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The Michigan Department of Transportation has awarded of state transportation economic development grant to Marquette County to develop a pair of roadways to be used by a planned mining operation. Kennecott Eagle Minerals Co. says ore produced at the Eagle Mine and processed at the Humboldt Mill will require routes built to carry heavy commercial traffic year-round. Access to the mine is via Triple A Road, which is not constructed to all-season standards and access to the mill is via M-95 and CR 601, south of US-41. M-DOT says to meet traffic needs, Triple A Road will be reconstructed and paved to meet all-season standards. Because the proposed improvements will generate a significant amount of employee and commercial traffic between the two facilities, M-95 will be widened at CR 601. CR 601, which provides direct access to the Humboldt Mill, is a narrow road not built to current all-season standards. It will be widened and reconstructed. In addition, a steep hill will be flattened, and two sharp curves will be realigned to improve traffic safety and allow year-round access. The estimated cost of the project is $3,297,098, including $2,637,678 in state funds and $659,420 from Kennecott Eagle Minerals.
Menominee County authorities have arrested three people in separate bomb threats made at area schools. The most recent arrest was a 17-year old female in an incident this week at the Menominee High School. No names of any of those arrested have been released as the investigation continues. All three suspects could face terrorism charges and up to four years in prison.
A third Escanaba teenager convicted of torturing cattle at a Menominee county farm last summer has been sentenced to 18 to 48 months in prison. 17-year old Chad Meier JR. Pleaded guilty in February to three counts of aiding and abetting in the killing/torturing of an animal. The teens were arrested after two cows and a bull were found beaten on a farm in Harris Township near Wilson in July. Sheriff deputies say the animals were placed into a stanchion chute, “impaled” with a steel bar and beaten with other implements such as a shovel. Meier was 16 at the time of the incident and originally charged as a juvenile. His status was later waived and he was to be tried as an adult. Meier’s co-defendants, 18-year olds Nicholas Leisner and Peter Sauve, pleaded guilty to the same charges and are each serving to two to four years in prison.
Michigan’s unemployment rate in April fell to its lowest level in nearly four years. According to the Department of Technology, Management & Budget, the jobless rate last month edged downward by two-tenths of a percentage point to eight-point-three percent. The April rate was the lowest for the state since the eight-point-two percent rate recorded in July 2008. The Michigan jobless rate in April was over two percentage points below the state’s April 2011 rate of 10-point-five percent. The national unemployment rate last month was eight-point-one percent.