89.1 WEMU

Cheyna Roth


Before becoming the newest Capitol reporter for the Michigan Public Radio Network, Cheyna Roth was an attorney. She spent her days fighting it out in court as an assistant prosecuting attorney for Ionia County. Eventually, Cheyna took her investigative and interview skills and moved on to journalism. She got her masters at Michigan State University and was a documentary filmmaker, podcaster, and freelance writer before finding her home with NPR. 
 
Very soon after joining MPRN, Cheyna started covering the 2016 presidential election, chasing after Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton, and all their surrogates as they duked it out for Michigan. Cheyna also focuses on the Legislature and criminal justice issues for MPRN. 
 
Cheyna is obsessively curious, a passionate storyteller, and an occasional backpacker. 
 
Follow her on Twitter at @Cheyna_R
 

Cheyna Roth / MPRN

The former dean of Michigan State University’s College of Osteopathic Medicine was found guilty Wednesday of misconduct.  Cheyna Roth reports.


Michigan State University
Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

A jury is expected to begin deliberations today in the trial of former Michigan State University Dean William Strampel.  As Cheyna Roth explains, Strampel is accused of two felonies and two misdemeanors.


MDOC
Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

The state department in charge of Michigan’s prisons is not happy with a proposed spending plan in the state Legislature.  Cheyna Roth has more.


Roads
Doug Kerr / flickr.com

A new idea to raise money to fix the state’s roads involves selling state assets to pay for the infrastructure.  As Cheyna Roth reports, the assets include the Blue Water Bridge.


Michigan State Senate
Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

New measures would ban abortions after a doctor detects a fetus’s heartbeat.  Michigan Public Radio’s Cheyna Roth reports bills were introduced Wednesday in the state Senate.


Petition
Elizabeth Jenkins / flickr.com

The Republican leadership in the state House and Senate has filed a challenge to a recent opinion by Democratic Attorney General Dana Nessel.


Cheyna Roth / MPRN

Opening statements and first witnesses were called yesterday in the criminal trial of the former dean of the College of Osteopathic Medicine at Michigan State University.  Cheyna Roth was in the courtroom for the case of The People versus William Strampel.


Adam Hollier
Ballotpedia / ballotpedia.org

A lawmaker in Michigan wants to start a task force aimed at helping curb the state’s lead problem.  The task force would not just be focused on lead in the water.


Gavel
Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

A federal judge says Michigan has to hold a special election in 2020 for certain state Senate districts.  And the Legislature and governor have to come up with new political lines for the US House, state Senate, and state House districts by August.

A federal panel of judges says the district lines were originally drawn in favor of Republicans.


Prison
Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

More money could be added to the state’s wrongful conviction fund.  Lawmakers on Thursday sent a bill to add $10 million to the fund to the governor’s desk.


Updated at 5 p.m. ET

A federal court in Michigan says that the state's Republican-controlled legislature unfairly drew some of Michigan's state legislative and U.S. House district lines and that a divided government will have to come up with new boundaries.

A panel of three judges said that 27 of 34 challenged districts diluted the weight of people's votes and that every challenged district is unconstitutional.

Roads
Ken Lund / flickr.com

Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s plan to fix the state’s roads in a single budget is getting pushback.  The head of the Republicans in the Senate has his own ideas for how to handle a new roads policy.


Cheyna Roth / MPRN

Former Michigan State University president Lou Anna Simon was in court today and will return to continue the hearing today.  A judge is deciding whether Simon should stand trial for charges that she lied to law enforcement.


Donald Trump
Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

President Donald Trump revved up his supporters in Grand Rapids last night on issues ranging from the Mueller investigation…to health care….to immigration.


Apple
Pixabay / pixabay.com

Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s plan to stop using school aid fund dollars for higher education could hit a roadblock.


Michigan State Senate
Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

Some Republican lawmakers in Lansing want to shorten the time period when a pregnant woman can get an abortion.  A bill in the Senate would make it a felony to perform abortions after 20 weeks of the probable conception.


Dana Nessel
Cheyna Roth / MPRN

It started last October.  More than 70 police officers, special agents, and government officials executed search warrants on each of the seven Catholic dioceses in Michigan simultaneously.  They loaded vehicles with boxes and filing cabinets – everything they could find related to potential sexual abuse by priests who have worked in Michigan from 1950 until now.  Attorney General Dana Nessel says Michigan is the first state to execute a search warrant on the Church in this way.  Now, Nessel says she expects her office’s investigation to last at least two years.   


Driving
Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

Michigan could become a completely hands-free driving state.  A new bill in the state House comes after Governor Gretchen Whitmer made distracted driving a priority during her State of the State address.


Gretchen Whitmer
Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

Governor Gretchen Whitmer will give her first State of the State address tonight.


Handcuffs
PxHere / pxhere.com

State lawmakers are trying to once again raise the age of who is considered an ‘adult’ in the criminal justice system.


Michigan State Senate
Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s plans to restructure the state Department of Environmental Quality could be over.


Gretchen Whitmer
Cheyna Roth / MPRN

Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s executive order to restructure the Department of Environmental Quality could be overturned before any changes are made.


Gavel
Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

A lawsuit contesting how Michigan has drawn its political district lines is headed for trial.  A 3-judge panel denied an attempt by Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson and the League of Women Voters of Michigan to settle the case out of court.


Michigan Capitol
Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

Lawmakers in Lansing are working on getting rid of the state’s tax on feminine hygiene products.  This isn’t the first attempt to get rid of the so-called “tampon tax.”


U.S. Capitol
Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

U.S. lawmakers announced the creation of a bipartisan task force Wednesday to fight PFAS chemicals.  A majority of the members on the task force are from Michigan.


Shutdown
J Sonder / flickr.com

Lawmakers in Lansing are contemplating ways to help furloughed federal employees get by until the government reopens.  There are thousands of federal employees in Michigan that haven’t been paid since December.


Michigan State Senate
Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

Democrats in the state Senate plan to try and undo a controversial bill that passed during last year’s lame duck session.


Cigarettes
Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

Some health advocates want to raise the minimum age for tobacco purchases.  The American Cancer Society also wants changes to make pricing for cancer treatments more fair in Michigan.


Updated at 7:23 p.m. ET

Students and faculty at Michigan State University have called for the resignation or firing of interim President John Engler almost from the day he was appointed. This week, they got their wish.

On Wednesday evening, MSU Board of Trustees member Dianne Byrum confirmed she had received a letter of resignation from Engler and that letter would be acted upon at the trustee meeting scheduled for Thursday morning.

Michigan House of Representatives
Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

The state Legislature returned last week to open its 100th session.


Pages