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Snyder signs law to allow issuing public danger alerts

Candice Williams
The Detroit News

Gov. Rick Snyder signed legislation Friday that will allow Michigan residents to receive alerts in the event of a serious public safety emergency, state officials announced.

Information would be transmitted via radio, television stations and wireless devices.

“Leveraging current technology to quickly warn Michiganders of imminent threats will be valuable for preventing greater harm during dangerous incidents and senseless acts of violence,” Snyder said in a Friday statement.

The Public Threat Alert System was created in the wake of the Kalamazoo County mass shootings in February in which Uber driver Jason Dalton is accused of opening fire in multiple locations, killing six people and injuring two.

Following the incident, Kalamazoo residents requested a warning system to alert the public of dangerous situations.

The legislation, Senate Bill 976 and House Bills 5442 and 5567, were sponsored by state Sen. Mike Nofs, R- Battle Creek, and state Reps. Brandt Iden, R- Portage, and David Maturen, R-Brady Township, respectively.

The legislation creates criminal penalties for anyone who makes a false report. Offenders will also have to reimburse local agencies for the cost of responding to false reports.

cwilliams@detroitnews.com

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