Protesters marched down Washtenaw Ave. to the county sheriff’s office Saturday in honor of George Floyd and other victims of police brutality. Speakers shared personal stories of police brutality in Washtenaw County and Detroit. Click on Detroit. On Wednesday a Minneapolis jury convicted former police officer Derek Chauvin of all charges in Floyd’s killing.
Federal money sought for Gelman plume cleanup. The state is working to add the west-side groundwater contamination to the EPA’s Superfund National Priorities List. EPA officials say that if approved, the federal efforts would likely take several years to begin. Polluter Gelman Sciences has been doing court-ordered remediation for many years, but local governments have been fighting for more aggressive cleanup and monitoring. That case is continuing. MLive
Blood and Gore changed Jonathan Overpeck’s mind. The dean of U-M School of Environment and Sustainability feared the green-energy transition would come too late to prevent a climate catastrophe, until his college roommate Dave Blood visited campus in 2019. Blood, who cofounded Generation Investment Management with former vice president Al Gore, convinced him that green energy is becoming so cheap that without political support, within a decade the fossil-fuel industry will reach a “tipping point” and collapse. The Observer’s James Leonard has our story.
Private sector initiatives, rather than government regulations, may be the key to spurring climate action across the political spectrum, particularly among moderates and conservatives. That’s the finding of research recently published in Energy Research & Social Science by U-M Ford School of Public Policy prof Kaitlin Raimi and others. U-M News.
U-M Women’s gymnastics wins NCAA title. The team beat out Oklahoma by 0.088 to earn the third best score in championship history and the top score in Michigan history. It all came down to junior Abby Heiskell’s beam routine, which had to be practically perfect for the win. It was. Go Blue
The Ann Arbor Housing Commission has reason to celebrate, emails executive director Jennifer Hall, because “all of our resolutions were passed unanimously.” The city will move forward to build affordable housing on the former city maintenance yard at Main and Summit and the closed fire station at Stadium and Packard. The AAHC was also approved to develop the Palio parking lot at Main and William, Hall writes, though a motion to proceed with that project was pulled from the consent agenda by councilmember Ali Ramlawi “to ask about the timeline related to the impact on Main St, with everything else going on there, as well as the community input process moving forward.”
On Monday, city council also unanimously approved Trowbridge Company’s rezoning and site plan for “Near North,” twenty-two market-rate condo townhouses at 700 N. Main St. MLive (subscriber exclusive.) Eight homes on the site were demolished in 2013, after an affordable housing project of the same name was abandoned.
Ann Arbor city councilmember Jeff Hayner has been removed from several boards, committees, and commissions. After Hayner used a homophobic slur to attack journalists, on Monday city council voted 8-2 to strip him of these assignments until the conclusion of the current appointment cycle in December. Last week’s a2view included an incomplete description of the proposed action. MLive (subscriber exclusive)
“I worry that nurses are accumulating these emotional scars,” says Christopher Friese, director of U-M’s Center for Improving Patient and Population Health and co-author of a U-M study just published in JAMA Psychiatry. The retrospective study found that female nurses are twice as likely to commit suicide as women in general. Male nurses commit suicide even more often, but at rates similar to other men. Friese is concerned that “if we don’t address these scars we’re going to place nurses at greater risk for mental health conditions and suicide.” Michigan Radio
Dog licenses, block-party permits, and construction plan approvals are now available online. These and many other licenses, permits, and approvals used to require a trip to City Hall. Ann Arbor just launched STREAM, an online system two years in the making, that lets it all be done remotely.
TheRide wants your input on its long-term public transportation plan. The Ann Arbor Area Transportation Authority’s public advisory group will help shape the future of local public transport. Click here to learn about the plan, and here to apply to join the group (deadline is May 5.)