Quantcast
Are you the publisher? Claim or contact us about this channel


Embed this content in your HTML

Search

Report adult content:

click to rate:

Account: (login)

More Channels


Showcase


Channel Catalog



Channel Description:

AnnArbor.com's News section covers government, crime, education, health and the environment across Washtenaw County.

older | 1 | .... | 179 | 180 | (Page 181) | 182 | 183 | newer

    0 0

    The Kerrytown BookFest drew authors, readers and more to the Ann Arbor Farmers Market Sunday.

    AnnArbor.com captured these photos.


    0 0

    The second phase of the Ann Arbor Planning Commission's evaluation of the downtown zoning continues with more public meetings and online surveys planned.

    a2d2_zoning_080513_RJS_004.jpg

    Members of the public participate in a review of the downtown zoning at a recent public meeting in Ann Arbor.

    Ryan J. Stanton | AnnArbor.com

    Upcoming events include public focus group meetings this week:

    • Monday, Sept. 9, noon-1 p.m., brown bag lunch in the board room at the Chamber of Commerce, 115 W. Huron St.
    • Monday, Sept. 9, 5-6 p.m., Traverwood Library Branch Multi-Purpose Room, 3333 Traverwood Drive.
    • Tuesday, Sept. 10, 5-6 p.m., Pizza House, 618 Church St.
    • Wednesday, Sept. 11, 5-6 p.m., Bill's Beer Garden, 218 S. Ashley St.
    • Thursday, Sept. 12, 8-9 a.m., Downtown Development Authority offices, 150 S. Fifth Ave.

    Other opportunities for the community to get involved in the downtown zoning evaluation project include:

    • "Community Coffees" with consultants to hear community views on Thursday, Sept. 5 and Thursday, Sept. 19 from 8:30-10:30 a.m. at Espresso Royale, 324 S. State St.
    • A public workshop on Thursday, Sept. 19, 7-9 p.m., Workantile Exchange, 118 S. Main St., to review options for changes to the downtown zoning.
    • Online surveys available at www.a2gov.org/downtownzoning

    Updates will be posted at www.a2gov.org/downtownzoning throughout the process. A link to sign up for e-mail updates can be found on the website.

    The Planning Commission's Ordinance Revisions Committee is overseeing the zoning evaluation process. ENP & Associates, a planning consulting firm based in Ann Arbor, was hired to facilitate the process with assistance from the city's planning staff.

    Ryan J. Stanton covers government and politics for AnnArbor.com. Reach him at ryanstanton@annarbor.com or 734-623-2529. You also can follow him on Twitter or subscribe to AnnArbor.com's email newsletters.


    0 0

    Ann Arbor police expect to submit their investigation into the crash that killed Sharita Williams to Washtenaw County prosecutors by the end of this week.

    sharitawilliams.jpg

    Sharita Williams

    Facebook photo

    The news comes one month after Williams died from her injuries suffered in the Aug. 7 crash. She died at University of Michigan Hospital Aug. 9 at the age of 20.

    Sgt. William Clock said crash reconstructionists are close to finishing their investigation and expect to send their report to the Washtenaw County Prosecutor’s Office.

    “Myself and the other crash reconstructionists working on it are close to finishing it up,” Clock said in an email over the weekend. “We should have it to the prosecutor’s office for review by Friday.”

    After the case is submitted, it’ll be up to prosecutors to determine if there will be charges filed against the driver.

    A green Chevrolet Cavalier struck Williams about 3 p.m. Aug. 7 on Plymouth Road between Nixon Road and Traverwood Boulevard. Williams was crossing the street from north to south in a pedestrian crosswalk and was struck in the right eastbound lane, police said.

    The Rapid Rectangular Flashing Beacon (RRFB) lights at the crosswalk were activated and flashed for about 30 seconds before the crash took place, witnesses said. Other vehicles had stopped for Williams to allow her to make it nearly out of the roadway before she was hit.

    Police interviewed the driver of the green Cavalier at the scene for an initial statement, but she declined a follow-up interview on the advice of her lawyer. She is allowed to drive while the investigation continues, and her license cannot be taken away unless charges are filed and a review is ordered.

    Police did not do a sobriety test on the driver at the scene because they did not have any reason to believe the woman was intoxicated.

    Williams was entering her junior year at the University of Michigan and was a native of Clinton Township.

    Kyle Feldscher covers cops and courts for AnnArbor.com. He can be reached at kylefeldscher@annarbor.com or you can follow him on Twitter.


    0 0

    Dawn Farm, the Ypsilanti Township-based agency that helps drug addicts and alcoholics with long-term recovery, on Sunday held its 40th Annual Jamboree.

    AnnArbor.com captured these images.


    0 0

    020613_NEWS_Aerial_Downtown_MRM_04.jpg

    University of Michigan's central campus

    Melanie Maxwell I AnnArbor.com

    The hunt for the University of Michigan's next president is sure to be very secretive, but the school is hosting a series of forums at which stakeholders can voice opinions on what qualities they want to see in their next leader.

    The Board of Regents and its seven-member search committee are already in the midst of searching for Mary Sue Coleman's replacement and will be surveying staff, faculty and students during September. Earlier this year Coleman announced she will retire July 31, 2014.

    10302012_MarySueColeman_DJB.jpg

    Mary Sue Coleman

    AnnArbor.com file photo

    Forums are scheduled for the Ann Arbor, Dearborn and Flint campuses during the weeks of Sept. 16 and Sept. 23.

    "We want to hear from students, faculty, staff, alumni, community members and others as we begin the process of finding the 14th president of this great university," regent Laurence Deitch said in a press release. Added regent Kathy White: "The forums have been scheduled at different locations, during different times of the day to allow for the broadest possible input."

    During the sessions, a search consultant from Russell Reynolds Associates will offer a brief explanation of the search process. Attendees will have the opportunity to give input on the qualities they hope to see in the next president.

    Members of the Board of Regents and members of the search committee will attend all sessions.

    The meetings will take place as follows:

    • Sept. 17, 3 to 4 p.m., Michigan Rooms C-D, University Center, UM-Flint campus. This session is primarily for the UM-Flint campus community.
    • Sept. 17, 6:30 to 7:30 p.m., Auditorium, Biomedical Science Research Building, 109 Zina Pitcher Place. This session is primarily for faculty and staff on the Ann Arbor campus, including those who work in the U-M Health System.
    • Sept. 26, Noon to 1 p.m., 100 Hutchins Hall, Law School. This session is primarily for faculty and staff on the Ann Arbor campus.
    • Sept. 26, 6:30 to 7:30 p.m., Auditorium 3 (1200), Modern Languages Building. This session is specifically designed for students on the Ann Arbor campus.
    • Sept. 27, 2 to 3 p.m., BorgWarner Auditorium, UM-Dearborn campus. This session is primarily for the UM-Dearborn campus community.
    • Sept. 27, 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., Blau Auditorium, Ross School of Business. This session is primarily for the Ann Arbor community and public at large.

    The final decision about who will be U-M's next president lies with the board. Working in secret, the search committee will present a pool of finalists to the board and will collaborate with the search firm. U-M announced in June that it will pay the firm $300,000 —and is budgeting an additional $50,000 for expenses— to facilitate the search.

    The search committee is composed of seven faculty members, some who hold administrative positions. There is no student or community member on the committee, unlike in previous presidential searches at the school.

    Kellie Woodhouse covers higher education for AnnArbor.com. Reach her at kelliewoodhouse@annarbor.com or 734-623-4602 and follow her on twitter.


    0 0

    A new roundabout at Geddes and Ridge roads in Superior Township has partially opened to traffic, officials announced Monday.

    The intersection has been closed since June as crews contracted by the Washtenaw County Road Commission converted the four-way stop into a single-lane roundabout.

    090913_GEDDES-ROUNDABOUT.jpg

    Part of the roundabout under construction in August at Geddes and Ridge roads in Superior Township. The intersection has opened to most traffic as the roundabout is complete.

    Kyle Mattson | AnnArbor.com

    The roundabout is "substantially complete" and is open to traffic in all directions except for northbound Ridge Road north of the intersection, Road Commission officials said.

    That lane remains closed to drivers as work continues.

    The majority of the $1.1 million project was paid for by South Pointe Scholars Charter Academy, which is located at the intersection at 10550 Geddes Road.

    As a condition of the construction of access driveways to the school, the charter academy agreed to pay for the roundabout's construction.

    The project was supposed to be completed by the end of August so as not to affect traffic on the first day of school, but construction delays pushed the project into the first weeks of September.

    Because the project is behind schedule, the contractor, Fonson Inc. of Brighton, will be paid $1,300 less of its contract award amount for each calendar day past the deadline that the project is not complete.

    GM & Sons, Inc. of Whitmore Lake is the subcontractor doing the concrete paving.


    View Geddes and Ridge roads in a larger map

    Amy Biolchini is the K-12 education reporter for AnnArbor.com. Reach her at (734) 623-2552, amybiolchini@annarbor.com or on Twitter.


    0 0

    Two men were arrested Monday morning after fleeing from police following a home invasion in Ypsilanti.

    Officers responded to a call at 4:30 a.m. in the 200 block of Ferris Street for a home invasion that had just occurred, according to a press release.

    The 18-year-old victim told police that two white men forced entry into his home and stole his Apple Macbook Pro laptop computer.

    After gathering descriptions of the suspects from the victim, an Ypsilanti police officer located the suspect vehicle in the area of Michigan Avenue and Johnson Street.

    A traffic stop was initiated and one of the vehicle's occupants fled on foot. The officer chased the suspect and was able to apprehend him. The suspect was in possession of the stolen laptop.

    The driver and other occupants fled the scene in the vehicle, but were apprehended shortly after by another YPD officer. Both suspects, a 32-year-old man and a 25-year-old man from Belleville, were identified by the victim, according to the press release. The victim does not know the two suspects.

    The two suspects and two women were transported to the county jail for lodging on home invasion and resisting and obstructing charges.

    The 26-year-old female driver, a resident of Taylor, was released pending charges for fleeing and eluding. The other passenger, a 31-year-old woman from Taylor, was released without charges.

    The two men will be arraigned on Tuesday, Sept. 10.


    View Larger Map

    Katrease Stafford covers Ypsilanti for AnnArbor.com.Reach her at katreasestafford@annarbor.com or 734-623-2548 and follow her on twitter.


    0 0

    Family members of Paul DeWolf, the University of Michigan medical student who was found slain in July said they don't know who might have killed him and want anyone with information about the case to come forward.

    DeWolf_Psm.jpg

    Paul DeWolf

    Courtesy photo

    Second Lt. Paul DeWolf, 25, was attending the school in Ann Arbor on an Air Force scholarship. He was found dead July 24 at his off-campus apartment of a single gunshot to the neck after failing to report for work at a hospital. Authorities have released few details of the killing.

    "He just wanted to help people and that's why it comes as a complete surprise and shock to us that this would happen to him," Thom DeWolf, his father, said in a WOOD-TV report.

    "We don't understand why," Kris DeWolf said of her son's death. "This was a child, a young man who really had no enemies."

    Asked whether the family had a message for anyone responsible for Paul DeWolf's death, his father said they should think about what kind of person he was and surrender to authorities.

    "At some point in their life, they will have to face a judge," Thom DeWolf said. "Whether it's an earthly judge or an eternal judge, and an earthly judge will be much easier than an ethereal judge will be."

    Paul DeWolf, a native of Schoolcraft in southwestern Michigan, had planned to graduate from medical school next year. The night before his body was found, his family said he was at his apartment studying for a surgery he was planning to participate in and was texting his sister, Rebekah.

    "That was my last conversation," she said. "He told me 'perfect, thanks'."

    Ann Arbor and University of Michigan Police together are offering rewards totaling $10,000 dollars in the case.


    0 0

    090613_sports_FBlincoln_BFB.JPG

    The Lincoln High School football team prepares to take the field against Huron High School on Sept. 6.

    Brianne Bowen | AnnArbor.com

    Now you’re just showing off, Lincoln.

    We posted our third AnnArbor.com Game of the Week poll on Friday, putting the Railsplitters back in the poll after a week-long hiatus.

    Three days later, the Lincoln faithful has cast more than 1,200 votes for their Friday game against Temperance Bedford to be our Game of the Week. Instead of the Railsplitters’ normal 60 percent of the total vote tally Lincoln normally garners, they’re up to 80 percent this week.

    But we’ve still got a day to vote, and a motivated fan base -- whether it be Saline, Chelsea, Milan, Pioneer or Father Gabriel Richard -- can mount a comeback effort. The poll closes at 6 p.m. Tuesday.

    Friday’s game will feature a pair of unbeaten teams -- Lincoln moved to 2-0 with a Friday win over Huron, while Bedford topped Toledo St. Francis, 56-25.


    0 0

    090913_IPAD-school.JPG

    Zeeland West High School 9th grade students Josh Noorman, 15, left, and Brett Visser, 14, access an online program on an iPad to help with their fetal pig dissection in a biology lab class. Photo taken May 31, 2012.

    Mark Copier | Mlive.com

    Each of the 839 students at Chelsea High School has been assigned an iPad 4 tablet for this school year, the Chelsea Standard reported.

    Every teacher at the school has their own iPad as well. The devices were funded by the district's 2009 bond issue that raised about $19 million, and families were given the option to purchase $30 insurance.

    Students are expected to bring the iPads to school fully charged and in like-new condition every day, the Chelsea Standard reported.

    Specific iPad-free zones have been designated in the high school. District tech staff have to approve app downloads to the students' iPads, according to the report.

    Amy Biolchini is the K-12 education reporter for AnnArbor.com. Reach her at (734) 623-2552, amybiolchini@annarbor.com or on Twitter.


    0 0

    More than 76 percent of roughly 1,600 online survey respondents believe Ann Arbor would benefit from having more downtown parks and open spaces.

    As the city moves forward with exploring the idea, a majority of those surveyed suggested they'd prefer a new park at least the size of Liberty Plaza, which is about 11,000 square feet.

    092012_News_Liberty_Plaza_C.jpg

    Liberty Plaza in downtown Ann Arbor.

    Courtney Sacco | AnnArbor.com

    Many others indicated they'd prefer a large park or open space similar in size to the Farmers Market, which is about 30,000 square feet.

    The Downtown Park Subcommittee of the city's Park Advisory Commission invited the public to take the online survey as it continues to look at the issue of downtown parks.

    The committee plans to make a recommendation to the City Council this fall about use of city-owned properties as parks or open space.

    The survey noted the city uses streets, parking lots and plazas for more than 50 annual downtown street festivals, fairs and outdoor programmed events.

    About half of those surveyed said those spaces meet or exceed the community's need for downtown parks and open spaces, while 37.6 percent said they don't; 13.3 percent were unsure.

    If the city were to add more downtown parks or open spaces, only 9 percent of respondents think it should be solely funded by city tax dollars.

    Rather, 67.8 percent said it should be funded through a combination of public and private sources, and another 5.8 percent said it should be solely private funds.

    The Library Lot parking lot above the Fifth Avenue underground parking garage was ranked as the most desirable spot for a new downtown park/open space, followed by the old YMCA site across the street, the Kline Lot at Ashley and William, and the Palio Lot at Main and William. The least desirable location on the list was the former city maintenance yard at 721 N. Main St.

    The majority — about 62 percent — of survey respondents were 45 and older, while about 34 percent were 25-44, and 3.8 percent were 18-24.

    The public is invited to attend the next public meeting of the Downtown Park Subcommittee from 7-8:30 p.m. Monday, Sept. 9, at the Ann Arbor District Library, 345 S. Fifth Ave. Another meeting is planned from 7-8:30 p.m. Sept. 18 inside the basement of city hall.

    Ryan J. Stanton covers government and politics for AnnArbor.com. Reach him at ryanstanton@annarbor.com or 734-623-2529. You also can follow him on Twitter or subscribe to AnnArbor.com's email newsletters.


    0 0

    083113_SPT_UMvsCMU_MRM75.JPG

    Melanie Maxwell | AnnArbor.com

    We're on the hunt for the Ann Arbor area's best brewery, and you've got just a few hours left to let your opinion be known.

    Jolly Pumpkin has a growing lead, with Arbor Brewing not too far behind. The battle for third is where the excitement is with Corner Brewery, Wolverine State Brewing, Original Gravity and Chelsea Alehouse seperated by only a handful of votes.

    Our poll closes today at 9 p.m. The top performers in the AnnArbor.com poll will garner a visit from MLive statewide entertainment reporter John Gonzales and Ann Arbor beer expert and historian David Bardallis as John tours the state searching for Michigan's Best Brewery.

    Our poll and up-to-the-minute results lives here.

    Jessica Webster leads the Food & Grocery section for AnnArbor.com, a part of the MLive Media Group. Reach her at JessicaWebster@annarbor.com. You also can follow her on Twitter or subscribe to AnnArbor.com's email newsletters.


    0 0

    090913_news_rain_BFB02sm.jpg

    A bicycle rider uses a poncho to shield himself from the rain Monday in Ann Arbor on Liberty Street. Tuesday's weather will be much different than Monday's, with the high eclipsing 90 degrees, but a cold front expected by the end of the week may bring thunderstorms and cooler temperatures.

    Brianne Bowen | AnnArbor.com

    The Ann Arbor area should prepare for a scorcher Tuesday, the National Weather Service warns, as temperatures are expected to rise into the 90s.

    Tuesday's forecast calls for mostly sunny skies and a high around 93 or 94 degrees. Much cooler weather will then move in by the end of the week.

    With the heat index, it will feel as if it's about 97 degrees outside during the hottest hours of the day, said meteorologist Rachel Kulik.

    "It's going to be quite hot tomorrow," she said.

    That's a far cry from the conditions the area was experiencing Monday afternoon. The thermometer stood at 62 at 1 p.m. Monday as light rain fell. The weather service was forecasting a high of about 83 degrees and said the chance for rain and thundershowers would continue, mainly before 2 p.m.

    University of Michigan weather observer Dennis Kahlbaum said the Sept. 10 record high, set in 1987, is 95 degrees. Kahlbaum said it's unlikely the record will be broken tomorrow.

    Kahlbaum said the most recent occurrence of 90 degree weather was July 19, when the high reached 94 degrees.

    Meteorologists are advising people who have to be outdoors Tuesday to stay hydrated and dress appropriately for the weather.

    "It's going to be mostly clear tomorrow so if you can, stay out of the sun," Kulik said. "If you don't have air conditioning, try to find a place that has some."

    With highs around 88 or 89 degrees, Wednesday won't be as steamy as Tuesday, Kulik said. However, storms may come through the area on Wednesday.

    "We might see a few rain showers today, but the next major rain storms are going to occur Wednesday afternoon," she said.

    The National Weather Service, there's a 30 to 40 percent chance for thunderstorms on Wednesday.

    Kulik said the heat will trigger the storms, bringing in a cold front.

    "Highs on Thursday will only be 75 degrees," she said.

    Friday, temperatures will be slightly cooler and around 61 degrees.

    Kulik said the high temperatures are part of the usual fluctuations seen this time of the year, but by the end of September, highs are usually around the mid-70s.

    "September is a transitional month, so we're transitioning from summer temperatures to fall and wintry type weather," she said. "We definitely get those fluctuations this time of year."

    Katrease Stafford covers Ypsilanti for AnnArbor.com.Reach her at katreasestafford@annarbor.com or 734-623-2548 and follow her on twitter.


    0 0

    The Dexter Village Council will discuss the development of a comprehensive Health and Safety program and a new public art proposal at its meeting Monday night.

    City staff has recommended starting the health and safety project, which would take four to five months and cost just more than $47,000, in April 2014.

    Friendly_troll_sculpture.png

    Dexter Village Council will decide whether to purchase artist Wendy Baker's "Friendly Troll" sculpture at its meeting Monday night.

    From Dexter Village Council Packet

    An outline of the plan, developed by F&V Operations, involves an initial review of the village’s existing health and safety infrastructure followed by the implementation of a new plan with a comprehensive Health and Safety Manual.

    The new plan would cover a wide range of potential health and safety issues ranging from traffic zone safety to pathogen exposure control. The manual would also establish safe work practices for the village for issues ranging from safe lifting practices to spill and discharge control.

    The plan is a discussion item and will not be voted on until a later council meeting. Village Manager Donna Dettling and Village Superintendent Dan Schlaff said in a memo to the council that development of the program should be a priority for the village.

    “Staff also suggests that a commitment to develop this program go hand in hand with a guarantee to fund ongoing annual safety training onsite and offsite for employees,” they said in the memo.

    “Development of a Comprehensive Safety Program will be a waste of time without follow through. [We] are committed to putting safety first, and plan to assign the program to one of the field employees of the village.”

    The Village Council will also consider a proposal from the Public Arts Selection Committee to purchase a “Friendly Troll Sculpture” to be placed alongside the Border to Border bike and pedestrian trail. The sculpture will cost the village $4,000.

    Eastern Michigan University student Wendy Baker will create the sculpture, selected by the committee and approved by the Arts, Culture & Heritage Committee. Baker was one of two applicants to submit plans for a sculpture when a “call for artists” was put out, and worked with the committee to come up with final plans for the sculpture.

    Baker said in her application that her sculpture will be a “whimsical and interactive piece of artwork that will enhance the charm of the Dexter boardwalk.”

    The troll will be approximately three to four feet tall and will be set on a base of boulders.

    Ben Freed covers business for AnnArbor.com. You can sign up here to receive Business Review updates every week. Get in touch with Ben at 734-623-2528 or email him at benfreed@annarbor.com. Follow him on twitter @BFreedinA2


    0 0

    An initial autopsy on the man found dead in the Huron River Friday revealed no signs of physical trauma, police said Monday.

    Thumbnail image for 090613_huron_river_body_CS-1.jpg

    There was no initial sign of trauma on the body of the man found in the Huron River Friday.

    Ann Arbor police Detective Lt. Robert Pfannes said Monday a toxicology screen is being done on the man, believed to be in his 40s. Police are not releasing the man’s name because his family has not been notified, Pfannes said.

    “There was no sign of any physical violence or trauma,” Pfannes said. “The toxicology screen will have to help with some of that.”

    Ann Arbor police and the Washtenaw County Sheriff’s Office dive team pulled the man from the river about noon Friday near the 900 block of North Main Street. A runner in the area discovered the man in the river, Pfannes said.

    It’s unknown if the man might have fallen off a bridge into the river — there is a railroad trestle over the Huron River near where the man was found Friday.

    The investigation into the incident continues.


    View Larger Map

    Kyle Feldscher covers cops and courts for AnnArbor.com. He can be reached at kylefeldscher@annarbor.com or you can follow him on Twitter.


    0 0

    Seven men and seven women were chosen Monday morning to determine the guilt or innocence of Leonard Ware, who is accused of shooting and killing a co-worker last year.

    Thumbnail image for Leonard_Ware2.jpg

    Leonard Ware

    Ware, 35, is charged with open murder, carrying a concealed weapon, being a felon in possession of a firearm and possessing a firearm during the commission of a felony. He’s accused of shooting and killing Bhagavan Allen, 29, on Oct. 3 on Grove Street in Ypsilanti.

    Ware’s trial began with jury selection Monday morning in Washtenaw County Trial Court Judge Darlene O’Brien’s courtroom. A jury of 14 people was chosen by Washtenaw County Assistant Prosecutor Paul Barnett and Ware’s attorney, Jeffrey Taylor.

    “It is your responsibility to determine what the facts of the case are,” O’Brien told the jury. “This is your job and no one else’s.”

    After giving the jury her initial instructions, O’Brien adjourned the case until 8:30 a.m. Tuesday, when opening statements are expected.

    The jury will initially be 14 people and then will be cut down to 12 when arguments in the case have concluded.

    O’Brien instructed the jury to consider both premeditated, first-degree murder and second-degree murder charges. The charge of open murder essentially encompasses both of those charges, keeping prosecutors from having to argue for one of the specific charges.

    According to testimony at a preliminary examination in November, Ware and Allen got into an argument at Marsh Plating in Ypsilanti, where they both worked. A fellow employee said Ware told Allen he wasn’t working hard enough and Allen took offense, with an intense verbal argument ensuing.

    Allen reportedly blew off a peace offering from Ware after the argument, and Taylor alleged Allen slapped Ware in the face. Ware and Allen agreed to meet after their shifts ended to settle their differences outside.

    Witnesses said the two men walked down opposite sides of Grove Street toward Michigan Avenue. Ware is accused of crossing the street and firing two shots from his handgun, causing Allen to fall to the ground. Witnesses alleged Ware then ran up to Allen and fired three more shots into him as he was on the ground.

    Ware is held in the Washtenaw County Jail without bond and faces a maximum of life in prison if he’s convicted.

    Kyle Feldscher covers cops and courts for AnnArbor.com. He can be reached at kylefeldscher@annarbor.com or you can follow him on Twitter.


    0 0

    There have been many great inventions since sliced bread, but Saline-based flatbread maker Flatout,Inc. is having some success in its attempt to one-up the original.

    Saline City Council will decide at its meeting Monday night whether to grant Flatout an industrial facilities tax abatement for an expansion and improvements to the company’s manufacturing center.

    Flatout Bread.JPG

    Flatout Bread owners Mike and Stacey Marsh plan to add new equipment at their Saline food manufacturing site.

    File photo | AnnArbor.com

    The five-year abatement would cover equipment necessary for a new silo, a sifter, an X-ray system, a forklift and other improvements to the company’s current manufacturing lines.

    The biggest investment being made by the company will be in a new manufacturing “line” that will include a hopper, oven, cooling rack, counter stacker and crossroller. The personal property investments total $1,088,982 and are scheduled to be completed by April 1, 2015.

    Flatout was founded by husband-and-wife team Mike and Stacey Marsh and started as an Ann Arbor sandwich shop in 1990. The company is now one of the region's largest food manufacturers, with sandwich wrap products sold in major grocery store chains, and approximately than 120 employees.

    With its increased production capacity, Flatout said in its IFT application that it plans to add the equivalent of 10 new full-time jobs to the site that make at least $50,000 per year. Those jobs are in addition to the “retention” of 120 jobs already located at the facility and must be added by August 1, 2017.

    Flatout is also making real property improvements to the site, upgrading the electrical equipment and improving the parking lot. Those projects are predicted to cost $470,000 and should also be completed by April 2015.

    As part of the agreement, Flatout will be required to submit annual certification to the city of Saline noting the number of full-time equivalent jobs at the facility with an indication of their annual pay range.

    The city can revoke the IFT abatement agreement if it determines that the installation of the personal property has not been completed on time or that employment goals have not been met.

    Flatout last made major upgrades to its automated processing facility in 2010. The company has ongoing IFT abatements on real and personal property from that investment that expire in 2015 that are still worth approximately $350,000.

    According to city records, Flatout Inc., formerly Pattco Inc. purchased the property at 1422 Woodland Drive. in 2003 for $1.05 million. The real property value of the site was assessed at $568,200 in 2013 giving it an estimated market value of $1.14 million.

    Saline City Council will hear public comment on the IFT abatement at its meeting Monday night before voting on whether to grant the exemption.

    Ben Freed covers business for AnnArbor.com. You can sign up here to receive Business Review updates every week. Get in touch with Ben at 734-623-2528 or email him at benfreed@annarbor.com. Follow him on twitter @BFreedinA2


    0 0

    Two men were arrested for disorderly conduct after a fight late Saturday night on East University Avenue in Ann Arbor during the Michigan-Notre Dame game.

    Ann Arbor police Detective Lt. Robert Pfannes said initial reports of a large fight involving tens of people were incorrect. A large crowd had gathered, but the fight was limited to the two individuals involved in the brawl, he said.

    Police responded at 10:52 p.m. Saturday to the 800 block of East University Avenue for the fight.

    It’s unknown if the men suffered any injuries. Pfannes said the two men arrested for disorderly conduct were the only people cited from that incident.

    The second-ever night game led to a busy weekend for Washtenaw County police in Ann Arbor. Seventy-two people were ejected from Michigan Stadium during the game, including 11 people who were arrested.


    View Larger Map

    Kyle Feldscher covers cops and courts for AnnArbor.com. He can be reached at kylefeldscher@annarbor.com or you can follow him on Twitter.


    0 0

    A regular meeting of the Ann Arbor Public Schools Board of Education Wednesday has been canceled.

    Due to a lack of agenda items, the board has eliminated the 7 p.m. meeting from its schedule, said Deb Mexicotte, board president.

    Several board members will meet 9 a.m. Wednesday for a planning committee meeting at the Balas Administration Building.

    The next meeting of the entire seven-member board is 5:30 p.m. Sept. 18 for a study session at a location to be determined.

    The Board of Education will conduct its next regular meeting 7 p.m. Sept. 25 in the fourth floor conference room of the Ann Arbor District Library at 343 S. Fifth Ave. It will also be the first regular meeting for new AAPS Superintendent Jeanice Kerr Swift.

    Amy Biolchini is the K-12 education reporter for AnnArbor.com. Reach her at (734) 623-2552, amybiolchini@annarbor.com or on Twitter.


    0 0

    Alice Walker, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Color Purple, has accepted an invitation to speak at the University of Michigan next fall.

    alice20f-6-web.jpg

    AP Photo

    She'll give the biannual Zora Neale Hurston Lecture for the department of Afroamerican and African studies at Hill Auditorium on Nov. 5, 2014.

    The invitation isn't the first Walker received from the Ann Arbor school.

    She was invited to be the keynote speaker at the Center for the Education for Women's 50th anniversary in early 2014, but CEW officials withdrew that invitation.

    "We are pleased to confirm that Alice Walker has accepted our invitation to speak on the U-M campus," CEW director Gloria Thomas wrote in an email. "She is retuning [sic] at the invitation of the department of Afroamerican and African studies and the Center for the Education of Women."

    On her blog, Walker said giving the lecture would be a "a lovely turn of events."

    "I accept your invitation to visit with you in the coming year: I believe we have all learned something from our efforts to reach out to one another, and I believe also that - if solar flares or deeply unintelligent wars haven’t carried us off - it will be a good time," Walker wrote in a letter to the university that she posted on her blog.

    In a memo posted on the CEW's website in August, Thomas said Walker wasn't the right fit for the celebratory nature of the anniversary event, although Walker posted on her blog that her agent was told Walker was uninvited due to a donor's objection of her outspoken criticism of Israel.

    The incident gained national attention and sparked concern about academic freedom on U-M's campus.

    A faculty governance committee drafted a resolution that voiced concern "about the potential damage done to the reputation" of the university by the disinvitation. U-M Provost Martha Pollack sent a notice to faculty affirming U-M's commitment to academic freedom and denying a donor urged the disinvitation. In the note on the center's website, Thomas apologized for the way the center handled the incident.

    Kellie Woodhouse covers higher education for AnnArbor.com. Reach her at kelliewoodhouse@annarbor.com or 734-623-4602 and follow her on twitter.


older | 1 | .... | 179 | 180 | (Page 181) | 182 | 183 | newer