Government

Michigan to distribute $58.5 million in grants to businesses

Relief is coming to Michigan businesses after a board last week approved $58.5 million in grants for economic losses due to the coronavirus pandemic that has strained the state’s economy. Gov. Gretchen Whitmer last month signed into law a spending plan to help repair the economic impact from the coronavirus. It included an allocation to the Michigan Strategic Fund under the Michigan …

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Small group of armed protesters dwarfed by police at Capitol

A small group of gun-toting demonstrators rallied Sunday outside of Michigan’s Capitol building near a sizable presence of law enforcement officers on high alert after this month’s deadly storming of the U.S. Capitol. About a dozen protesters openly carried guns, including some who promoted the anti-government “boogaloo” movement, a slang term adopted by the pro-gun extremist movement that is a reference to …

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Guard activated at Michigan Capitol amid increased security

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer activated the National Guard, the state police continued to augment its presence at the Capitol and crews installed a 6-foot, chain-link fence around the 142-year-old building before expected protests ahead of President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration. The Legislature on Friday also canceled session next week, citing law enforcement’s concerns about “credible threats regarding events” at the Capitol. Michigan …

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Teen guilty of murder when he was 13 sentenced to 63 years

A teenager who was 13 when accused of killing another youth in northern Indiana was sentenced Thursday to 63 years in prison. Alphonso James III, now 16, was convicted of murder in the death of 18-year-old Jaren Minies in Elkhart on Sept. 12, 2018. Minies was shot multiple times during a dispute over a gun, money and a video game system. He …

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Michigan restaurants likely can offer dining Feb. 1

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said Wednesday she hopes to let restaurants reopen for indoor dining on Feb. 1, as her health department extended a two-month ban by an additional two weeks while letting non-contact sports resume this weekend. The plan is to allow dining with mitigation measures, capacity limits and a curfew. Organized non-contact sports and group exercise classes can start …

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Upton: I will vote to impeach

U.S. Rep. Fred Upton, R-St. Joseph, Tuesday night issued the following statement on impeachment: “Today the President characterized his inflammatory rhetoric at last Wednesday’s rally as “totally appropriate,” and he expressed no regrets for last week’s violent insurrection at the U.S. Capitol. This sends exactly the wrong signal to those of us who support the very core of our democratic …

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Michigan bans open carry of guns inside state Capitol

Michigan has banned the open carry of guns in the state Capitol a week after an armed mob rioted in the U.S. Capitol and following a protest in the statehouse last year. Moves to ban weapons at the statehouse have been pushed since April, when protesters opposed to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s COVID-19 restrictions, some armed with long rifles and other …

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Whitmer: Schools should offer in-person classes by March 1

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is strongly encouraging all K-12 schools in Michigan to reopen for in-person instruction by March 1. She stopped short of requiring it Friday, but said face-to-face classes should at least be an option. Many schools, including in large districts such as Ann Arbor and Grand Rapids, have been fully remote during the coronavirus pandemic. Teachers are among …

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Michigan to begin vaccinating people 65 and older, teachers

Michigan will begin issuing coronavirus vaccines to seniors and front-line workers such as teachers and police next week, state officials said Wednesday while announcing accelerated access for people who are at least 65 years old. The state had planned to next immunize people 75 and older and essential workers including first responders, prison guards and child care providers. But residents …

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Phase 1A COVID vaccinations are underway locally

The Branch-Hillsdale-St. Joseph Community Health Agency has received an initial allotment of Moderna COVID-19 vaccine. Vaccinations began for individuals in Phase 1A priority groups last week, as hospitals in the Branch-Hillsdale-St Joseph counties also received shipments to vaccinate their front-line workers. Communications are taking place directly with these entities, and clinics are not open to the general public at this …

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