Late Edition, May 1, 2021
COVID-19 school outbreaks, vaccines, OMH retirement, and a little bit more.
As much as I wish it was, this isn’t my photo. I haven’t been camping yet, but the long days and warmer weather are getting harder to resist.
I love reporting stories out-of-doors, so don’t be surprised if I work some camping-adjacent stories into my Late Edition coverage soon. It’s why I moved here.
Local School Outbreaks: A Contextualization
Last week, I hurriedly shared some data I had received from MDHHS. This week, I talked with Superintendent George Stockero at the CCISD and Ian Repp at Michigan Tech about what a school outbreak is and how they were handled.
Having the data is important, but without the context, it isn’t necessarily helpful.
Navigating the vaccine landscape
I spoke with a vaccinologist about the importance of vaccines and people’s reactions to them.
Tumban, who formerly worked for Michigan Tech but recently took an offer with Texas Tech University, pointed to vaccines as the way out of the pandemic, but there are still unknowns about them.
Ontonagon Village struggles with legacy obligations
After selling the Ontonagon Memorial Hospital, the village is still responsible for the retirement of 28 former employees. This is a significant financial burden for the small village. The council is working on finding a solution.
Bruce Johanson reporting.
Normally, I would review the state legislative action from the last month this week, but I’m going to push it to next week.
I’m going to be getting my second dose of Moderna this week, and I’m planning room into my week to have a sleepy day or two. Saving the Legislative Update for next week allows me to plan on laying low but still writing something. I have a couple of other “easy” stories lined up, too.
I’m also hoping to use the low-intensity week to do some spring cleaning and get my moped out of storage and running (it needed work when I put it away). Not being able to get reimbursed for my mileage means I need an efficient mode of travel for the summer. I’ve named it “The Lawnmower”. I need a stencil if you know anybody.
There is one thing I want to share with you immediately, though. I think I’ll count it as “Hey, That’s Neat” for this week, too. It’s a small, but important detail to highlight.
After the three-ring circus he presided over, Sen. McBroom is confirming there was no widespread fraud in Michigan during the 2020 election.
This past week, the Houghton City Council met. I tried watching on their Facebook stream, which was a mistake. The audio is truly terrible. There’s so much fuzz and background noise it sounds like they have a waterfall inside the council chamber.
I did what I could to clean it up, and it’s much clearer, if still difficult to understand, on the Sunshine Calendar recording.
This week, Hancock’s City Council meets on Wednesday. Their stream is still a bit difficult to see much in, but the audio is improving meeting by meeting. I’m working to be able to add labels to the video so viewers can tell who is talking. Eventually, I’ll have to decide whether I should record each meeting in person or use the stream and add the labels because I’m not able to do both.
There’s no further information on the Sunshine Calendar for this week’s meeting yet, but I’ll add it as I receive it.
Aggregated News - Endorsed, not sponsored
These are articles (and the occasional podcast) I’ve found that I thought should be shared. None of the work is my own, but it comes from colleagues and organizations that I find generally trustworthy, or am personally a member of.
Click on the headline to be taken to the story.
Gov. Whitmer has tied lifting occupancy limits and curfews to COVID-19 vaccination rates which is (unsurprisingly) controversial for the GOP legislature.
Making an appointment to renew plates and use other services at the Secretary of State office is the new normal, according to SoS Jocelyn Benson.
That’s it. No story or analysis. It’s only 14 pages long (with very wide margins) and could reshape our country as we know it. You should really read it for yourself.
Garrett at the Gazette detailed a two-year road construction project that will be taking place on U.S. 41 in Houghton. It’s worth knowing what’s happening.
The GOP-supported bill would reimburse distributors through a tax credit from the Cleanup and Redevelopment Trust Fund, which funds contamination cleanups.
From NMU’s student journalists, the criminal justice department and Black Student Union are making connections to solve problems despite controversy. Great solutions-based reporting!
I was very sad to hear of the unhappy conclusion to the three-day search in Ontonagon County. If you would like to support the Besonen family, there is a fundraiser here, where you can either donate monetarily or get the address to send a card.
If you don’t understand what some criminal justice reform, like expungement laws, can mean for people, this is the perfect story for you. It tells the story of a couple of people, once broken but now building a new life together as a family.
That’s all for this week! Don’t forget to share this with other community-minded people in your life!
Just a quick note that I can still use your support to increase coverage! I’m still working a couple of shifts a week at another job. If you’d like to see me go “all-in” on Late Edition, subscribe on Patreon.
And don’t be afraid to give me a little feedback, either. I don’t bite!