Lansing mayor Virg Bernero is presenting his proposed 2013 budget to the city council. Last November, voters approved a public safety millage that enabled the city to reduce its projected deficit to between $5 million and $7 million -- roughly half of what it was last year. But to close the remaining gap, the mayor’s plan asks many city employees to either take up to 26 days off without pay or pay more for their health insurance and pensions. Mayor Bernero tells WKAR’s Kevin Lavery that the furlough days are on a sliding scale.
Michigan is one of 26 states challenging federal health care reforms in a case that is going before the U. S. Supreme Court. But there is also a stalemate in state government over moving ahead with an online healthcare exchange that is part of the law that would help consumers shop for coverage.
Record-breaking warm temperatures this spring have coaxed fruit trees and other perennial crops in Michigan to bud weeks ahead of schedule. Farmers are facing a much earlier growing season and several more weeks of anxiety over the threat of frost.