LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   It appears the question of legalizing marijuana in Michigan is headed to the November ballot.

A state elections board has certified the campaign has enough petition signatures to take the next step. That next step is to put the question to the Legislature, which has 40 days to approve it or it goes on the ballot.

But the state House leader says Republicans don’t like the measure, and a vote in the Legislature isn’t likely.

MARQUETTE, MI--   Get out your old and unused medications.

Saturday is National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day. The Drug Enforcement Administration is partnering with all 30 Michigan State Police posts from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The posts will serve as drop-off points for pills, which will be destroyed. No liquids, inhalers, patches, or syringes will be accepted.

Drug Take-Back Day is held twice a year, in April and October. During the October 2017 effort, Michigan State Police posts collected roughly 802 pounds of prescription drugs.

WAUSAU, WI--   Aspirus has been recognized as one of the 15 Top-Performing Health Systems in the country based on overall organizational performance.

The rating comes from IBM Watson Health. Formerly known as Truven Health Analytics 15 Top Health Systems, the study creates a scorecard of measures based on publicly available clinical, operational, and patient satisfaction data. It’s been conducted annually since 2008.

MARQUETTE, MI--   UPHS-Marquette has received an ‘A’ for patient safety from The Leapfrog Group.

The Washington, DC-based organization assigns safety grades to hospitals across the country. The criteria is based on their performance in preventing medical errors, infections, and other harms among patients in their care.

The Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade uses 27 measures of hospital safety data to assign grades to approximately 2,500 U.S. hospitals twice per year. It is peer-reviewed, transparent and free to the public.

MARQUETTE, MI--  Members of the RN Staff Council/Michigan Nurses Association voted over the weekend to authorize another strike at UPHS-Marquette. 

Union officials say Duke LifePoint has done little to correct staffing levels since the strike in October.

The Michigan Nurses Association released the following statement on 4/22/18:

"Over the course of a two-day vote, nurses of the UPHS Marquette RN Staff Council/Michigan Nurses Association (MNA) overwhelmingly voted to authorize a strike.

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   A state licensing board has given a preliminary go-ahead to nine companies that want to go into the medical marijuana business, but it’s a slow start with hundreds of applications pending.

The licenses are for businesses that want to grow, transport, or sell medical marijuana. Applicants are 

concerned the licensing board and the state medical marijuana agency aren’t ready to deal with the workload.

Andrew Brisbo directs the Bureau of Michigan Medical Marijuana Regulation. He says the agency is still learning its job.

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   Some doctors in Michigan are concerned about unintended consequences to their profession if state lawmakers pass some sexual assault bills they’re considering. 

A state House committee heard testimony on a package of bills Tuesday, as lawmakers continued their response to former MSU sports doctor Larry Nassar’s ability to sexually assault female patients for years.

MARQUETTE, MI--   Nurses at UPHS-Marquette are considering if they’ll go on another strike. 

The nurses’ union says it will hold a strike authorization vote Friday and Saturday. Union officials say hospital administration has taken no positive action toward addressing staffing deficiencies since a two-day strike held in October.

FLINT, MI (AP)--   The mayor of Flint says Gov. Rick Snyder rejected her face-to-face plea to reverse his decision ending free bottled water. 

Mayor Karen Weaver met with the governor Monday, 10 days after he said water distribution would end, based on improved water quality. For months, Flint's lead levels have been far below the federal action level.

LANSING, MI (AP)--   State Fire Marshal Kevin Sehlmeyer is checking with departments around Michigan about their use of toxic firefighting foam that may be contaminating groundwater. 

Sehlmeyer is surveying more than 1,000 fire departments about how they use and dispose of foam containing perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS).

Officials are trying to determine how widely the toxic chemicals are used and develop statewide measures to prevent them from causing further pollution.