Category: Community Written by Michigan Chronicle Staff
Michigan residents have until Monday, Oct. 7, to register in order to vote in the Nov. 5 election, said Secretary of State Ruth Johnson.
“I would encourage all qualified residents to register to vote,” said Johnson, Michigan’s chief election officer. “Registration takes only a few minutes and will enable voters to be a part of democracy and have their say on Election Day.”
Elections are being held in 75 of Michigan’s 83 counties on Nov. 5. The polls will be open on Election Day from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. To find out if there is an election in your community, confirm if you are registered or to see a sample ballot, visitwww.michigan.gov/vote.
To register to vote, applicants must be at least 18 years old by Election Day and be U.S. citizens. Those individuals must also be residents of Michigan and of the city or township in which they wish to register to vote.
Voters may register by mail or in person at their county, city or township clerk’s office or by visiting any Secretary of State office. When registering in person, voters must present identification or sign an affidavit stating they do not have identification with them. The mail-in form is available atwww.michigan.gov/elections. First-time voters who register by mail must vote in person in their first election, unless they hand-deliver the application to their local clerk or are at least 60 years old, disabled or are eligible to vote under the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act.
The Michigan Voter Information Center at www.michigan.gov/vote is a great online resource for Michigan voters. On the website, residents can find information on absentee voting, Michigan’s voter identification requirement, information on how to use voting equipment and contact information for their local clerk. In addition, they will find a map to their local polling place and a sample ballot. A smartphone version of the website is also available.
Voters who qualify may choose to cast an absentee ballot. As a registered voter, you may obtain an absentee ballot if you are:
- age 60 or older.
- physically unable to attend the polls without the assistance of another.
- expecting to be absent from the community in which you are registered for the entire time the polls will be open on Election Day.
- in jail awaiting arraignment or trial.
- unable to attend the polls due to religious reasons.
- appointed to work as an election inspector in a precinct outside of your precinct of residence.
Those who wish to receive their absentee ballot by mail must submit their application by 2 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 2. Absentee ballots can be obtained in person anytime through 4 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 4. Voters who request an absentee ballot in person on Monday, Nov. 4, must fill out the ballot in the clerk’s office. Emergency absentee ballots are available under certain conditions through 4 p.m. on Election Day.
Additional election information can be found at www.michigan.gov/elections.
Last Updated on Thursday, 03 October 2013 09:25
Category: Community Written by Curbed Detroit
Say goodbye to the Michigan State Fairgrounds. The vacant 157-acre site is now firmly in the clutches of Magic Plus LLC, the group fronted by Magic Johnson. Many are not happy. The group's plan—an uninspired tangle of parking lots, big box retail, and low-rise housing—has given many the impression that the project is a waste of all that acreage, especially considering that the property is being transferred for free (though "possible" payments in the future are mentioned.) It even inspired a whimsical, agriculture-based alternative plan with far more exciting renderings.
Last Updated on Thursday, 03 October 2013 09:06
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Blue Care Network among lowest priced health plans on Michigan’s ACA health insurance marketplace
Category: Community Written by AJ Williams, Chronicle Web Editor
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan is the only health insurer to offer coverage to people in all of Michigan’s 83 counties on the federally-run health insurance marketplace that opened today at 8 a.m.
Blue Cross and its affiliated HMO, Blue Care Network of Michigan, offer some of the lowest-priced plans across Michigan’s 16 rating regions. In the majority of counties in Michigan, BCBSM or BCN bronze and silver plan options offer some of the most affordable premiums on the Health Insurance Marketplace. Products, pricing and plan design are available on www.healthcare.gov and on the BCBSM website at www.bcbsm.com/myblue.
“Blue Cross and Blue Care Network have worked very hard to put affordable health insurance options in front of Michigan consumers as uninsured people and small employers begin open enrollment today,” said Terry Burke, BCBSM vice president for individual business. “As people examine their choices, Blue Cross will be offering guidance – both online and on the phone – to help people make a health plan choice that is right for them.”
The Blues offer a total of 18 options for coverage. These products are available on the federally-run Health Insurance Marketplace created by the Affordable Care Act, opening today, through independent Blue-certified insurance agents and directly through BCBSM and BCN.
“The Affordable Care Act has significantly changed what health insurance covers, how it’s sold and what it costs. With the marketplace now open, consumers will be able to choose from 18 competitively priced Blues products, with options available to Michigan residents in every county,” Burke said. “We are proud to offer some of the lowest-priced plans in Michigan. These affordable options give more people the opportunity to choose Blue Cross plans.”
Both Blue Cross and Blue Care Network will offer plans at the Gold, Silver, Bronze and Catastrophic levels. Under ACA guidelines, Bronze plans will cover 60 percent of health care expenses, Silver plans cover 70 percent, and Gold cover 80 percent. Catastrophic plans, available to individuals under the age of 30 or those qualifying for a hardship, have a higher deductible and are not associated with metal level actuarial values.
The following represent pricing averages for BCBSM and BCN individual plans offered on the Health Insurance Marketplace. The prices shown are without the subsidy that some individuals may qualify for. Subsidies can be estimated by using BCBSM’s subsidy calculator.
Burke said consumers should expect to spend more time on the phone with their insurance advisor/agent to answer questions and determine the right fit for an individual or family, within the parameters of their lifestyle and budget and work through the new application processes
Consumers can visit HealthCareReformBasics.com to learn more about the way the ACA may affect them, and learn more about their potential cost, impact and eligibility for financial subsidies to help them buy coverage. People not covered by their employer and shopping for individual health insurance can also visit bcbsm.com/myblue, talk with a Blues Health Plan Advisor (HPA) by calling (855)-890-2410 or contact their licensed Blue Cross agent to answer any questions about BCBSM and BCN products available on the Health Insurance Marketplace.
“Health care reform affects everyone,” Burke said. “The law requires people to have health insurance coverage – either through their employer or on their own – on January 1 or face a tax penalty. In seeking that coverage, people will have more robust options because health plans are required to cover more services, increasing the value and the cost of those plans. In addition, financial support is available to make coverage more affordable under the law, and people will have greater access due to the elimination of preexisting condition exclusions. This is a whale of a change for many people, but Blue Cross is here to help people sort through it and find the right plan for them.”
The ACA offers more access to richer health benefits for more people. Essential Health Benefits (EHBs) are required of all carriers, more preventive services will be covered in every carrier’s offering, and carriers cannot turn individuals away based on health status.
For nearly 75 years BCBSM has offered high quality products to all Michigan residents, regardless of their health status. BCBSM’s offerings in all 83 counties throughout Michigan provide affordable choices for all residents, both on and off the Marketplace.
“Blue Cross will continue its work as a trusted advisor to people who have questions,” said Burke. “We will help those without coverage understand the subsidies they may qualify for, how to apply them on the Health Insurance Marketplace, and how they may be, in certain cases, eligible for Medicaid under expanded federal income criteria.”
For general information on health reform, visit HealthCareReformBasics.com.
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan has entered into an agreement with CMS to provide health insurance coverage through Qualified Health Plans on the Health Insurance Marketplace.
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan is a nonprofit corporation and independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. For more information, visit www.bcbsm.com/healthreform.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 02 October 2013 01:44
Category: Community Written by Michigan Chronicle Staff
DETROIT, Michigan – The union that represents Detroit’s nearly 900 firefighters stood in support of Mike Duggan for Mayor Wednesday, calling him the one candidate who can fix the city’s broken fire department and restore reliable service to residents.
Standing in front of the decommissioned Ladder 19 station on Shoemaker near French Road – a decaying symbol of the department’s failed leadership - Detroit Firefighters Local 344 President Dan McNamara said he was impressed by Duggan’s commitment to improving conditions for his members. “Mike insisted on meeting with our fire fighters here at Ladder 19 to get an understanding of what is wrong with how the fire department is being run,” McNamara said.
“This building is a perfect example of the kind of management problems we need Mike Duggan to help us fix as our next Mayor so we can provide residents the level of service and protection they deserve.” The story of Ladder 19 is a troubling one. Despite its having been recently renovated, DFD brass decided to institute so-called “brown outs” – days or weeks during which the building would be inactive and unoccupied. As a result of its sitting vacant so often, Ladder 19 became a target for vandals and scrappers.
Eventually, the damage became so great that the station – previously the envy of the department – was beyond use and abandoned. The DFD also is facing a crisis-level shortage of fire trucks, ladders and personnel, McNamara said. These challenges put entire neighborhoods at risk, he added, because fire fighters often must travel from one end of the city to another to respond to a fire.
Although greatly impressed by his turnaround history, it was Duggan’s care for Local 344’s members that won him the union’s support.“At a time when Detroit’s future is literally being shaped amidst financial turmoil, Mike’s commitment to the security and safety of the public and our members was critical to him winning our endorsement,” said Local 344’s Secretary and Ex-Officio of the Political Action Committee, Teresa Sanderfer.
Duggan’s record over the years of meeting with Fire Fighters face to face in firehouses lent considerable credibility to his pledge of giving Detroit Fire Department members a role in shaping the department going forward, Sanderfer said. “Mike’s strong support for public employees and workers’ rights makes his election especially important at a time when the City’s premature bankruptcy filing has put the hard-earned benefits of our members and retirees at risk,” Sanderfer said.
Duggan said he was honored to have the support of both the city’s EMS workers and now its fire fighters. “Our fire fighters and EMS technicians are working in conditions that no first responder should have to,” Duggan said. “We need to provide them with proper equipment that is better maintained. We also need to address once and for all the problem of the vacant buildings that make up the majority of their fire runs and pose significant threats to their safety. These are the priorities I will begin to address five weeks from now.”
Last Updated on Thursday, 03 October 2013 08:55
Chrysler Group LLC Reports September 2013 U.S. Sales Increased Slightly; Best September Sales Since 2007
Category: Community Written by Michigan Chronicle Staff
Chrysler Group LLC today reported U.S. sales of 143,017 units, a 1 percent increase compared with sales in September 2012 (142,041 units), and the group’s best September sales since 2007.
The Chrysler, Dodge and Ram Truck brands each posted year-over-year sales gains in September compared with the same month a year ago. The Ram Truck brand’s 8 percent increase was the largest sales gain of any Chrysler Group brand during the month. Chrysler ! Group extended its streak of year-over-year sales gains to 42-consecutive months in September.
Full release and sales chart: http://media..chrysler.com/newsrelease.do?id=14893&mid=2
Last Updated on Wednesday, 02 October 2013 01:38
- The Rhonda Walker Foundation (RWF) is excited to announce the 9th Annual Moving With Success Empowerment Brunch
- $50,000 donation establishes scholarship endowment at Wayne Law in honor of Congressman Conyers
- Government shutdown: 800,000 workers go without pay, and it doesn't stop there
- DPS "Eat To Win On Count Day" Contest
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