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Michigan budget cuts impact East Lansing

Posted by Steve Davy on June 26, 2009

by Steven Davy and Mike Presley

Big decisions

City HallLansing gets a lot of attention when it comes to the budget. Rightfully so, as the capital of Michigan the decisions made in Lansing are felt across the state including just three and a half miles down the road in East Lansing.

                                                                 Budget cuts announced

Police MotorcycleWednesday officials from the Michigan Municipal League called on state lawmakers to halt a proposed $162 million in cuts from state revenue sharing for the 2009-10 budget year. If approved, the cuts would reduce revenue sharing by approximately $733,000 for East Lansing and $2.2 million for Lansing.



              Translating the cuts

FiretruckFor East Lansing budget cuts could mean fewer fire and police officers on the streets. The cuts could also impact funding for parks, libraries and social programs.



In the video below, East Lansing City Manager Theodore Staton discusses what the cuts to the budget might mean for the city.

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Michigan State News Extra 

See more our conversation with City Manager Theodore Staton.


The recession hasn’t been as hard on East Lansing, but it still hurts.
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Tight budgets have a direct impact on emergency services.
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What gets cut? The choices are difficult.
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Summer Camp at Michigan State has fun with German language

Posted by Steve Davy on June 22, 2009

Senta GoertlerMichigan State University Assistant Professor of Second Language Studies and German Senta Goertler teaches an Immersion German Summer Camp for High School Students.

ChalkboardThe camp offered students the chance to find out about recent trends in German pop culture, listen to German music and watch German movies, meet other German high school students from all over Michigan, discover MSU and its campus, experience the German Program at MSU first hand.

Monday the students participated in several games including a German oriented scavenger hunt. See a map of where the scavenger hunt took the students after the jump.

The camp takes place from Monday, June 22 – Thursday, June 25.

A map of the scavenger hunt below.


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East Lansing Summer Concert Series opens with Wanda Degen Trio

Posted by Steve Davy on June 17, 2009

Wanda Degen Trio

While summer doesn’t officially begin until the soltice on June 21, East Lansing got a taste of things to come with the opening of the Summer Concert Series.

The free music series, which takes place Friday and Saturday evenings, open its 2009 summer season with local favorite Wanda Degen and her trio.

Wanda DegenDegen, an award-winning singer, autoharp and dulcimer player, has been a mainstay of Lansing’s music scene since her time as a student at Michigan State University in the 1970s. Degen is joined on flute and saxophone by Dan Giacobassi and also by Pete Wittig on guitar and harmonica.

Degen 2Degen plays a variety of styles including country and folk, but for the Summer Concert Series opener the audience was not only treated beautiful weather but also to the Celtic sounds of Ireland.


The East Lansing Summer Concert Series is at the Fountain Square on Fridays and at the Ann Street Plaza on Saturdays until August 22.


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Perennial Wheat research shows promise for sustainable farming

Posted by Steve Davy on June 11, 2009

Dr. Sieglinde SnappMichigan State University researcher Dr. Sieglinde Snapp is hoping her work on Perennial Wheat at the W.K. Kellogg Biological Station might offer farmers a new sustainable way to harvest wheat.

Snapp isn’t the only one. The Associate Professor of Crop & Soil Sciences was just informed her Perennial Wheat research is going to be funded with approximately a $1 million over the next four years by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Perennial Wheat close upPerennial wheat is different than annual wheat harvested by the majority of farmers. It’s actually a cross between annual wheat and several perennial relatives.

Perennial wheat plants differ in one significant from annual wheat in that they live for several years. Annual wheat is planted and harvested every year which can lead to soil erosion and other damage to the land caused by fertilizers and weeding required for cultivation.

Another reason Perennial wheat is an intriguing field of research is that it contains more protein and micro-nutrients than annual wheat.

WilkePerhaps the real question is, how does Perennial wheat taste? Brook Wilke, one of Snapp’s graduate student research assistants,  decided to bake some cookies using Perennial wheat to find out. According to Snapp and Wilke, it’s basically the same. Others in the research lab thought it was a little nuttier.

In the video below, Snapp and Wilke explain the research and discuss the potential of Perennial Wheat.


For additional information on Snapp’s Perennial Wheat research click here.


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