Mike Thompson


Mike Thompson is a 1975 graduate of Delta College. He was a reporter for The Saginaw News for 33 years before he began writing for Review Magazine.
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Saginaw city government is taking two main steps for neighborhood improvement. One approach involves an infusion of $17.4 million. The other strategy comes at no added cost. Back in 2009, a few months before City Hall landed the big economic stimulus grant with federal cash funneled through the Michigan State Housing Development Authortity (MSHDA), staff members formed the Saginaw Code Enforcement Neighborhood Improvement Cooperative.

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As Christmas approaches, people who normally don’t invest a lot of time or money into worthy causes will sometimes feel inspiration “to do something” over the holidays for the less fortunate.

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EDITOR’S NOTE: For this in-depth report on Saginaw County law enforcement’s future based on the recent election, we endeavored to survey the 15 members of the Board of Commissioners.

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With the mid-term elections looming ahead on Tuesday, November 2nd, we hope you have found the Candidate Forums that we’ve been conducting the past several editions informative and helpful. In terms of practicality, however, even the best-informed voters can get confused, as was proven back in Florida during the 2000 Presidential Election.

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Most Republican candidates for the Saginaw County Board of Commissioners say they are protecting citizens from higher property taxes. Democrats say they are protecting public safety through the Sheriff’s Department and giving voters a choice.

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The result of the City of Saginaw’s master plan citizens’ survey at saginawmasterplan.com, in a small way, will reflect upon where citizens have changed their opinions regarding casinos. Would a casino create jobs and boost the local economy? Or, would a casino create a “negative element” and prey upon gambling addictions that harm individuals and families? Many years back, during the 1980s, Saginawians dealt with this issue.

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Read it and weep? Or, read it and plan? Spicer Group’s master plan process for the City of Saginaw starts with the first of five steps: Learn about the community. And on the website keeping track, saginawmasterplan.

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The Saginaw Spirit is entering its ninth season and the team has drawn more than 1 million fans, but within the hockey establishment, Saginaw often is still found pursuing respect. For the past two seasons, the Spirit defied predictions and made strong pushes during the regular season and into the Ontario Hockey League playoffs.

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Imagine you are out and about, the air turns still and dark clouds hover. Your cell phone rings. Central dispatch informs you that there’s a tornado warning.  You now have an opportunity to inform loved ones.

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The numbers all are difficult to understand, of course, but we could have gotten a better deal on preserving Saginaw’s police and fire services than the one offered during the recent August primary.

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Who are these protesters that gather on occasion near the gazebo in Borchard Park across from the Saginaw County Courthouse, accusing Sheriff Bill Federspiel of wrongly raiding and harassing medical marijuana growers and caregivers? Passing motorists blow their horns in support, while some shout perceptions such as “potheads” and “druggies” out of their open car windows, but the demonstrators say they believe medical marijuana to be a vital and valuable alternative medicine, and that the THC ingredient is a proven natural pain reliever that provides potential to cure or slow the spread of cancer.

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In a typical K-12 school budget, 80 to 85 percent of costs are for personnel. This includes not only salaries, but also fringe benefits and pensions. And this includes not only teachers and administrators, but also support staff such as cafeteria workers and bus drivers and janitors.

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Organizers on the Saginaw City Complete Count Committee have a pair of numbers in focus as they prepare for the 2010 U.S. Census. One key figure is 50,000, a population figure that the city must maintain to remain in line for maximum federal funds for programs such as block grants.

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How much mercury is too much mercury? How much carbon dioxide is too much carbon dioxide? And in a very real sense -  which way does the wind blow?          These are among questions linked to a proposed vast expansion of Consumers Energy’s proposal for vast expansion of the Karn/Weadock Plant at the mouth of the Saginaw River in Hampton Township (Essexville).

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Congressman Dave Camp (below) represents a Fourth District that begins in northwest Saginaw County surrounding Freeland. The Fourth District extends through Camp's hometown of Midland and stretches all the way up into the Traverse City area.

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