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PHOTOS: 300 gather to support public education in Ann Arbor

Yesterday, nearly 300 teachers and advocates gathered in Ann Arbor for a rally to support public education, sponsored by Michigan Teachers and Allies for Change (M-TAC). Attendees listened to speakers like State Representative Jeff Irwin, Ann Arbor Education Association President Linda Carter, Ann Arbor Public Schools Superintendent Jeanice Swift, and Ann Arbor Public Schools teacher Quinn Strassel. The headliner for the event was Democratic candidate for Lt. Governor Lisa Brown. Brown reminded the crowd which candidates for Governor and Lt. Governor are on the side of teachers, students, and public education, in general. (HINT: It’s not Snyder/Calley.) She told the crowd that education is the number one priority for her and Democratic gubernatorial candidate Mark Schauer.…

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REMINDER: Michigan Teachers & Allies for Change rally for public schools in Ann Arbor TODAY!

I am reposting this as a reminder that there is a rally to support public education TODAY in Ann Arbor from 5:30-6:30 at Liberty Plaza. Democratic candidate for Lt. Governor Lisa Brown will be the headliner.
Michigan Teachers and Allies for Change (M-TAC), a grassroots group of teachers and allies working on behalf of public education, is hosting a rally in support of public education this TODAY, from 5:30 to 6:30. The event will take place at Liberty Plaza in downtown Ann Arbor.

Speakers include Democratic candidate for Lt. Governor Lisa Brown, State Representative Jeff Irwin, Ann Arbor Education Association president Linda Carter, Ann Arbor Public Schools Superintendent Jeanice Swift, and Ann Arbor Public Schools teacher Quinn Strassel, among others.…

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EVENT: Michigan Teachers & Allies for Change rally for public schools in Ann Arbor this THURSDAY, 8/28/14

Michigan Teachers and Allies for Change (M-TAC), a grassroots group of teachers and allies working on behalf of public education, is hosting a rally in support of public education this Thursday, August 28th, from 5:30 to 6:30. The event will take place at Liberty Plaza in downtown Ann Arbor.

Speakers include Democratic candidate for Lt. Governor Lisa Brown, State Representative Jeff Irwin, Ann Arbor Education Association president Linda Carter, Ann Arbor Public Schools Superintendent Jeanice Swift, and Ann Arbor Public Schools teacher Quinn Strassel, among others.

The event will also include readings from the 2014 Ann Arbor Youth Poetry Slam Team and free ice cream and face painting for kids.…

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EVENT: Citizens Climate Lobby to discuss climate change and how you can get involved – Ann Arbor, 8/11/14

A newly-formed chapter of the Citizens Climate Lobby in Ann Arbor is holding an event on Monday, August 11th, 2014 at the Ecology Center titled “Climate Change: Learn How YOU Can Make A Difference!” The speaker will be Dr. Elizabeth Del Buono, MD, a Climate Reality Presenter and Citizens’ Climate Lobby Volunteer and she will discuss global warming and why it is urgent that we take action to address this problem.

From their Facebook event page:

Dr. Buono will explain the solution proposed by Citizens’ Climate Lobby and favored by economists as the most efficient way to transition away from fossil fuels: placing a price on greenhouse gas emissions, and she will teach us how we can become citizen advocates to ensure that this solution is enacted.…
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EVENT: Activists work to stop oil exploration and drilling in Washtenaw County

A new group has formed called Citizens for Oil-free Backyards (COFBY)to oppose oil and gas exploration, drilling, and extraction in Scio Township, just outside Ann Arbor, Michigan, and in other parts of Michigan. Their efforts are in response to an effort by Traverse City-based West Bay Exploration to begin exploring for oil in Scio Township. More than 300 people attended the first hearing (more on that HERE.)

Tomorrow, COFBY is holding an informational session in at the Scio Township Hall from 7:30-9:30. The speaker will be environmental consultant and former Department of Environomental Quality official Dr. Christopher Grobbel. Click the image below for a PDF flyer for the event:

The group’s efforts are gaining widespread support.…

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Univ. of Michigan law prof Steven Croley confirmed by Senate as general counsel for U.S. Energy Dept.

University of Michigan law professor Steven Croley was confirmed by the U.S. Senate as general counsel for the U.S. Energy Department this week. Croley, the husband of State Supreme Court Justice Bridget Mary McCormack, has been working for the White House as deputy assistant and deputy counsel to President Obama and spends his weeks working at the White House. He is currently on leave from his position as professor at the University of Michigan law school.

A University of Michigan law professor will become the top attorney at the U.S. Department of Energy after the U.S. Senate voted Monday to confirm his appointment.…
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Ann Arbor fundraiser for Mark Schauer/Lisa Brown – May 15th, 4:30-6:30p. Please join us!

Anne and I are pleased to be part of the host committee for an upcoming fundraiser for the gubernatorial campaign of Mark Schauer and his running mate Oakland County Clerk Lisa Brown. The fundraiser is being sponsored by our amazing friends at Citizens Against Government Overreach (CAGO) and the Michigan Education Association PAC.

The reception is from 4:30 – 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, May 15th at the Arbor Brewing Company in Ann Arbor (114 East Washington Street) and will feature music by David Roof. Mark will join us at 5:00 p.m. to discuss their campaign and his plan to lead Michigan out of the corporatist morass we find ourselves in today.…

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Ann Arbor and Ypsi: Vote YES for More & Better Buses on May 6

Better transportation choices will be better for all of us.

If you live in Ann Arbor, Ypsilanti or Ypsi Township, please join me, and a lot of other people, in voting YES on the transit millage tomorrow.... In Washtenaw County, even the opposition to the millage acknowledges the desire for better public transportation and is calling the "no" campaign "Better Transit Now." Not that they are very clear on how a "no" vote will lead to better transit, but never mind that – they agree, at least in theory, with the goal, even if they don’t want to pay for it. And it’s hard to argue with the benefits of improving public transit, even for those (like me) who rarely use the bus. Even if you don’t take the bus, making it convenient for other people to leave their cars at home means traffic is better and we have less need to build more parking. Using less gas means less pollution, which is better for our health. And it’s better for our economy, creating jobs and economic development downtown and letting low wage workers get to work. (More details about the specifics of tomorrow’s millage are here.)
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UPDATED: Scio Township residents turn out in force to oppose new oil drilling in their community


Oil well in Saline, Michigan. CC image credit: Dwight Burdette | Wikimedia Commons

A standing room-only crowd of more than 300 Scio Township residents packed a recent hearing at the Washtenaw Intermediate School District headquarters last Thursday to speak out about a proposal to drill for oil near the border with Ann Arbor. The hearing was hosted and moderated by State House Rep. Gretchen Driskell, former mayor of Saline.

West Bay Exploration out of Traverse City has already had several landowners signed contracts turning over drilling rights to the company. Attendees were nearly unanimous in their opposition to the drilling which many fear will lead to increased industrial traffic, noise, pollution, and contamination of wells and the nearby Huron River.…

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(PHOTOS) President Obama brings #minimumwage populism and campaign-style energy to Ann Arbor

President Obama came to Ann Arbor, Michigan yesterday to promote raising the national minimum wage to $10.10. His speach was full of energy and populism and had the crowd of around 1,400 on their feet and energized for the entire 35 minutes.

Chris and I were there to record it.

Before I came here today, I stopped at Zingerman’s, which is the right thing to do when you’re in Ann Arbor. I stopped for two reasons. The first is the Reuben is killer. So I ordered like the small and it didn’t look that small. So I gave half to Valerie Jarrett, who’s traveling with us.…
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