The county’s Covid-19 snapshot reports 1,472 cases in the two weeks ending yesterday, down from 1,739 last week and back to about where cases stood two weeks ago. There are 198.9 cases per 100,000 residents, down from 261.4 last week. The test positivity rate is down two points to 13.1 percent. The CDC community level will be updated at 8 p.m. tonight.
More than 1,000 survivors of Robert Anderson’s abuse have finalized a $490 million settlement with the U-M, the Michigan Daily reports, after 98 percent of the claimants approved a deal reached in January. Regents’ chair Paul Brown offered a “heartfelt apology” on behalf of the university, adding, “We hope this settlement helps the healing process for survivors.”
Michigan Medicine nurses reached a tentative agreement yesterday, the Detroit Free Press reports. The agreement comes on the heels of the union voting to authorize a work stoppage earlier this month. If it’s ratified, the nurses—who have been working without a contract since June—would see an end to mandatory overtime, competitive wages, and an improved mechanism for enforcing workload ratios.
The Gelman plume cleanup suffered a setback last week, MLive reports. The Michigan Court of Appeals vacated a local court’s order imposing additional requirements, ruling the city and other intervening parties shouldn’t have been permitted to participate informally. Public officials and environmental advocates expressed disappointment in the outcome, which amplified calls to designate the plume an EPA Superfund site.
The Peeping Tom charged earlier this month was arrested again this week, MLive reports. Erric Desean Morton was out on a $100,000 bond after he allegedly planted cameras in public restrooms around town. Police took him back into custody after he allegedly planted more. Now, bond is set at $800,000, and if released Morton will be confined to his home and placed on a GPS tether.
A proposed state constitutional amendment establishing a right to abortion will be on the ballot in November, the Detroit Free Press reports. Jan Schalin reports in the September Observer that Michigan has seen an influx of “abortion refugees” from nearby states that have banned the procedure since the U.S. Supreme Court’s reversal of Roe v. Wade in June. The ballot measure may determine whether Michigan women will face a similar fate.
Local Democrats think this may be the year they break the GOP's hold on the state senate, James Leonard reports in the September Observer. Republicans have controlled the senate since the Reagan era, but Dems Sue Shink and Jeff Irwin say the new, nonpartisan district boundaries have placed their party in its strongest position in a generation.
Ann Arbor’s first director of organizational equity started work Monday. Laura Orta, tasked with leading the city’s diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts, has more than fifteen years of senior-level DEI experience, most recently as director of women's studies and diversity coordinator at CMU.
Someone slipped $20 million for an Ann Arbor riverside development into the state budget, MLive reports. The windfall for developer David Di Rita came as a surprise to local lawmakers, but the influx of cash means that work on the project at 841 Broadway could begin as soon as this fall. Jan Schlain’s 2019 Observer article has the backstory on Di Rita’s plan to redevelop one of the city’s most polluted sites.
A developer proposed an eight-story mixed-use project on the corner of State and Stimson, MLive reports. The development, currently billed as Southtown, would replace an entire block with 250 apartments and green space.
MDOT is looking at potential fixes to the dangerous M-14/Barton Dr. interchange. Options include closing the eastbound ramps entirely, extending the eastbound loop further north, and a “dog bone” design with roundabouts to connect both sides of the highway to Whitmore Lake Rd. Use the contact form at the bottom of the webpage to share your thoughts.
The city is moving toward a ban on red-light turns downtown, MLive reports, Meant to reduce pedestrian crashes, it would prohibit turns on red in the area bounded by First St., State St., Kingsley St., and Hoover Ave. Originally scheduled for action on Monday, it was delayed until Oct. 3 after councilmembers raised concerns that enforcement might disportionately affect wage workers hurrying to clock into work.
Ann Arbor wants $17 million from the federal government to improve street safety, MLive reports. Council this week approved a grant proposal for sidewalk improvements, protected bike lanes, pedestrian signals, and more as part of the city’s Vision Zero plan to eliminate traffic fatalities by 2025. If it’s approved, the city’s share would be $5.5 million over a period of three years.
Seventh St. and Greenview Dr. south of Scio Church Rd. may trade some street parking for bike lanes, MLive reports. The water main and resurfacing project could also include curb bump outs for pedestrian crosswalks and stormwater management in the area near Lawton Elementary.
Ypsi’s leaders are staring down a hefty price tag to renovate the deteriorating Depot Town bridge, MLive reports. If nothing were to be done, the current bridge is expected to close in ten years, but the city can’t afford the best option–an all-new $19.5 million span. Instead, city staff are recommending a $6.24 million replacement of the existing bridge’s superstructure that should last about forty years.
EMU basketball star Emoni Bates was arrested on gun charges last weekend, the Free Press reports. Police discovered a firearm in the car Bates was driving after he was pulled over for failing to stop at an intersection. He is charged with carrying a concealed weapon and altering the identification marks on a firearm, and has been suspended until the case is resolved.
The city’s annual National Community Survey results are in. 2,800 randomly selected residents gave their opinions on city services this summer: 93 percent consider Ann Arbor a good place to live, nine in ten were happy with the natural environment, and parks are well regarded. Sixty-three percent rated the value of services received for taxes paid good or excellent, up 9 points from the last survey in 2020.
Ann Arbor is soliciting feedback about its planned unarmed emergency response unit. The anonymous survey should take under ten minutes and is available until Nov. 4.
Lech Wałęsa called on the United States to resume the mantle of global leadership in a speech at Rackham last week, the Daily reports. In the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the former president of Poland, Solidarity union leader, and Nobel laureate urged America to accept its "God-given role: to lead the world.”
The Wolverines walloped UConn last weekend, 59-0, making use of seven different quarterbacks throughout the game. This Saturday they open the Big 10 season against Maryland at noon at the Big House. Parking by reservation for cars and, for the first time, RVs has been approved at Briarwood Mall during home games.
Veterans Memorial Indoor Ice Arena opened for the season last weekend. Public skate fees are $6 for adults, $5 for youth and seniors, and $3 to rent skates.
Sunday is the tenth annual Harvest Fest at Matthaei Botanical Gardens, ClickOnDetroit reports. Hosted by the U-M sustainable food program and campus farm, the event includes arts and crafts, lawn games, music, and food. For a look at Matthaei through the seasons, read Sarah Royalty Pinkelman’s feature in this year’s Observer City Guide.
U-M held onto its spot as the country’s No. 3 public university in U.S. News and World Report’s annual rankings. Michigan tied with NYU, USC, and the University of Virginia for 25th place overall.
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