Daily Briefs

Group launches ballot drive to boost use of renewable energy

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A group is launching a ballot drive to boost the use of renewable sources of energy in Michigan.

The initiative announced Monday would raise the renewable energy standard to 30 percent by 2030. Michigan now requires electric providers to produce 15 percent of their power from wind or other renewable sources by the end of 2021.

Clean Energy, Healthy Michigan needs nearly 253,000 valid signatures. If the Republican-controlled Legislature did not pass the bill, it would go to a statewide vote in November.

Billionaire environmentalist Tom Steyer’s NextGen America group is backing the measure.

The Board of State Canvassers will consider the petition’s form Tuesday.

Michigan voters in 2012 rejected a ballot initiative that would have ordered utilities to produce 25 percent of their electricity from renewable sources by 2025.


Man charged in deputy’s death found competent for trial

CLARKSTON, Mich. (AP) — A man charged with murder after authorities say he ran over a sheriff’s deputy in southeastern Michigan has been found competent for trial.

A judge on Monday made the ruling in the case of 22-year-old Christopher Berak of Macomb County, who is charged with first-degree homicide and murder of a peace officer. He returns to court next month.
Berak’s lawyer had requested the evaluation.

Authorities say 50-year-old Oakland County Deputy Eric Overall was outside his squad car early Nov. 23 preparing to deploy “stop sticks” designed to deflate vehicles’ tires at a Brandon Township
intersection when he was hit by Berak’s vehicle. It rolled over and Berak was arrested.

Earlier, Berak told officers at the Lapeer County jail he was “God” and came to break out one of his “sons.”


Symposium on Congressional Oversight March 23

The Wayne Law Review, with support from the Levin Center at Wayne Law, will present a symposium, “Congressional Oversight in the 21st Century,” at Wayne State University Law School, Spencer M. Partrich Auditorium, 471 W. Palmer in Detroit. This special event will be held from 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Friday, March 23. Building upon the “Scholars Roundtable on Congressional Oversight” sponsored by the Levin Center in June 2017, the symposium is intended to encourage increased academic research into the legal, political and historical aspects of congressional oversight investigations, their techniques and effectiveness, and their role in the constitutional system of checks and balances. Providing the keynote address will be Steve Castor, deputy general counsel, U.S. House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform under Chairman Trey Gowdy. Breakfast and lunch provided. Open remarks begin at 9:15 a.m. Panel discussions begin at 9:30 a.m. A networking reception follows the symposium at 3:45 p.m. Register by Friday, March 16 at https://law.wayne.edu/. For more information about this event, please contact T.J. Lurie at or thomas.lurie@wayne.edu.


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