just the seventh Red Wings player to have his number retired and the first defenseman. The other numbers in the rafters are Steve Yzerman’s 19, Terry Sawchuk’s 1, Alex Delvecchio’s 10, Ted Lindsay’s 7, Sid Abel’s 12 and Gordie Howe’s 9.
Lidstrom finished his career second among Red Wings in games played (1,564), first in plus/minus (450), third in assists (878) and fourth in points (1,142).
For the full article, see Josh Katzenstein, "Red Wings honor Nicklas Lidstrom, 'simply the best'", Detroit News, March 6, 2014.
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