Current State #3 | January 16, 2013

Jan 16, 2013

On today's Current State: MPRN's Rick Pluta previews Governor Snyder's "State of the State" address, Ingham County's eviction prevention program, Neighbors in Action with the Allen Neighborhood Center, and Michigan's role in the Civil War.

'State of the State' preview with MPRN's Rick Pluta

Thousands gathered at the capitol on December 11, 2012 to protest Governor Rick Snyder's signing of so-called 'right-to-work' legislation.
Credit Joe Linstroth/WKAR

Governor Rick Snyder had a contentious 2012, highlighted by the December protest in which thousands descended on the capitol to voice their displeasure for the so-called "right-to-work" legislation. His reworking of the emergency manager laws and tighter restrictions on abortion clinics also drew considerable public ire.

Michigan Public Radio Network's managing editor Rick Pluta previews Governor Snyder's "State of the State" address which is tonight.

Ingham County and MSU team up to prevent evictions

MSU College of Law Housing Clinic has partnered with Ingham County to help tenants avoid eviction and homelessness.
Credit (Wikimedia Commons)

A recently launched eviction diversion program in Ingham County aims to help good tenants stay in their rental properties if they’ve fallen on hard times and can’t afford their rent.  The collaborative program involves 55th District Court in Mason, various social service agencies and the Michigan State University Housing Law Clinic.  Ingham County DHS Director Su’Alyn Holbrook and Michael Siracuse, a public interest fellow at MSU's College of Law, discuss the program.

Neighbors in Action: Allen Neighborhood Center

Volunteers are crucial to the success of Allen Neighborhood Center, which works in Lansing's Eastside neighborhood.
Credit Courtesy of the Allen Neighborhood Center

Starting today, and every Wednesday, our segment Neighbors in Action will feature a person or organization that is working to make our community a better place.

This is a listener-generated segment, meaning that each week, the person or organization we feature will be nominated by one of our listeners. For nominations, please send an email to, include “Neighbors in Action” in the subject line and tell us about the person or organization.

Today’s segment features the Allen Neighborhood Center, a non-profit agency that focuses on health, housing and economic development in Lansing’s Eastside neighborhood.  Director Joan Nelson shares the organization's story and tells listeners how they can get involved.

Michigan's crucial role in the Civil War -- Part 2

"Thank God for Michigan." Those were the words of President Abraham Lincoln as he watched Michigan men arrive by train in the early days of the American Civil War.  Michigan soldiers were the first to make their way east from the Western states.

The state of Michigan sent 90,000 men to war, nearly a quarter of its male population. Approximately one in six died in service. The entire first graduating class of the Michigan Agricultural College was excused early so that they could join the Union Army.

Life and death in the Civil War is currently on display in the exhibition "Michigan in the Civil War" at the MSU Museum. The exhibit marks the ongoing Sesquicentennial of the War Between the States. Drawn from the museum's historic collection, the exhibit highlights our state's connections to America's bloodiest conflict. Uniforms, weapons, camp goods, medical equipment, even some surviving Civil War hardtack are all included.

WKAR's Peter Whorf joins MSU history professor Roger Rosentreter for Part Two of his tour. Part One aired yesterday.