State Roundup

Muskegon
Well-known W. Mich. prosecutor will join defense

MUSKEGON, Mich. (AP) — Tony Tague (Tag) — for the defense?
Muskegon County’s longtime prosecutor didn’t seek re-election after more than 20 years of putting criminals behind bars in western Michigan. He tells the Muskegon Chronicle that he’ll become a defense attorney in the new year.
Tague says the criminal justice system runs better when there are “passionate” people on both sides of the courtroom. He puts himself in that category. Tague says he’s eager to get back into the courtroom after leading the prosecutor’s office.
Tague is well-known in western Michigan and often appeared on television to discuss high-profile cases.

Addison Twp.
DTE Energy sues customers who removed meter

ADDISON TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) — DTE Energy is suing owners of an Oakland County home who removed a new electricity meter.
Lillian Cusumano says she had flu-like symptoms and a “stabbing headache” after the so-called smart meter was installed at her Addison Township home more than a year ago. Her husband Dominic tells The Macomb Daily he put the old meter back on the house.
Smart meters allow utilities to monitor electricity use without sending a reader to each house. DTE denies that the high-tech meters are a health threat. The company is proposing a one-time charge of $87 and $15 monthly fees for customers who don’t want them.
The lawsuit in Oakland County court is on hold while state regulators consider DTE’s opt-out policy.

Lansing
Online portal to replace Michigan government TV

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — The state is changing how people can keep an eye on the Michigan government.
The Michigan Department of Technology, Management and Budget and Michigan Government Television are launching an enhanced online portal to replace the MGTV cable channel.
In the past, MGTV has operated as a non-commercial cable channel providing programming from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Mondays through Fridays. Beginning in January, MGTV will transition from being a cable channel to become the new MiTV online portal.
The online portal is scheduled to launch Jan. 1. The state says the cable channel will no longer be available beginning in mid-January.
A newly appointed MiTV board will replace the MGTV board to act as an oversight body.

Detroit
Court: Bicyclist hit by SMART bus in 2007 can’t sue

DETROIT (AP) — A man who was struck by a Detroit-area bus while riding a bicycle won’t get his day in court after the Michigan Supreme Court threw out his lawsuit.
There seems to be no dispute that a SMART bus hit Mark Smith while he was riding a bike in Dearborn in 2007. He says he suffered bruises, abrasions and severe neck pain.
The bus agency was aware of Smith’s injuries because he was interviewed twice by an insurance representative. But the Supreme Court says that’s enough. The court dismissed the lawsuit last week because Smith failed to file a written claim within 60 days.
The state appeals court had ruled in favor of Smith in 2010, saying he had substantially complied with the notice requirement.

Rockford
Conn. shooting prompts security review in Michigan

ROCKFORD, Mich. (AP) — A Grand Rapids-area district plans to double state-required lockdown drills at its schools following a shooting rampage that left 20 elementary students dead in Newtown, Conn.
Rockford Public Schools is looking to hold four drills each year, Superintendent Michael Shibler told MLive.com.
Michigan law requires each school to have at least two annual lockdown drills. Security measures include actions to take if someone with a gun is in or near a school.
“The code red training and drills is far more important in saving lives if tragedy should occur than any other measures,” Shibler said. “The Newtown teachers and administrators saved hundreds of lives because of the training and drills they went through.”
Authorities in Connecticut say 20-year-old Adam Lanza killed his mother before before driving to Friday into Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown on Friday and opening fire on students and staff. Six adults also were killed, including the school’s principal and psychologist. Lanza then shot and killed himself.
A security committee will be assembled in the Rockford district, north of Grand Rapids in western Michigan.

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