Morning Briefing Sept. 9, 2021: New bridge at Tahquamenon Falls triggers debate, viral video shows Washtenaw County high school students protesting mask mandate

Here are this morning’s top stories

Tahquamenon Falls.
Tahquamenon Falls. (WDIV)

New bridge at famous Upper Peninsula tourist attraction leads to heated debate

One of Michigan’s most popular tourist attractions is getting a bit of a facelift, and some are none too pleased about it.

On Wednesday, construction took place at Tahquamenon Falls in the state’s Upper Peninsula, where a bridge to the island on the lower falls was installed.

Learn more here.

Viral video shows maskless students protesting mandate outside Washtenaw County high school

A video shows parents in Washtenaw County urging their kids to ignore their high school’s mask mandate and enter the school.

The Manchester Community Schools district originally had masks optional. However, when the county’s emergency health order went into effect Tuesday, it superseded the district’s rule.

See the report here.

💳 How to detox your budget ahead of expensive holiday season

‘Blatant sexism’: State lawmakers demand equity for female Michigan State University athletes

Two Michigan lawmakers are taking issue with female college athletes being excluded from a $500 per month athletics scholarship available for all members of Michigan State University’s Spartans football and men’s basketball teams.

United Wholesale Mortgage (UWM) announced Wednesday the sponsorship deal with the university that will give 133 student athletes $500 monthly stipends. All of them are male student athletes.

Read more here.

Ford addresses Flat Rock chemical leak in virtual town hall

For the second night in a row, Flat rock Residents were invited to a town hall meeting to discuss how the city is moving forward since a dangerous benzene chemical leak was discovered days ago.

Wednesday night’s meeting was virtual, featuring panelist from multiple agencies including Ford Motor Company, which is believed to be responsible for the leak. Bob Holycross, vice president of sustainability, environment and safety engineering, explained how the situation was bigger what was initially expected.

See more here.

🚨 2 groups of teenagers get into shootout in Royal Oak Township

Grosse Pointe man gets 57 months behind bars for selling fentanyl in West Virginia

A Grosse Pointe man was sentenced to 57 months behind bars for selling fentanyl in West Virginia, federal officials said.

Darius Dashawn Wade, 27, pleaded guilty in May to one count of aiding and abetting the distribution of fentanyl, according to authorities. He was sentenced Tuesday.

Learn more here.

🚧 I-75 closing this weekend in Oakland County for overpass demolition

Weather: Morning sun, possible isolated afternoon showers

Here is the weather forecast for Metro Detroit.
Here is the weather forecast for Metro Detroit.

COVID in Michigan 🦠

Michigan reported 2,364 new cases of COVID-19 and 51 virus-related deaths on Wednesday.

Of the 51 deaths announced Wednesday, 10 were identified during a review of records.

Wednesday’s update brings the total number of confirmed COVID cases in Michigan to 964,317, including 20,447 deaths. These numbers are up from 961,953 cases and 20,396 deaths, as of Tuesday.

Wednesday’s announcement was a one-day total because data was reported on Tuesday this week instead of Monday, due to Labor Day.

Testing has increased to around 20,000 diagnostic tests reported per day on average, with the 7-day positive rate at 10.72% as of Wednesday, slightly higher than the previous week. The positive test rate has been steadily climbing since the end of June, when it was at its lowest. Hospitalizations have been steadily increasing for several weeks.

Cases are rising again in Michigan. The state’s 7-day moving average for daily cases was 1,875 on Wednesday -- a significant jump since the beginning of July. The 7-day death average was 22 on Wednesday. The state’s fatality rate is 2.1%. The state also reports “active cases,” which were listed at 57,000 on Wednesday.

Michigan has reported more than 9.6 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine administered as of Wednesday, with 66.3% of 16+ residents having received at least one dose while 57.7% of 16+ residents are considered fully vaccinated.

Here’s a look at more of the data:

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