Here is the latest Michigan news from The Associated Press at 8:40 a.m. EDT
LANSING, Mich (AP) — Early voting for the 2020 general election is underway in Michigan under expanded voting rights that allow any resident to request an absentee ballot. The state says that nearly 2.4 million residents have already requested ballots amid concerns about the coronavirus pandemic. With 40 days until the Nov. 3 election, residents are encouraged to turn in their ballots early to avoid any mail delays. People can also vote early in person and on Election Day. Lansing City Clerk Chris Swope said about 30 people came to one of the city’s locations to vote on the first day of early voting.
LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Leaders at Michigan’s three largest research universities say online classes will likely last for the entire academic year, keeping many students out of classrooms until next fall. The presidents of the University of Michigan, Michigan State University and Wayne State University spoke during a Lansing Economic Club event Thursday. Mark Schlissel of U-M said the development of coronavirus vaccines will be important in any broad return to in-person instruction. About 20% of U-M classes now are in-person. M. Roy Wilson of Wayne State in Detroit said the winter semester will look like the current term. Samuel Stanley Jr. at MSU says he’ll be watching how other colleges perform with in-person classes.
LANSING, Mich. (AP) — More than 462,000 acres have been sprayed from the sky to prevent the spread of Eastern equine encephalitis in Michigan. The state health department says no additional treatment is planned. The illness has been confirmed in one person in Barry County as well as 30 horses and two deer. Another case in a human is suspected in Montcalm County. EEE is one of the most dangerous mosquito-borne diseases in the U.S. It can be fatal and often leaves survivors with brain damage. The affected counties are Allegan, Barry, Calhoun, Clare, Ionia, Isabella, Jackson, Kent, Livingston, Mecosta, Montcalm, Newaygo and Oakland.
LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Michigan lawmakers have voted to make it easier for clerks to process a surge in absentee ballots in the battleground state’s presidential election by letting them start a day earlier than usual. Officials currently cannot remove ballots from outer envelopes until 7 a.m. on Election Day, which is Nov. 3 this year. The legislation would let them be opened between 10 a.m. and 8 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 2, in cities or townships with at least 25,000 residents. Ballots would have to remain in secrecy envelopes until being counted on Nov. 3. The Republican-led Legislature passed the bill overwhelmingly Thursday.