Latest Michigan news, sports, business and entertainment at 9:20 p.m. EDT

FIREFIGHTER UNION-EMBEZZLEMENT

Former firefighters union treasurer charged with fraud

DETROIT (AP) — A former treasurer for a Detroit firefighters union has been charged in connection with the embezzlement of more than $220,000 in union funds. The U.S. Attorney’s office in Detroit says 62-year-old Verdine Day was named in a criminal complaint and scheduled to appear in federal court on bank fraud and wire fraud. About $167,900 was fraudulently obtained by checks. More than $52,100 in personal expenses, including airline flights, hotel rooms, cruises and car insurance premiums were charged to union credit cards. Authorities said Day was hired by the fire department in 1986 and worked as a firefighter and engineer. She was elected union treasurer in 2015 and retired from the fire department in 2019. 

NATIONAL POPULAR VOTE-MICHIGAN

Ballot drive: Join Michigan with national popular vote pact

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Michigan would award its 15 electoral votes to the presidential candidate who wins the national popular vote if enough other states also join the pact under a 2022 ballot initiative. The drive was announced Monday by former top leaders in both major political parties. Fifteen states and Washington, D.C., have enacted laws supporting the national popular vote. The movement would be successful when member states account for at least 270 electoral votes. The number now stands at 195. Twice this century, the loser of the popular vote has become president.

AP-US-THREE-DEAD-ARREST-

Michigan man arraigned in fatal shooting of 3 relatives

WINDSOR TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) — A 23-year-old Michigan man suspected of fatally shooting three of his relatives at a house near Lansing has been arraigned on three murder counts. The Eaton County sheriff’s office says Daniel Sougstad was arrested without incident early Saturday. A judge on Monday ordered him held without bond on three counts of open murder and three counts of using a firearm during a felony. Deputies found the bodies of John, Barbara and Ryan Sougstad inside a home in Windsor Township on Friday. Authorities have not described the victims’ relationships to Daniel Sougstad, who lived in the house where their bodies were found.

MISSING WOMAN SEARCH

SUV of 84-year-old missing since May found in Michigan river

MARINE CITY, Mich. (AP) — Police say the vehicle belonging to an 84-year-old Michigan woman missing since May has been found in the St. Clair River with a body inside. The St. Clair County sheriff’s office said divers found the SUV about 30 feet from the shore in Marine City. The vehicle was located Saturday by the volunteer diving group Adventures with a Purpose, which had been contacted by relatives of Nadine Moses of Casco Township. Moses was last seen May 4, with her family saying she had been experiencing memory problems. The SUV was pulled from the river and the body was removed so that authorities could confirm the identity.

AP-US-FORD-ELECTRIC-VEHICLE-JOBS

Ford to add 10,800 jobs making electric vehicles, batteries

GLENDALE, Ky. (AP) — Ford and a partner company say they plan to build three major electric-vehicle battery factories and an auto assembly plant by 2025.  It’s a dramatic investment in the future of EV technology that will create an estimated 10,800 jobs and shift the automaker’s future manufacturing footprint toward the South. The factories will be built on sites in Kentucky and Tennessee. They will make batteries for the next generation of Ford and Lincoln electric vehicles that will be produced in North America. Combined, they mark the single largest manufacturing investment the 118-year-old company has ever made and are among the largest factory outlays in the world.

ENERGY DEAL-DNR

Deal to provide clean energy to 7 Michigan parks, offices

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Michigan’s Department of Natural Resources has signed an agreement to buy energy for seven state parks and offices in southwestern Michigan. The DNR says the deal with South Lyon-based Utopian Power will supply nearly 1 megawatt of clean energy to the parks and offices. It’s also an effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The agency adds that the annual production of installed solar arrays in the southwest region will be enough to power roughly 90 homes or equivalent to reducing about 160 passenger vehicles’ greenhouse gas emissions. The DNR says it also anticipates saving $1.4 million through a discounted utility rate on the 25-year agreement.

PLANE CRASH-MICHIGAN

Maintenance mistake blamed for fatal Michigan plane crash

HOWELL, Mich. (AP) — Federal investigators have determined that a misplaced air filter screen probably caused a small plane’s engine failure and crash in southeastern Michigan that killed a Delta airlines pilot and an aircraft mechanic two years ago. A  National Transportation Safety Board report says the filter became displaced and blocked air into the engine. The plane lost total power and crashed soon after taking off from Livingston County Spencer J. Hardy Airport near Howell. Those killed in the August 2019 crash were 64-year-old pilot Phillip Colmer of Chelsea and 68-year-old James Tafralian of Webberville. Colmer was a Delta airlines pilot. Tafralian was an aircraft mechanic well known in the skydiving community.

ART MUSEUM-STUDENTS

After 19 months, Detroit museum welcoming school field trips

DETROIT (AP) — The Detroit Institute of Arts soon will be welcoming school field trips for the first time since the pandemic began in 2020. Admission and bus transportation is free for all K-12 schools in Wayne, Oakland and Macomb counties. The Institute of Arts is supported by a property tax in those counties. School groups can sign up starting Oct. 12. Before the pandemic, more than 90,000 students a year visited the art museum on field trips. Masks are required. Lunch or snack space cannot be provided.  

HONDA-INDIANA FACTORY

Honda’s Indiana factory adds new model to production line

GREENSBURG, Ind. (AP) — Production has started on a new car model at Honda’s factory in southeastern Indiana. Honda executives, workers and several state officials marked the start of mass production for the 2022 Civic Hatchback at the Greensburg plant during a ceremony this past week. The new Civic Hatchback becomes the third type of vehicle produced at the factory, joining the Honda CR-V compact SUV and the Insight Hybrid sedan. Honda said it spend $50 million on a factory expansion and new equipment for the Civic Hatchback production in Greensburg. The factory now has about 2,700 workers and the capacity to build 250,000 vehicles a year. 

DETROIT BLIGHT

Black-owned Detroit companies get half of demolition funds

DETROIT (AP) — About half of the first demolition funds awarded following a bond proposal approved by Detroit voters have gone to Black-owned businesses based in the city. The city says that, so far, the Detroit Demolition Department, which runs the city’s blight removal program, has awarded $70 million for the abatement and demolition of vacant houses and clearing out structures that will be secured for renovation and sale. Only 10% of all contracts awarded have gone to companies not headquartered in Detroit. Detroit has demolished about 19,000 vacant and abandoned houses since 2014, but most of that work was paid with federal funds which placed restrictions on how contracts were bid and where the structures being torn down were located.