Author

Laina G. Stebbins

Laina G. Stebbins

Laina G. Stebbins covers the environment, Native issues and criminal justice for the Advance. A lifelong Michigander, she is a graduate of Michigan State University’s School of Journalism, where she served as Founding Editor of The Tab Michigan State and as a reporter for the Capital News Service. When Laina is not writing or spending time with her cats, she loves art and design, listening to music, playing piano, enjoying good food and being out in nature (especially Up North).

Flint native named Michigan’s clean water chief, says she’ll ‘lift up voices in our community’

By: - October 22, 2019

The Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy (EGLE) has named Ninah Sasy as its first clean water public advocate, the department announced Tuesday morning. “I feel like I’m really going to ensure that we lift up the voices of our community, and that we’re really clear on what we’re doing to improve clean […]

Bills aimed at stopping unexpected medical bills get pushback from doctor groups 

By: - October 17, 2019

A state House committee Thursday morning heard testimony from two state representatives with a bipartisan plan to protect Michigan patients from what they call “surprise medical billing.” Various state physicians’ associations, however, were not pleased and spoke out vigorously against the bill package. House Bills 4459 and 4460, introduced by state Reps. Roger Hauck (R-Mt. […]

‘Raise the Age’ juvenile justice reform headed for governor’s desk

By: - October 16, 2019

Long-awaited “Raise the Age” juvenile justice reform bills were fast-tracked through the Senate Wednesday morning, following bipartisan compromises. The final package would raise the age limit for an offender to be tried as a juvenile from 17 to 18 years old, is expected to be on Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s desk as soon as Thursday. “We […]

House committee still tweaking bipartisan ‘safe drinking water’ bills 

By: - October 15, 2019

The state House Natural Resources and Outdoor Recreation Committee took up bills on statewide drinking water quality issues Tuesday afternoon, but declined to move forward on them until certain issues raised at the hearing are addressed. The 10-bill “safe drinking water” package, sponsored by an even split of House Democrats and Republicans, proposes updates to […]

Senate panel passes bipartisan compromise on ‘Raise the Age’ legislation

By: - October 10, 2019

Michigan’s “Raise the Age” campaign scored big Thursday morning, as a Senate committee unanimously passed bipartisan legislation that will raise the age limit for an offender to be tried as a juvenile to 18 years old. Michigan is one of just five outlier states — along with Missouri, Georgia, Texas and Wisconsin — which regards […]

Stabenow talks climate crisis impacts on Great Lakes after releasing new report

By: - October 8, 2019

Erratic and extreme lake level fluctuations will be the “new normal” for the Great Lakes, as climate change causes more frequent and more intense storms. This is according to a new report from U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-Lansing), who hosted a climate change roundtable with local health and environmental stakeholders Tuesday morning in Lansing. Stabenow […]

House Dems announce bills to lower health care, prescription costs

By: - October 7, 2019

At a press conference Monday morning held at the Care Free Medical clinic in Lansing, a group of House Democrats unveiled a new Health Over Profits for Everyone (HOPE) bill package to address the costs of prescription drugs and doctor visits. Democrats say their 10-part package will reduce the costs of health care and hold […]

Whitmer denounces Trump plan to clamp down on refugees

By: - October 4, 2019

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s office released a statement Friday condemning the President Trump administration’s recent plan to cut the number of asylum-seeking refugees allowed to resettle in the United States almost in half.  In the statement, Whitmer outlines her strong opposition to the decision and says that Michigan will remain a welcoming state to refugees. “Refugees […]

Michigan House passes bills regulating PFAS in firefighting foam

By: - October 3, 2019

The Michigan House passed three bills Thursday that would tighten regulations on certain hazardous chemicals found in firefighter foam. Class B firefighting foam is used by firefighters to extinguish fires in which materials like gasoline, oil or jet fuel are burning. In many class B foams, the active ingredient that combines with foaming agents to […]

After budget drama, Whitmer outlines areas for compromise before meeting with GOP leaders

By: - October 2, 2019

After signing the Fiscal Year 2020 budget, albeit with plenty of vetoes, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Wednesday laid out a list of key priorities she hopes to address with supplemental funding, saying she is “ready to negotiate” with legislative leaders when she convenes a quadrant meeting Thursday. On Monday, she issued 147 line-item vetoes, which […]

Peters talks 2020, Trump impeachment before visiting UAW strikers

By: - October 1, 2019

U.S. Sen. Gary Peters (D-Bloomfield Twp.) made appearances in Lansing Tuesday morning, which included a question and answer session with the Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce at a local brewery before a visit with striking General Motors workers on the picket line. The Advance spoke with Peters after fielding questions on a variety of issues […]

Protesters plan to shut down Baldwin immigration prison before it can open*

By: - September 30, 2019

Updated and corrected, 4:01 p.m. 10/2/19 The North Lake Correctional Facility is set to become Michigan’s first and only private, for-profit immigrant prison when it opens Tuesday morning. Immigration activists around the state are keen on not letting that happen.* Formerly known as the Michigan Youth Correctional Facility, the GEO Group-owned prison had previously been […]