Government

WASHINGTON (AP) — A Senate committee has approved a bipartisan deal to offer federal aid to Flint, Michigan, where lead-contaminated pipes have resulted in a public health emergency.
The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee approved a $220 million aid package as part of a broader bill that authorizes water-related projects across the country for flood control, harbor deepening and other purposes.
The bill was approved 19-1 on Thursday. It could come up for a Senate vote in May.

michigan.gov

  LANSING, Mich. (AP) — An online system for Michigan residents who want to renew a driver's license or get other services is down through late Saturday.
Secretary of State Ruth Johnson says ExpressSOS.com needs maintenance. Another online system is available, but it only allows renewal of license plate tabs and boat registrations.
Johnson says the maintenance issue is related to long-running problems with a new computer system that wasn't completed. She says her staff still is looking for a replacement.

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — The mayor of Flint has met with a key Senate leader to renew her call for quickly replacing the city's lead pipes and dispel "misconceptions" that she's planning to sue Michigan over contaminated water. Karen Weaver met with Senate Majority Leader Arlan Meekhof on Wednesday.

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — The interim director of Michigan's Veterans Affairs Agency is dropping the temporary tag. James Redford was named director Wednesday, two months after he replaced Jeff Barnes in the wake of a troubling audit at the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans. Redford is a former Kent County judge and was Gov. Rick Snyder's chief lawyer before moving to the agency in February.

  LANSING, Mich. (AP) — The Michigan House has approved a $38.8 billion budget bill that would boost spending on road construction, dental coverage for low-income teens and the state attorney general's criminal investigation into the Flint water crisis.
Big-ticket new spending approved 76-32 Wednesday includes the state's share of Medicaid expansion costs under the federal health care law and expenses associated with providing expensive specialty drugs to people with Hepatitis C or cystic fibrosis.

wgntv.com

  LANSING, Mich. (AP) — In proposing a tougher limit for lead in drinking water, Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder wants to lift his state from the depths of the Flint crisis to being a national model for lead monitoring.
Snyder's idea would cut the lead limit from 15 parts per billion to 10 parts. He says the proposal could also help assess whether current lead rules are too lax.

LANSING, MI (AP)--   A new law makes it illegal to post sexually explicit videos or photos to coerce, threaten or intimidate the person who's depicted. 

Gov. Rick Snyder is out of the country. Lt. Gov. Brian Calley signed legislation Tuesday to stop people from posting what's known as "cyber revenge" or "revenge porn." Sponsors in the Legislature say the practice is often meant to shame or humiliate the person depicted.

LANSING, MI (AP)--   A bill advancing in Michigan's Legislature may set the stage for setting a legal limit for driving under the influence of marijuana. 

The House voted 107-1 Tuesday to create a commission to research and recommend a threshold of THC bodily content that would constitute evidence of impaired driving. THC is the component of marijuana responsible for the drug's effects.

Unlike other Schedule 1 drugs, THC can be detected in the body long after it no longer affects someone's driving ability.

LANSING, MI (AP)--   The Michigan House has approved a $16.2 billion education spending plan with more money for school districts, public universities and community colleges.  

The budget bill OK'd 72-36 Tuesday is the first to clear either chamber.

It would boost K-12 spending by $60 to $120 depending on the district. Fifteen public universities would see an overall 3.4 percent funding increase.

LANSING, MI (AP)--   A legislative committee created to review Flint's water crisis will hear next from top-ranking leaders in Governor Rick Snyder's administration. 

Department of Environmental Quality interim Director Keith Creagh and Department of Health and Human Services Director Nick Lyon are among those scheduled to testify Monday in Lansing.

Pages