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USDA asks for comment, announces possible changes to SNAP

Policy groups in Michigan say they are alarmed by language used by the United States Department of Agriculture on Thursday in its call for public comment.

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NPR News Headlines

Envy: it's an unflattering, miserable emotion. And it's universal. All of us, at some time or another, will experience that feeling of wanting what someone else has, and resenting them for having it.

Of course, like all human emotions, envy has a purpose. It's a tool for social comparison, one that can alert us to imbalances in the social hierarchy. Sometimes, these feelings of envy can prompt us to improve our lives, says Harvard social psychologist Mina Cikara.

"If you have more than what I have, I may be inspired by what you have," she says.

The Trump Organization sent the U.S. Treasury an undisclosed sum last week, in the first of what it says are annual payments to compensate for hotel profits from foreign officials.

"This voluntary contribution fulfills our pledge to donate profits from foreign government patronage at our hotels and similar businesses during President Trump's term in office," George Sorial, the company's chief compliance counsel, said in a written statement on Monday.

A Treasury spokeswoman confirmed the payment was received.

Mississippi state Sen. Chris McDaniel is expected to mount a conservative primary challenge to Republican Sen. Roger Wicker, setting in motion an intraparty battle from a Tea Party challenger who nearly knocked off an incumbent four years ago.

In a Facebook Live video Monday night, McDaniel didn't officially announce his candidacy. But he did invite supporters to a rally he's holding on Wednesday afternoon in his hometown, admitting that, "I think you can probably read between the lines as to why I would be holding an event."

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  Farmers’ market season has started, and one community market is using technology to bring fresh produce to more people.

The Midland Chamber of Commerce has launched a new service that allows people to place an order from the farmers market online and have the goods delivered to their home.

Rachel Gray is the owner of Run-A-Round Errand Service. She said the service was launched to help bring fresh produce to more people.

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A case against the state of Michigan will determine whether tax dollars can be used to support private schools.

At stake is a two-and-a-half million dollar allocation in the state budget.

Flickr User Kevin Simmons / https://flic.kr/p/RVnLXM

There was a big rally at the state Capitol Wednesday to support improved mental health services and to oppose Governor Rick Snyder’s plan to overhaul how those services are paid for.

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A bill that would increase pay for jury members in Michigan is on its way to the Senate floor.

State officials said people often lose money on jury duty, through loss of wages and the cost of food and parking.

Michael Gil / https://flic.kr/p/8ySreQ

A civil rights groups filed suit filed against the Michigan Secretary of State last week.

The suit argues it is unconstitutional to suspend the licenses of drivers who can’t afford to pay their fines.

Phil Telfeyan is the Executive Director of  Washington DC based, Equal Justice Under Law, which filed the suit.

He said the state routinely adds on late fees and fines and eventually suspends the license of someone who can’t pay.

This week on 'The Beat,' we're featuring some great new music from Diana Krall, Pete Siers, and Sarah Partidge. We're also hearing a new three-disc set from David Friessen, and hear from the Great Chick Corea.

Michigan House Democrats

There were tears and hugs on the floor of the state House today as colleagues got word that state Representative John Kivela (D-Marquette) took his life – one day after his second arrest on a charge of drunk driving.

Flickr User 401(K) 2012 http://bit.ly/2qSS35q

Big business investors are waiting on Governor Rick Snyder to give them a break. A tax break that is – to build on blighted land.

Flickr User: Hazma Butt / https://flic.kr/p/U5LfXh

 


 

Two million Medicare users in Michigan could be affected by cuts perhaps sooner than expected.

A little known Independent Payment Advisory Board - or IPAB - was created under the federal Affordable Care Act. It’s formed when Medicare spending hits a level, which is determined by a complicated formula. The group is charged with bringing costs  back down.

 

Nonviolent Peaceforce

Next week, the executive director of an organization dedicated to creating peace will be speaking in Midland.

Tiffany Easthom has been extensively involved in efforts to create peace in places like South Sudan and Syria. She’ll be speaking to members of Midland’s chapter of the Nonviolent Peaceforce on Monday, May 15.

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