Latest Michigan news, sports, business and entertainment at 11:20 a.m. EDT
AAA: Michigan gas prices down 10 cents to $2.82 per gallon
DEARBORN, Mich. (AP) — AAA Michigan says average gas prices statewide are down about 10 cents from a week ago to about $2.82 per gallon.
The Dearborn-based auto club says Monday the average price for self-serve regular unleaded is about 6 cents less than a year ago and marks the first weekly decrease in over two months.
Still, AAA says more increases are expected this spring.
The state’s highest average was about $2.90 a gallon in the Marquette area. The lowest was about $2.75 in the Flint and Grand Rapids areas.
Prices in the Detroit area were about $2.83 per gallon, down about 6 cents from a week ago.
AAA Michigan surveys daily fuel prices at 2,800 gas stations across the state.
CIVIL RIGHTS WEBSITE-DETROIT
Website aimed at preserving Detroit’s civil rights history
DETROIT (AP) — An activist and a researcher are launching a website aimed at preserving the stories of Detroit’s civil rights movement.
The online historical and educational resource is called Rise Up Detroit. It represents the efforts of Junius Williams, founder of Rise Up North, and Peter Blackmer, a project researcher and research fellow at Wayne State University’s Detroit Equity Action Lab.
Rise Up Detroit is scheduled to officially launch with a kickoff event May 14 at Wayne State’s David Adamany Undergraduate Library. The program is expected to include a discussion with civil rights veterans and experts.
The university says in a release Rise Up North was created to share “black freedom struggles” in the major urban centers of the northern U.S. The Detroit effort follows one in Newark, New Jersey, where the project began.
For more stories about the 1967 riots in Detroit and Newark: https://www.apnews.com/1967Riots
WIND FARM CANCELED
Plans canceled for wind farm in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula
L’ANSE TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) — A company says it’s not moving forward on plans for a wind farm in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula due to factors including delays in the planning process.
Renewable Energy Systems recently announced that it’s decided to stop development of the Summit Lake Wind Farm project in Baraga County’s L’Anse Township. A release from the company says the project, which was proposed last year, no longer made sense financially and logistically.
The company had proposed a wind energy facility with 49 turbines, each almost 500 feet (152 meters) tall.
Plans for the wind farm faced opposition by some including the group Friends of the Huron Mountains, which welcomed the update on the project’s cancellation.
MARQUETTE-RECORD COLD STREAK
Weather Service: Marquette breaks record of days under 60
MARQUETTE, Mich. (AP) — The National Weather Service says the Upper Peninsula city of Marquette has set a chilly record by going nearly 200 straight days without the temperature reaching at least 60 degrees (15.5 degrees Celsius).
The weather service in Marquette reported Thursday that the Lake Superior port city had gone 197 days without reaching 60 degrees (15.5 degrees Celsius), breaking the previous record of 196 days set in 1970.
Jim Salzwedel is observation program leader with the weather service’s Marquette bureau. He said Sunday that the city’s cold streak ended at 198 days on Saturday, when the temperature reached 65 degrees (18.3 Celsius) in Marquette.
Before Saturday, the last time it had reached 60 degrees (15.5 degrees Celsius) in Marquette was last Oct. 3.
Marquette’s weather service observations go back to 1962.
Judge declines to suppress man’s confession in 2017 murder
(Information from: The Grand Rapids Press:MLive.com, http://www.mlive.com)
ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) — A Michigan judge has declined to suppress a man’s murder confession, rejecting his attorney’s arguments that it should be thrown out because his client was high when police interviewed him.
Twenty-year-old James Freeman is charged with murder in Deandr’e Willingham’s fatal October 2017 shooting.
Freeman confessed to the killing during an interview with a detective for the Washtenaw County Sheriff’s Office, but Freeman’s attorney argued his client had taken Xanax and cocaine beforehand and was unable to waive his Miranda rights to speak with police.
MLive.com reports that Washtenaw County Trial Court Judge Darlene O’Brien viewed a video of Freeman’s police interview and found that it showed him voluntarily, knowingly and intelligently giving a statement.
O’Brien recently declined to suppress Freeman’s statements and a letter he wrote to Willingham’s family.
Casey lobbies for Democratic primary debate in Pennsylvania
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Democratic U.S. Sen. Bob Casey of Pennsylvania is lobbying for a presidential primary debate in his home state, which is a projected battleground in the 2020 presidential election.
Casey’s letter Monday to Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez says holding a primary debate in Pennsylvania would benefit the party in a state that holds great electoral importance to Democrats.
Casey said Democrats can’t afford to lose Pennsylvania if they hope to beat President Donald Trump, after Trump in 2016 became the first Republican to win Pennsylvania since 1988.
Casey described Trump’s victory as a “wake-up call” and said a debate in the politically divided state would help Democrats.
The DNC is planning a dozen debates, and has announced two locations — starting with Miami this June and Detroit in July.
Michigan’s Dragon trail to begin construction this year
(Information from: The Muskegon Chronicle, http://www.mlive.com/muskegon)
BIG PRAIRIE TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) — A new trail in western Michigan that developers believe could become a national attraction is set to break ground this year.
The Muskegon Chronicle reports that construction on Michigan’s Dragon at Hardy Dam trail in Newaygo and Mecosta counties could begin by this summer.
From an aerial view, the 47-mile (76-kilometer) hiking and biking trail encircles a dam-formed pond that resembles the shape of a dragon. The pond is part of the Muskegon River that pooled above the dam.
The planned trail will pass through untamed terrain, campgrounds and marinas. It will also include 13 scenic overlooks and 20 footbridges.
The trail is expected to be complete in 2022, pending approval from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. The commission regulates the trail property’s owner, Jackson-based utility Consumers Energy.
International conference to feature Detroit design projects
DETROIT (AP) — Detroit’s beautification efforts and the city’s experiences with other urban design projects are expected to be part of a June international conference in Italy.
Design Core Detroit says a delegation will discuss the nonprofit’s report on inclusive design in Fabriano, Italy, during the annual meeting of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization Creative Cities Network.
The nonprofit’s report tracks the progress of 62 design projects, including efforts to improve a neighborhood by commissioning residents for art and beautification projects.
Detroit is among 31 cities focused on using creativity as a driver for sustainable and equitable development as part of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network.
Design Core Detroit Executive Director Olga Stella says inclusive design is “moving our great city forward, ensuring that no community is left out.”
COMMUNITY FORUM-UTILITY PLANS
Community forum scheduled for UP utility’s service plans
ESCANABA, Mich. (AP) — A forum will be held in Escanaba to get residents’ input on a utility’s long-term service plans in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.
Sessions are scheduled May 17 at Bay de Noc Community College and will include presentations on Upper Peninsula Power’s integrated resource plan that’s pending before the Michigan Public Service Commission.
The commission says utility-developed integrated resource plans are required under Michigan’s energy laws to map out how companies will meet their customers’ future electric needs.
Public Service Commission Chair Sally Talberg says the forum gives those served by the utility a chance to express their views and talk with commissioners and commission staff.
Formal comments will become part of the public record. A transcript of the comments will be filed in the case docket.
5-year-old Michigan boy calls 911 to ask for McDonalds
(Information from: WZZM-TV, http://www.wzzm13.com)
WYOMING, Mich. (AP) — A 5-year-old Michigan boy had a craving for McDonald’s but his grandmother was sleeping so he called 911 and made a request.
WZZM-TV in Grand Rapids reports Iziah Hall of Wyoming asked the dispatcher: “Can you bring me McDonald’s?” Dispatcher Sara Kuberski says she told him no but reached out to the police.
Wyoming police officer Dan Patterson says the April 14 request made him laugh, so he stopped at McDonald’s on his way to check on Iziah’s home in the western Michigan city.
Patterson says he thought, “I’m driving past McDonald’s on my way there and I might as well get him something.” The officer says the first thing the boy said to him was, “My grandma’s gonna be so mad, can you please go away?”