The Midwest Report – Saturday, June 15, 2013

The Midwest Report is a daily news-roundup dedicated exclusively to the American Midwest.


1)   Ohio – Story One

Ohio abortion bill would require women to share income data with doctors,” written by Arturo Garcia for Raw Story, and published on 06/14/13.

“Women’s health advocates in Ohio are furious over a new bill that would require a 48-hour waiting period before abortions and for women seeking the procedure to go over their financial situation with their doctors…

[T]he bill would mandate that women looking to undergo an abortion tell their doctor how much they make and how much income carrying the pregnancy to term would cost them. Patients would also be required to undergo an ultrasound and hear a verbal description of the fetus from their doctor during that waiting period. ‘There’s no health implication of that for the woman and for the fetus,’ Planned Parenthood of Greater Ohio president Stephanie Kight told WSYX-TV on Friday. ‘It’s just another way of shaming her.’”

2)   Ohio – Story Two

Housing options for people with mental health issues vary greatly across Ohio,” written by Jessie Balmert for the Zanesville Times-Recorder, and published on 06/15/13.

“Ohio has devoted millions of state and federal dollars to transition people with severe and persistent mental illness into apartments and group homes to save money and improve the individual’s quality of life…

But the quality and quantity of living spaces varies dramatically from place to place. Richland County has dozens of group homes established for decades, while adjacent Crawford County has no place to move people and little case worker time to divert from the growing opiate epidemic.”

3)   Illinois

Small Illinois Town Gets Boost From New Superman Movie,” written by Kane Farabaugh for Voice Of America, and published on 06/14/13.

“The release of the newest Superman movie, Man of Steel, is helping one small Illinois town cash in on its connection to one of the most beloved comic book heroes of all time. Plano, Illinois, has a population just under 11,000, and is as American as the flags flying throughout the downtown streets. Plano Mayor Bob Hausler said, ‘I would say a great Midwestern small town, and we epitomize that.’”

4)   Wisconsin

Bill Mill’ group ALEC trying to skirt open records laws in Wisconsin,” written by Laura Macomber for MSNBC, and published on 06/14/13.

“ALEC calls itself a ‘nonpartisan’ public-private partnership of state legislators and corporations, who gather regularly to produce what they term ‘model legislation’ behind closed doors. The goal is for ALEC member legislators to get versions of those model bills passed in their statehouses. Wisconsin’s state government has thick-roped ties to ALEC. Nearly one-third of its legislators are ALEC members, and versions of ALEC model bills have wended their way through many a legislative session. (Last week, I wrote about Wisconsin’s curiously high-ranking in an ALEC ‘economic outlook’ report.)

But the state also has a comprehensive open records law, declaring that “all persons are entitled to the greatest possible information regarding the affairs of government and the official acts of those officers and employees who represent them.”

5)   Minnesota

E pluribus unum One Voice Mixed Chorus in Bigfork,” written for the Grand Rapids Herald-Review, and published on 06/15/13.

“One Voice Mixed Chorus, Minnesota’s gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender (GLBT) and straight allies chorus, celebrates the finale of its 25th anniversary season with “Minnesota Voices,” a concert celebrating all things Minnesota — from the State Fair, lumberjacks and folk-songs to music on a stick!

‘Minnesota Voices’ takes place at the Edge Center for the Arts in Bigfork on June 22 at 7 p.m. and features songs by Minnesota composers from Bob Dylan, Libby Larsen, Abbie Betinis, and Rene Clausen to Prince and Semisonic.”

6)   Nebraska

Nebraska Christian college expels lesbian, charges tuition,” written for the Associated Press, and published on 06/15/13.

“Danielle Powell was going through a hard time in the spring of 2011, just months away from graduating from a conservative Christian college in Nebraska. She had fallen in love with another woman, a strictly forbidden relationship at a school where even prolonged hugs were banned.

Powell said she was working at a civil rights foundation in Mississippi to finish her psychology degree when she was called back to Grace University in Omaha and confronted about the relationship. She was eventually expelled — then sent a bill for $6,000 to reimburse what the school said were federal loans and grants that needed to be repaid because she didn’t finish the semester.”

7)    Midwest

After drought, upper Midwest now too soggy to farm,” written by Dean Reynolds for CBS News, and published on 06/14/13.

“Last July, Bob Bleuer’s farm in Channahon, Ill., was dying of thirst. Burned brown from the unrelenting drought, his corn, wheat, hay and soybean crop yields were off by two-thirds.

Now, it’s just the opposite. This has been the wettest spring in 40 years for much of the nation’s corn belt. Rainfall in parts of the upper Midwest is eight inches above normal. Three inches fell Wednesday night alone on the Bleuer farm.

So this season, his hay fields are too soggy to plow. His wheat is bent and beaten from the storms. Asked if he thinks his corn crop will be OK, he replies, ‘What isn’t under water, yes.’”

Compiled by Corey McLaughlin for Common Culture and The Big Slice.


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Author: The Blue Route

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