Pentagon official: Michigan pollution study needs more time

OSCODA, Mich. (AP) — A Pentagon official has told northern Michigan residents four more years of study are necessary to get a handle on toxic chemicals from a former U.S. Air Force base that are polluting drinking water.

Michigan Radio and report Air Force Assistant Secretary John Henderson spoke Wednesday in Oscoda. Henderson says officials want to move faster on cleanup but must “get it right the first time.”

The meeting provided updates about dealing with the per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, known as PFAS .

The toxins are used in various stain- and stick-resistant household products. They’re also a component of firefighting foam used at the former Wurtsmith Air Force Base in Oscoda and other military installations.

State officials and residents are pushing the Air Force to accelerate testing and treatment of polluted groundwater.

Michigan DNR investigate how dead bobcat ended up in a tree

FAIRPLAIN TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) — Michigan wildlife officials are investigating how a dead bobcat ended up in a tree in Montcalm County.

The animal’s carcass was found Tuesday in the Flat River State Game Area. Officials with Michigan Department of Natural Resources plan to seek a necropsy to find out how the bobcat died.

John Niewoonder is a wildlife biologist for the DNR. He tells the Detroit Free Press that hunting and trapping of bobcats is allowed in the Upper Peninsula and in parts of the Lower Peninsula but not as far south as where the cat was found in a small tree.

He says the bobcat was a healthy looking male weighing 25 to 30 pounds. Niewoonder says that most likely it was hit by a car and then placed in the tree.

Senate K-12 budget hikes base funding, rejects new formula

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A proposed K-12 budget advancing in the Michigan Senate includes a larger increase in base funding than proposed by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer but rejects her call for a new formula to account for higher costs to teach at-risk, special education, and career and technical students.

A Republican-led panel approved the bill on a party-line vote Thursday. It would boost overall K-12 spending to $15.2 billion, or 2.7%. It’s about $131 million less than what the Democratic governor proposes.

The Senate plan would increase the minimum per-student allowance by $270. Better-funded districts would get $135 more per student. Whitmer proposes an increase ranging between $120 and $180 per pupil.

The Senate plan has lower funding increases than Whitmer does for districts’ disadvantaged, special education and vocational students.

14 Michigan communities get state funds for stream cleanups

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Fourteen communities around Michigan are getting state grants to host river, stream and creek cleanup activities.

The Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy timed the awards totaling more than $29,000 to coincide with Earth Day.

Local governments often work with nonprofit organizations or other volunteers for the cleanups, which include removal of trash and other debris from streams and stream banks.

The grant program began in 1998 and is funded with money from the sale of the state’s water quality protection license plates.

Grants are administered by the Great Lakes Commission. A list of this year’s recipients is available online .

— From the Associated Press

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