Editorial

Lawmakers want do-over on failed schools law

Michigan lawmakers have identified repealing a 2009 law that lets the state take over failing local schools as one of their top priorities of the new session. Sen. Phil Pavlov, a Republican from St. Clair Township, has introduced legislation to repeal the law that allows the state to close or ...

Protect yourself against the flu

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) is reporting an increase in influenza activity across the state and is recommending that residents receive their annual flu vaccine. This week, MDHHS increased the flu activity for the state of Michigan to ‘Regional’ as a result ...

Community helped ‘Stuff a Blue Goose’

This week’s bouquets go to: From: 1st Lt. Gregory S. Cunningham, Michigan State Police Gladstone Post commander: On Dec. 10-11, 2016, troopers from the Michigan State Police Gladstone Post held “Stuff a Blue Goose” events in Escanaba and Menominee. The overwhelming generosity from ...

A persistent threat to peace

Until they learn more about President-elect Donald Trump’s plans, policies and personality, it is likely most other nations, even our enemies, will engage in something of a diplomatic honeymoon with the new White House. Not North Korea. That country’s vicious dictator, Kim Jong Un, ...

Online comments blend fact with fiction

There’s a section in the nearly 600-page 2016 edition of the Associated Press Stylebook — a journalist’s bible to all things writing and reporting — that warns against mistaking the internet for an encyclopedia. The excerpt reads: “The internet is a sprawling information ...

State can’t shrink pension reform

Flint is facing another crisis — but this one doesn’t involve its drinking water. The city’s pension system is severely underfunded and getting worse, and that leaves the future viability of the city uncertain, no matter what happens with its water lines. Flint’s defined benefit ...

New speeds will require all of us to drive better

After they narrowly passing the Legislature in December, Gov. Rick Snyder has signed the bills to raise speed limits on certain Michigan highways. His spokeswoman told the Detroit Free Press that the governor’s office wanted to review which roadways would be affected before deciding whether ...

Stop the spread of fake news

According to a story posted three years ago on nationalreport.net, one Colorado pot shop is accepting food stamps. That’s right, taxpayer-funded marijuana for welfare recipients. Er, wait. That doesn’t sound right. We’ve heard it a thousand times before: Just because it’s on the ...

Thanks for making annual Shop with a Cop a success

This week’s bouquets go to: From: Lt. Todd Tardiff, Delta County Sheriff’s Department Residents of Delta County: The Delta County Sheriff’s Office would like to thank everyone that assisted in making our annual “Shop with a Cop” program a success. The generosity of the ...

Raising speed limits on some roadways makes sense

As long as the scientific study supports it, a package of bills being sent to Gov. Rick Snyder’s desk that would, among other things, increase speed limits on more than 1,000 miles of roadway across the Great Lakes state makes sense to us. The Michigan Legislature on Tuesday approved ...

Energy project efforts long overdue

Something long overdue appears to be happening in Montana. There, a company has been granted a license to construct a $1 billion electric energy project that amounts to a gigantic battery. Absaroka Energy of Bozeman, Mont., plans to build a 400-megawatt pumped storage facility. If completed, ...

Wolf hunt bill ignores voters

Last week, Gov. Rick Snyder signed a law that would once again make it possible to hunt gray wolves in Michigan - if or when the protected animal is removed from the federal endangered species list. The newest law, passed in lame duck session, is another in a growing list of examples of the ...

National debt reduction should be top priority

Both Republicans who control Congress and President-elect Donald Trump have plans to grant most Americans tax relief. They hope to inject real growth into an economy still recovering only anemically from the so-called Great Recession. In reconciling their slightly different versions of tax ...

A victory for common sense

Pensions and retiree health care liabilities are major issues facing the state of Michigan, its municipalities and school districts. The funding gaps are severe in some cases. The status quo will not adequately address the challenges ahead. Change must happen. Yet that change must happen ...

Community Foundation helped many in 2016

This week’s bouquets go to: Charlie Becker, board chair of the Community Foundation For Delta County, announced the foundation’s grant support to benefit the citizens of Delta County in 2016 totaled $893,150. “The total amount of grants made by the community foundation from 1992 ...

Who’s responsible when government fails?

How far up the line will criminal responsibility for the Flint water crisis extend? That’s the question prompted by Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette’s latest round of charges, targeting two former Flint appointees, Howard Croft and Daugherty Johnson, and two ex-emergency managers, ...

Zero tolerance OK for pests, not for kids

There is a place for zero tolerance, but it is not public schools. For a good application of the zero tolerance approach, look to Customs and Border Control at the Blue Water Bridge. In November, agriculture specialists inspecting mung beans exported from India discovered what they thought ...

Michigan takes step toward justice

A bill to compensate wrongfully convicted individuals with $50,000 for each year they spent in prison has now been passed by both legislative chambers and is headed to Gov. Rick Snyder’s desk. It’s a step toward righting the wrong that was done to them by the justice system. There is ...

No better time to quit smoking

With a new year just days away there is no better time for people to adopt a healthy, tobacco-free lifestyle. According to the American Cancer Society, the benefits of quitting smoking are immediate. Within 20 minutes blood pressure drops, and within 24 hours a person’s chance of heart ...

Demand transparency, FOIA now

Government should be transparent. Recent examples of bad government - like the lack of accountability at every level in Flint’s water crisis - show how great a need this can be, as well as how pieces of the truth sometimes only come out after public records are obtained using the Freedom of ...