Associated Press

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The state health department wants to hear how opioid problems have affected Michigan residents. Two online meetings are planned this week. One for the northern Lower Peninsula is on Wednesday, from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. The other is for the Flint area and Thumb region on Friday, from 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. Meetings for other areas in Michigan are planned for later this year. The health department and the Michigan opioids task force will share their 2020 strategy, seek feedback and host a question-and-answer session. Go to for information about how to participate.

Associated Press


A Michigan resident’s apparent joke showing disdain for voting by mail is no laughing matter for one election official. The resident put a toilet on their lawn with a sign that says, “Place mail in ballots here.”

Barb Byrum, the Democratic clerk of Ingham County, filed a complaint with police over the display, saying it could mislead people who aren’t familiar with the voting system.

Holland cops are on the way--in a Tesla

Sep 21, 2020

The Holland Department of Public Safety announced that detectives will soon be driving a $49,000 Tesla Model3. 

HDPS officials say the new wheels are comparable to the Nissan Leaf and the Chevrolet Bolt, (which both cost much less.)

The cost of the Tesla includes a long-lasting battery pack, and enabling the car to travel about 300 miles on a full charge.

The car will mostly be used to drive to crime scenes or conduct interviews, city finance director Tim Vagle said, while test drives, warranty and resale value put the Model 3 ahead of other electric car options.

U.S. postal mailboxes photo / USPS

A judge on Friday cleared the way for more absentee ballots to be counted in Michigan, saying envelopes postmarked by the eve of the Nov. 3 election are eligible, even if they show up days later.

The decision is significant in a state that is anticipating waves of absentee ballots this fall; about 2.3 million have already been requested. For absentee ballots to be counted, Michigan law requires them to be received by the time polls close on Election Day.

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

Michigan authorities say cooler temperatures expected this weekend should help control the spread of a mosquito-borne virus that has infected one person in Barry County and 22 horses in 10 counties. Horses can be vaccinated for the disease, known as eastern equine encephalitis, but there is no equivalent for humans. Authorities said reducing exposure to mosquitoes is the best way of preventing human infection, including insect repellent and wearing long sleeves or pants outdoors.

Voting booths photo

A federal judge has blocked Michigan's longstanding ban on transporting voters to the polls, ruling it conflicts with U.S. election law. District Judge Stephanie Dawkins Davis in Detroit issued an injunction Thursday against enforcing the restriction in November's presidential election. A form of the prohibition has been on the books since 1895. It is a misdemeanor to hire drivers to take voters to polling places unless they physically cannot walk.

Novel coronavirus

Ingham County health officials have identified 11 more large houses near Michigan State University's campus where there are known exposures to the COVID-19 virus. The health department has ordered residents in those houses to quarantine for the next two weeks. Mandatory quarantines now have been ordered for 25 fraternity and sorority houses and 14 large rental houses in East Lansing. On Saturday, the health department said at least a third of the 342 people affiliated with the university testing positive for the virus since Aug. 24 attended parties or social gatherings.

Mark Schlissel University of Michigan photo

The governing board at the University of Michigan is expressing support for President Mark Schlissel, two days after he said trust in his leadership has slipped on campus. Denise Ilitch, chairwoman of the Board of Regents, says the board supports Schlissel and his administration during a time of "tremendous challenges." Schlissel has been criticized for the university's response to the coronavirus. Separately, the school sued to try to stop a strike by graduate-student instructors. A vote by faculty also revealed disappointment with Schlissel.

Big 10 Conference logo
Wikimedia Commons

President Donald Trump was quick to spike the ball in celebration when the Big Ten announced the return of fall football at colleges clustered in some of the Midwest battleground states critical to his reelection effort. But his efforts to reverse last month's decision to postpone fall sports in the conference because of the novel coronavirus were far from the only factor that led officials to change course. The Big Ten was under enormous pressure to restart the season from athletes, parents, coaches and college towns that rely on football Saturdays to provide much needed tax revenue.

Jocelyn Benson photo
Wikimedia Commons

Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson's mass mailing of unsolicited absentee ballot applications to millions of 2020 voters was deemed legal by Michigan's appeals court. Judges ruled 2-1 Wedneday that she has "inherent" authority to act under a 2018 constitutional amendment expanding voting rights. The court upheld a lower judge's decision.