to be addressed
LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A $52.8 million supplemental budget bill that includes money to respond to an emerging chemical contaminant found across Michigan has been approved.
The law enacted Wednesday allocates $23.2 million to address groundwater contamination from per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS, at 28 sites in 14 communities. It’s recently drawn scrutiny north of Grand Rapids, where footwear company Wolverine World Wild dumped waste sludge decades ago.
The money will be used to hire people to analyze well water samples, buy lab equipment, help with response efforts and support local health departments. The law says federal reimbursement should be sought for costs incurred to address PFAS at multiple military sites around Michigan.
The measure also allows a planned new state veterans home in Detroit to be located outside the city.
Snyder OKs water-monitoring funds
LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Gov. Rick Snyder has approved spending $375,000 to restore a drinking water monitoring system for the Huron-to-Erie Corridor, which serves 3 million people in southeastern Michigan.
The supplemental appropriation will fund a real-time data stream that will alert plant operators of accidental spills, emergency diversions and harmful algae blooms.
The Huron-to-Erie monitoring network is made up of 14 water intake facilities along an 80-mile stretch that includes the St. Clair River, Lake St. Clair and the Detroit River. Officials say its aging equipment needs upgrades and replacements.
The Southeast Michigan Council of Governments will administer the funding, distribute equipment and provide training for plant operators.
Great Lakes fish dealer sentenced
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) — A Michigan fish dealer has been sentenced to four months in prison for buying and selling lake trout from Lake Michigan that had been illegally taken by a tribal fisherman.
George Eugene Schrink pleaded guilty to the false labeling of fish, the Grand Rapids Press reported. He operates Walters Gold Coast Fisheries.
Schrink was caught in a three-year investigation conducted by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The agency set up a covert business to buy and sell fish.
Schrink bought more than 4,600 pounds of illegally harvested fish during a three-month period in 2014, investigators said. He listed a licensed gill-net fisherman as the seller, instead of listing the tribal fisherman who was using trap nets, the government said.
The state began paying tribal fisherman up to $200,000 in 2000 to use trap nets to help rebuild the lake trout population. The nets allow for undersized fish to be released, unlike gill nets, which kill fish. Fishermen who accepted the offer weren’t allowed to keep lake trout.
Schrink was ordered to pay more than $270,000 in restitution, which will cover the cost of raising more lake trout.
Over-harvesting and sea lampreys have caused the lake trout population to dip to a dangerously low level, government officials said. Lake Michigan’s trout population is mostly maintained by stocking.
Information from: The Grand Rapids Press:MLive.com, http://www.mlive.com
Copyright 2017 The Associated Press.