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Ann Arbor is aiming at 150 more deer. The city council approved a plan to kill deer that are living in parks and natural areas and on some private land. Nearly 400 have been killed since hunters were hired in 2016. The Ann Arbor News says the next hunt will start in January after a 9-2 vote Monday. A critic, council member Jeff Hayner, questioned the practice and said it's a waste of $150,000.

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In the wake of a lung disease epidemic related to vaping products that has taken over 40 lives nationwide, the American Lung Association (ALA) is calling out the Food and Drug Association (FDA)  for not regulating e-cigarette companies. According ot the ALA, vaping is dangerous, plain and simple, while the industry is flooded with products and oils that are unregulated. The result is hundreds of cases of lung disease across the nation, including another death just this past Monday in Louisiana.

Picture of turkey drop 2018
meltrotter.org

Now in its 16th year, it’s time once again for Mel Trotter Ministries annual “Turkey Drop”.  The goal is to collect turkeys and coats for those in need.  The Turkey Drop takes place tomorrow

U.S. Army | via Wikimedia

  A former Marine who was imprisoned by Iran on suspicion of spying is seeking payment from a fund intended for victims of state-sponsored terrorism.

Attorney Scott Gilbert says he filed the lawsuit Monday in federal claims court on behalf of Amir Hekmati.

Hekmati was born in Arizona and raised in Michigan. He was detained in 2011 and released in 2016 in a prisoner exchange. Hekmati alleges he was falsely imprisoned and tortured.

Mosquito bite
CDC Public Health Image Library (PHIL) via Wikimedia | Public Domain / Wikimedia.org

  Michigan health authorities are reporting a 6th fatality linked to Eastern Equine Encephalitis.

Berrien County Health Department officials said Monday the victim was one of two people who contracted the mosquito borne virus. The death occurred Saturday.

Cases of Eastern Equine Encephalitis first appeared in West Michigan at the end of August. The virus has been reported in Barry, Berrien, Calhoun, Cass, Kalamazoo and Van Buren counties. The outbreak has resulted in 10 human cases and 46 animal cases.

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According to the largest U.S. advocacy group for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people,  22 transgender or gender non-conforming people have been fatally shot or killed by other violent means in 2019 and this number is most likely an undercount according to the Human Rights Campaign. 

While Trans day of Remembrance cannot bring any of those killed back to life, Thomas Pierce, who heads the Grand Rapids Pride Center, says its an opportunity to recognize the lives that were lost to violence. 

Jocelyn Benson photo
Wikimedia Commons

A new state policy makes it faster and easier for people to get a Michigan ID or driver’s license that matches their gender identity.

       The rule is effective today.

Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson ordered the new rule. It says people will no longer have to show a new passport, an amended birth certificate, or a court order to change the designated gender on a state I-D.

“People who would like to correct their sex designations on their IDs will only need to complete a form, come into a branch office, and have their photo taken.”

Coats for Kids

With the cold winter months upon us, students at a local elementary school are getting free winter coats on Tuesday. Molina Healthcare of Michigan is behind the giveaway, as students from Grand Rapids Public Schools’ Buchanan Elementary will get their pick out of  350-brand-new coats and winter accessories.

The United Auto Workers union has begun to focus bargaining on Fiat Chrysler, raising the possibility of another strike against a Detroit automaker.
     Ford workers ratified their contract Friday night, while the union settled with General Motors last month after a 40-day strike that shut down the company's U.S. production.
     Ford mostly followed the pattern agreement set at GM. Industry analysts say that deal will cost Fiat Chrysler a lot more money because of the makeup of its workforce.

Governor Gretchen Whitmer is in Israel this week. This is Whitmer’s first international trip as governor.

Governor Whitmer’s week-long trip will focus on Michigan’s ties to Israel’s startups and mobility companies. The goal is to help Michigan compete for tech jobs that pay well.

As a result, Whitmer will travel between Bethlehem, Tel Aviv, and Jerusalem to meet with government, business, and nonprofit leaders.

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