Newspaper cuts, GOP guts minimum wage, Carmack dismisses suit: Your Wednesday briefing

These are Wednesday’s top stories:

GOP-led state House weakens minimum wage hike, paid sick leave

State Capitol of Michigan in Lansing.

The Republican-led Michigan House drastically weakened two initiatives to raise minimum wage and paid sick leave after depriving voters of the right to vote on the issues.

The House, in a lame duck session, delayed a minimum wage hike to at least 2030 and scaled back paid leave requirements on Tuesday.

It’s unclear whether Gov. Snyder plans to sign the bills, one of which would prevent a planned increase of the state’s $9.25 minimum wage to $12 an hour in 2022.

In another bill, employers with fewer that 50 workers would be exempt from providing paid sick time. The bill also gutted the amount of annual mandatory leave at larger businesses from 72 hours to 36 hours. 

Detroit’s daily newspapers face another round of staff cuts

Former Detroit Free Press building. Photo by Steve Neavling.

Detroit’s two struggling newspapers are bracing for another round of staff cuts.

The Detroit News and Detroit Free Press offered voluntary buyouts to staffers 55 and older. If an insufficient number of employees take the buyouts, the newspapers may lay off more staff members, Crain’s Detroit reports

Over the past decade, the newsrooms have been severely downsized through buyouts, layoffs and attrition.

Carmack to dismiss lawsuit against Detroit, Duggan

Bob Carmack during a press conference.

Detroit businessman Bob Carmack, who has threatened to release more dirt on Mayor Duggan, has moved to dismiss his federal lawsuit against the city.

It’s the latest twist and turn in a spat between Carmack and the mayor, who called for a state police investigation, claiming the businessman was harassing his family and trying to win an early cash settlement.

Last week, a federal judge expressed “very serious concerns” over the handling of Carmack’s lawsuit.

It wasn’t immediately clear if that’s why Carmack is dropping the lawsuit.

Carmack made headlines last month after he broadcast video taken by a private investigator, showing the mayor driving to the suburbs late at night without his security personnel.

Carmack is a key witness in a bribery indictment against Detroit City Councilman Gabe Leland, who allegedly demanded money to help Carmack with one of his businesses.

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Steve Neavling

Steve Neavling lives and works in Detroit as an investigative journalist. His stories have uncovered corruption, led to arrests and reforms and prompted FBI investigations.