Snyder right to veto gun bills
Gov. Rick Snyder made a good decision Thursday when he vetoed two bills that would have made it easier for individuals accused of domestic violence to have concealed weapons.
That's just asking for trouble.
The bills were backed by the National Rifle Association. While we support gun rights, this legislation went too far and could easily have led to more dangerous situations for the people involved in these domestic disputes.
Snyder acknowledged the bills included some reforms that he supports, but he couldn't agree to the language that might increase the risk of violence and intimidation for victims who seek court protection. The governor plans to work with the Legislature to revise the bills.
"We simply can't and won't take the chance of exposing domestic abuse victims to additional violence or intimidation," Snyder said in a statement.
Snyder says he favors some reforms to Michigan's concealed pistol license system, but allowing a person subject to a personal protection order to obtain a concealed license would serve no beneficial purpose.
Fewer people leaving Michigan
More people are still leaving the state than coming in, but that trend is slowing. In 2014, 55.4 percent of all the moves in Michigan handled by United Van Lines were for families headed out of the state.
While figures from the National Movers Study shows more moving out than moving in, officials at the Mackinaw Center for Public Policy, who have been tracking the data, say Michigan has improved in the rankings of states where more people are leaving than coming.
The Midland-based center says that between 2006 and 2009, Michigan was the top state in the nation in outbound moves. The new listing has Michigan ranked 14th.
While it would be preferable to see a reversal of the outbound trend, at least things are improving.
Lawmakers need to continue to work to make the state more business friendly, ultimately attracting more companies and creating more jobs so that Michigan becomes a destination for job seekers.
Students speak up
Michigan students apparently are embracing the newly established OK2SAY tip line and schools are becoming safer because of it. Aimed at thwarting school tragedies before they occur, the program urges young people to report by telephone, text, Web, email and multimedia technologies any threats of violence they believe may affect other students.
Officials are pleased with the first semester of the OK2SAY program, noting the school safety initiative generated 410 tips including 163 tips on bullying and cyberbullying, 54 threats of suicide, and 13 tips on child abuse.
OK2SAY was formed as an early warning system in schools and guarantees confidentiality. Most students want to do the right thing when it comes to protecting themselves and their classmates, and the program offers them a way to report a potential problem without fearing retaliation.
Parents and school officials should encourage students to use the tip line.