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Lt. Gov. Brian Calley Trade Mission to the United Kingdom, Ireland

LANSING, Mich. – Lt. Gov. Brian Calley will lead a delegation of state and business leaders on a trade mission to the United Kingdom and Ireland, leaving Saturday. This will be the Snyder administration’s first trip to the two countries, with a focus on strengthening trade relationships and attracting job creating investments, primarily with aerospace and automotive companies.

“We have a great opportunity during our first visit to these two countries to tell the Michigan story and help create trade and business prospects for Michigan companies,” Calley said. “We will proudly deliver the message that Michigan is the best place to invest in company growth and create jobs due to our business climate and outstanding talent.”

Calley will depart for the U.K. on Saturday, Sept. 24, where he will meet with British government officials and company leaders before traveling to Ireland and returning to Michigan on Saturday, Oct. 1.

Michigan Economic Development Corporation Auto Sector Senior Vice President Kevin Kerrigan and other MEDC officials also are joining the trip, as well as representatives from local economic development agencies and companies including Oakland County, Comerica Bank, Consumers Energy, and Clayton & McKervey P.C.

In addition, leaders from nine Michigan companies seeking to sell their products and services in the U.K. and Irish markets will join Calley on the trip. The companies will be participating in meetings with prospective customers, distributors and strategic partners. The group will receive customized market research, market entry strategy and business service support.

“Our growing presence in the aerospace sector, and our innovative technologies in manufacturing, IT and electronics, alternative energy, and business support services, have global appeal and we welcome the opportunity to explore smart trade partnerships,” MEDC CEO Steve Arwood said. “Diverse industries and ease of entry into other countries provide an excellent opportunity for Michigan companies to increase their exports.”

The companies participating in the mission are:

  • FlowerHouse, Clio – Manufacturer of innovative greenhouses, plant covers and other gardening and landscaping equipment
  • Dell Marketing Systems, Rochester Hills – Provider of marking devices and marking inks to the automotive industry
  • Panagon Systems, Macomb – Manufacturer of aftermarket hydraulic piston pumps and parts
  • Clear Image Devices, Ann Arbor – Manufacturer of advanced medical imaging equipment
  • Logos Logistics, Taylor – Provider of integrated supply chain solutions
  • Tranor Industries, Detroit – Supplier of body stamping dies
  • Fluxtrol, Auburn Hills – Developer and manufacturer of magnetic flux controllers using proprietary soft magnetic composites
  • Menawat & Co., Saline – Provider of business analytics to manufacturing and services organizations
  • IBS Global Consulting, Inc., Troy – Business development and marketing consulting firm specializing in helping small and medium-sized enterprises expand into international markets

In addition to the company leaders, representatives from the Northern Michigan Unmanned Aerial Consortium will join the trade mission.

 

This is Calley’s sixth mission since taking office in 2011. He previously led missions to India, Chile/Colombia, Brazil, Mexico and the Netherlands.  

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NASA Awards Launch Range Operations Services Contract

NASA has awarded a sole-source bridge contract to LJT and Associates Inc. of Columbia, Maryland, to continue critical launch range operations support at the agency’s Wallops Flight Facility in Wallops Island, Virginia.

Read more here:: NASA Awards Launch Range Operations Services Contract

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NASA Awards Contract for Security Services at its Stennis Space Center

NASA has awarded a contract to RiverTech, LLC, of Colorado Springs, Colorado, for a range of security services at the agency’s Stennis Space Center near Bay St. Louis, Mississippi.

Read more here:: NASA Awards Contract for Security Services at its Stennis Space Center

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NASA iTech Fosters Technology Needed for Journey to Mars

NASA is seeking innovative technology for the agency’s future exploration missions in the solar system and beyond, including the Journey to Mars, from other U.S. government agencies, academia, the aerospace industry and the public through the new iTech initiative.

Read more here:: NASA iTech Fosters Technology Needed for Journey to Mars

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NASA to Hold Media Call on Evidence of Surprising Activity on Europa

NASA will host a teleconference at 2 p.m. EDT Monday, Sept. 26, to present new findings from images captured by the agency’s Hubble Space Telescope of Jupiter’s icy moon, Europa.

Read more here:: NASA to Hold Media Call on Evidence of Surprising Activity on Europa

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Childhood Cancer Patients to Speak with NASA Astronaut on Space Station

Patients from The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston will have the opportunity to speak with a NASA astronaut currently living and working on the International Space Station at 3:55 p.m. EDT on Friday, Sept. 16.

Read more here:: Childhood Cancer Patients to Speak with NASA Astronaut on Space Station

Water Resources Development Act Passes U.S. Senate, Includes Assistance for Flint

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) and Gary Peters (D-MI) today announced Senate passage of the Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) by a vote of 95 to 3, which included their bipartisan agreement to help families in Flint and other communities across the country. The U.S. House of Representatives must now pass the legislation and send it to the President for his signature.

The Stabenow-Peters agreement provides access to $100 million in funding to help repair Flint’s drinking water infrastructure; funding to activate over $1 billion in low-interest loans to upgrade water infrastructure in communities in Michigan and across the country; $50 million to address health care needs of children who have lead exposure; authority for the State of Michigan to forgive $20 million in past drinking water loans to Flint; and a requirement that EPA warn the public within 15 days of high lead levels in drinking water if a state fails to do so.
“After months of working intensely with colleagues on both sides of the aisle to overcome opposition, I am extremely pleased that the Senate has finally passed urgently needed help for families in Flint,” said Senator Stabenow. “Today’s passage is an important reminder to the nation that the crisis in Flint is far from over. Today families still cannot drink the unfiltered water that comes out of their faucets! Now, our colleagues in the House need to act as quickly as possible. It’s also essential that the State of Michigan fully meet their responsibilities to solve the water crisis.”

“Flint residents have been living with contaminated water for far too long and are still relying on bottled water and filters for drinking, cooking and bathing,” said Senator Gary Peters. “I am pleased the Senate came together to pass this bipartisan, fully paid-for legislation to provide much-needed support for Flint families. I urge my colleagues in the House to swiftly pass similar assistance to help Flint and other communities across the country make critical investments to upgrade their aging water infrastructure. While the federal government can and should help Flint recover from this ongoing crisis, the State of Michigan must step up with sustained, long-term support for the people of Flint.”

In addition to the Stabenow-Peters agreement, WRDA includes $40 million for two new programs to help communities reduce lead in drinking water systems and to help rural communities improve drinking water. The bill also authorizes $100 million in grants to test lead in drinking water at schools and child care facilities and requires the electronic reporting of drinking water data.

Stabenow-Peters Agreement Summary:

$100 Million Available to Help Flint Fix and Repair Water Infrastructure

The Stabenow-Peters agreement provides $100 million in new federal funding to the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund. The State of Michigan can access these funds after submitting a comprehensive plan to the EPA. This funding will only be available to a community, like Flint, that received a federal emergency declaration by the President due to a public health threat from high amounts of lead in drinking water. These funds can be accessed after the State of Michigan and the City of Flint submit a comprehensive plan to the EPA.

State Option for Debt Forgiveness
The State of Michigan will be given new flexibility to use funding from the Drinking Water State Revolving Loan Fund to forgive Flint’s debts incurred prior to fiscal year 2016. Flint is currently paying interest on approximately $20 million in old Drinking Water State Revolving Fund loans.

Over $1 Billion in Water Infrastructure Financing Innovation Fund

The agreement also provides $70 million in funding to activate over $1 billion in low-interest loans to finance much-needed upgrades to water infrastructure. These loans will be made possible through the Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA), which will be available to communities in all states, including Michigan.

$50 Million for Public Health

The agreement provides $17.5 million for the Department of Health and Human Services to create a national registry to monitor health effects of children exposed to lead, and $2.5 million for an advisory committee to review ways to reduce lead exposure.

Another $30 million is provided to three different federal programs that fund efforts to address the short- and long-term effects of lead poisoning, including assistance to pregnant women and new mothers, and public education on the dangers of lead exposure. This funding also provides resources to help state efforts to identify and address environmental health and public safety issues associated with lead, mold, carbon monoxide, and radon in homes and soil.

Public Notification

The agreement also includes legislation introduced by Senators Peters, Stabenow and Congressman Kildee requiring the EPA to warn the public in the future of high lead levels in drinking water if a state fails to do so. The bill also allows EPA to notify residents and health departments of any results of lead monitoring, whether or not the amount of lead in the water exceeds the action level.

No Cost to Taxpayers

The Stabenow-Peters agreement is fully paid for by sunsetting funding for an existing program at the Department of Energy.

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NASA Television to Air Launch of Next International Space Station Crew

Three crew members headed to the International Space Station are scheduled to launch on Friday, Sept. 23. Live launch coverage will begin at 1:15 p.m. EDT on NASA Television and the agency’s website.

Read more here:: NASA Television to Air Launch of Next International Space Station Crew

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White House, NASA to Discuss Asteroid Redirect Mission’s Importance for Journey to Mars, Planetary Defense

NASA will provide three virtual updates on two planned Asteroid Redirect Missions (ARM) Wednesday, Sept. 14 at the agency’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. NASA Television will provide coverage at 11 a.m. EDT of the first briefing to discuss ARM’s contributions to the Journey to Mars and protection of our planet.

Read more here:: White House, NASA to Discuss Asteroid Redirect Mission’s Importance for Journey to Mars, Planetary Defense

First Lady Sue Snyder set to host second “Inform. Empower. Prevent. Let’s End Campus Sexual Assault” Summit September 30th

LANSING, Mich. — To continue the fight against sexual assault on Michigan’s college and university campuses, First Lady Sue Snyder today announced the second “Inform. Empower. Prevent. Let’s End Campus Sexual Assault” summit will be held on Friday, Sept. 30 at the University of Michigan’s North Campus Research Complex in Ann Arbor.

“Putting an end to sexual assaults on our college and university campuses—our student’s homes away from home—is something that needs to continue to be a high priority,” Snyder said. “We have already taken tremendous steps in finding ways to increase awareness and prevention of campus assaults, but there is still more work to be done.

“This summit is an opportunity to continue the important conversations already started and bring together Michiganders who share a common goal of ultimately putting an end to campus sexual assault.”

The summit focuses on university officials, lawmakers, law enforcement, students, and topic experts to encourage the end of sexual assault on the campuses of Michigan’s colleges and universities. This year, the effort will extend to the high school community and also promote collaboration on best practices for colleges and universities to work with student groups like Greek life and athletics.

Since the first summit last year, the state launched the Campus Sexual Assault Grant Program, aimed to change the overall sexual assault culture among the college-age population. Colleges and universities were able to apply for a portion of the $500,000 grant to create campus sexual assault prevention strategies. Twenty-three Michigan colleges and universities received funding, which was recently approved by the Legislature again this year.

Additional information on summit details and its initiatives are available at www.endcampussexualassault.com.

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