Duggan's plans include speedier house demolitions
DETROIT (AP) - Mayor-elect Mike Duggan says he wants to reduce the time it takes to tear down vacant houses as part of his plan to revitalize distressed Detroit neighborhoods.
The Detroit News reports that Duggan also told about 50 people attending the ARISE Detroit! annual breakfast Saturday that between state and federal programs designed to attack blight "there is more than enough money" available to transform the city.
The former Detroit Medical Center chief was elected in November and will take over as mayor in January.
Duggan also said he will join a dozen other newly elected mayors from across the country next week at a luncheon with President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden.
ARISE Detroit! is a coalition of more than 400 groups, churches, block clubs and businesses.
Tribute to Mandela's legacy scheduled in Detroit
DETROIT (AP) - A free event has been scheduled in Detroit to honor the life and legacy of former South African President Nelson Mandela.
The tribute will be held from 3 to 5 p.m. on December 15th at the Music Hall Center for the Performing Arts.
The Reverend Wendell Anthony and Fellowship Chapel in Detroit are helping form a committee to honor Mandela who died Thursday at age 95.
Mandela was sentenced to life imprisonment in 1964 for leading a campaign of sabotage against the South African government. He was released in 1990 and later that year was celebrated with a rally at Tiger Stadium in Detroit as part of an eight-city tour through America in which he spoke out against apartheid.
In 1994, he was elected South Africa's first black president.
RESTAURANT OWNER SLAIN
Detroit area restaurant owner found slain in alley
HARPER WOODS, Mich. (AP) - A Detroit area restaurant owner has been shot to death during an apparent robbery in an alley behind his eatery.
The Detroit News and the Detroit Free Press report Saturday that Altin Avdyli's body was found late Friday night behind the Royal Grill in Harper Woods, just east of Detroit.
The 31-year-old Avdyli, of nearby Roseville, was shot in the neck. His 2010 Chevrolet Camaro was stolen. Police say the gray car has distinctive black racing stripes. The Michigan license plate number is CFZ-9555.
ATTEMPTED ROBBERY-COLLEGE STUDENT
Student assaulted during on-campus robbery attempt
ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) - Police are investigating the attempted robbery of a University of Michigan student outside an on-campus library.
The Ann Arbor News reports that the male student was approached by two men about 1:40 a.m. Saturday near the Hatcher Graduate Library. He was punched in the head and kicked twice.
One man went through the victim's pockets while he was on the ground, but nothing was taken. The attackers fled when other people approached.
The student did not require medical attention. No arrests have been made.
WORKER DIES-TILDEN MINE
Tilden Mine worker falls from train car, dies
ISHPEMING, Mich. (AP) - Authorities are investigating the death of an Upper Peninsula mine worker who fell from a train car at the Tilden Mine in Ishpeming.
The Daily Press of Escanaba and the Mining Journal of Marquette report Saturday that the man fell Friday afternoon and was pronounced dead at a hospital.
The man was working on the train car at the mine's concentrator plant.
Cleveland-based Cliffs Natural Resources which operates the Marquette County mine and the United Steelworkers Union are investigating the death.
The mine is west of Marquette and produces iron ore pellets.
JAIL OVERCROWDING-LIVINGSTON COUNTY
Livingston sheriff complains of jail overcrowding
HOWELL, Mich. (AP) - Sheriff Bob Bezotte says overcrowding has forced the Livingston County Jail to sleep some female inmates on the floor of a small cell with a single toilet.
The Livingston County Daily Press and Argus of Howell reported Saturday that Bezotte sent an email and photo showing the sleeping conditions to county commissioners.
The newspaper says it received the email and photo Friday through the Freedom of Information Act.
Bezotte is pushing for a new jail. He says there are 31 beds for women, but the jail averages more than 60 females on any given day.
County Commissioner Ronald Van Houten calls the photo "propaganda."
The Howell jail holds 254 inmates. The county is looking at expanding the facility. A recent $13.5 million plan would increase capacity to 442 inmates.
Family, friends post fliers about missing woman
FLINT, Mich. (AP) - Relatives and friends have posted fliers across Flint of a 19-year-old woman missing since early November.
The Flint Journal reports that they began canvassing neighborhoods and local businesses following a Saturday morning service for Allante Hill at a local church.
The newspaper reports that Hill was last seen around 3:30 a.m. on November 2nd at a fast food restaurant drive-thru. Police say the man she was last seen with came forward after sketches were released. He told them he did nothing wrong.
Police say it's unclear whether Hill's disappearance is the result of foul play.
Larue Hill said Saturday that he hopes "someone will come forward with some concrete information" about his daughter's whereabouts.
A 7 p.m. candlelight vigil was also planned Saturday at Flint's Family Worship Center Church.
Audit: One-stop state licensing system little used
LANSING, Mich. (AP) - Michigan's auditor general says state departments mostly aren't using a one-stop online permitting system designed to help people who want to start, operate or expand a business.
An audit released last week found that Michigan spent $20 million developing and maintaining the Michigan Business One Stop System, but it gets little use. The system was created from 2007-09 to give entities doing business with the state a single entry point and to streamline licensing.
Auditors say state agencies have no strategic plan for the continued development and use of the one-stop system.
A lead agency told other departments to integrate with the new system. But agencies said their permitting processes were complex and it was easier for businesses to use existing procedures.
Michigan DNR awards grants for park, recreation
LANSING, Mich. (AP) - The Michigan Department of Natural Resources has awarded nearly $1.5 million in grants to communities around the state to improve parks and recreation facilities.
Ten community parks will share $695,500 from the Land and Water Conservation Fund, which is supported by federal revenues from offshore gas and oil development. Three of the recipients are in Marquette County. The others are in Bay, Berrien, Benzie, Gogebic and Genesee counties.
An additional 19 communities are splitting $761,600 from a fund derived from sale of "recreation passports," which allow entry to state parks.
The grants will pay for projects such as playground development and renovations, picnic areas and pavilions, replacement of bathroom facilities and improved access for those with disabilities.
Flint possible home for 'Wilderness Golf' course
FLINT, Mich. (AP) - Flint is a potential home for a "Wilderness Golf" course.
When Detroit-area residents Frank Dattilo and Paul Lubanski were looking for a place to record a match of their new sport, they headed north.
The Flint Journal reports the first game of the more physical variation of the traditional game took place over the summer at the shuttered Mott Park Golf Course.
The round was shot for a documentary-style film aimed at introducing the sport.
The scoring system for "Wilderness Golf" is based on the amount of time taken to play, not the amount of strokes over or under par. It's also designed to be played on rougher terrain.
Lubanski says he thinks Mott Park could be the site of the first-ever permanent "Wilderness Golf" course.
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