(PORT SANILAC) -- Ten farmers markets around the state will receive a portion of $200,000 in grants through the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. MEDC President and CEO Michael A. Finney says these grants will support local markets, strengthen communities and create jobs in our state. Locally, the Port Sanilac Farmers' Market was selected to receive a $10,090 grant with an $11,750 match. The market will be adding a steel-roofed pavilion to provide shelter for vendors as well as performers and other community events. Announced in June, the Farmers Market Grant Program provides one-time grants between $10,000 and $50,000 to existing farmers markets that have been in operation for at least 4-years in Michigan. A second round of food entrepreneurship grants, aimed at the food truck industry in Michigan, will be announced within the next two to three weeks.
(AREA) -- Farmers tending most of Michigan's big-acreage row crops are looking forward to what promises to be a successful 2013 harvest season. Despite delayed planting and sub-normal temperatures, adequate rains are helping boost estimated yields toward potentially record-setting levels. According to the USDA NASS Great Lakes Regional Office, Michigan's corn crop is poised for near-record production. Corn growers are looking at gleaning 158 bushels per acre, up 25 bushels from 2012. Soybean production is estimated at 85.1 million bushels, down slightly from last year, with yields forecast at 45 bushels per acre. Sugar beet growers estimate a yield of 25 tons per acre, down four tons from last year. The state's hay yield is forecast at 2.61 tons per acre, up almost a ton from last year, which is good news for livestock producers. Possibly the best news is for producers of dry, edible beans, who are expecting crops to yield 1,900 pounds per acre, up 110 pounds from last year. The average yield nationwide is forecast at 1,795 pounds per acre. Planting began in early June, and by late July, 60 percent of the crop was reported in good to excellent condition. Michigan ranks second in the nation in total dry bean production, and is the top producer of black, cranberry and small red beans.
(WORTH TOWNSHIP) -- Sanilac County Sheriff's deputies believe that a motorcyclist's helmet saved his life during a collision with a mini-van Wednesday morning. The crash took place around 11 a.m. on S. Lakeshore Road (M-25) near Fisher Road in Worth Township. A 30-year old Lexington woman driving a Dodge Caravan, was traveling south on M-25 below the speed limit as she searched for a driveway on the east side of the roadway. Deputies say another vehicle legally passed her and then she activated her left turn signal. As she began to turn into the driveway, a Kawasaki motorcycle, driven by a 58-year old Lexington man, attempted to pass the van. The motorcycle struck the front driver's side of the van and then slid a short distance. The Lexington man was transported to a Port Huron area hospital for treatment of minor injuries. The woman and her daughters inside the van were not injured.
(SANILAC COUNTY) -- Beach water testing in Sanilac County shows all beaches are safe for swimmers. The Health Department says the five bathing beaches tested include the Forester and Lexington County Parks and the Forestville, Port Sanilac and Lexington Village Parks. Waters tested safe at the Blue Water Subdivision, Forester Creek, Miller Creek and Mill Creek. The public may access beach water test results online at www.deq.state.mi.us/beach
(AREA) -- Mobile billboards featuring a tricked-out suburban Detroit police car are part of an effort to crack down on drunken driving through Labor Day weekend. The campaign involves local police departments, sheriff offices and Michigan State Police posts in 26 counties, including St. Clair County. In all, officers from 155 agencies are taking part in the effort. The billboards will feature the Novi Police Department's "cruiser-cab" - a police patrol car with the rear half covered with a wrap that looks like a taxi cab. The message to potential drunken drivers is: "Choose your ride." The ad campaign and stepped-up enforcement are paid for with federal traffic safety funds coordinated by the Michigan Office of Highway Safety Planning.
(PORT HURON) -- St. Clair County Drug Task Force officers arrested three people during two drug raids this week, leading to illegal drugs and a meth lab. Officers first made a traffic stop Tuesday around 9 p.m. on a vehicle driven by a suspect that had an outstanding felony warrant. An investigation led to a search warrant at the 53-year old Port Huron man's home in the 1700 block of Griswold Street. Officers seized heroin, analog pills, and over $750 in cash from the residence. The man was arrested and remains jailed on drug-related charges. The second raid took place during the early morning hours Wednesday at a home in the 4200 block of Lapeer Road in Port Huron Township. Officers found a methamphetamine lab inside the residence and seized meth lab components, drug paraphernalia, and marijuana. A 28-year old Port Huron man and 32-year old Detroit woman were arrested. Both remain jailed on several drug-related and habitual offender charges.
(AREA) -- The lawyer for a Detroit-area cancer specialist accused of intentionally misdiagnosing patients says his client cannot post a $9 million bond. Christopher Andreoff made the comment Wednesday, a day after a federal judge ordered bond for Dr. Farid Fata be increased from $170,000. Prosecutors asked for the higher bond for fear the 48-year-old Fata would flee the country. They say FBI tracing shows Fata and his wife have $9 million in liquid assets. A federal grand jury indicted Fata on Wednesday on health care fraud. The government says Fata ripped off Medicare by giving chemotherapy to patients who didn't need it and diagnosing cancer when it wasn't apparent. Fata owns Michigan Hematology Oncology, which has an office in Lapeer. He is being held in the Wayne County jail pending a Tuesday preliminary examination.
(CARSONVILLE) -- The Blessing of the Vines Festival at the Blue Water Winery and Vineyards is this Saturday, August 17 from 1-4 p.m. The blessing will be delivered by Monsignor Daniel Trapp from Sacred Heart Major Seminary of Detroit at 2 p.m. Music by William Henry Russell can be heard before and after the blessing. A wine and refreshment tent will be open from 1-4 p.m. The Blue Water Winery and Vineyards are located at 7131 Holverson Road, 3.5 miles south of Port Sanilac off of M-25. For more information visit www.bluewaterwinery.com or call 810-622-0328.
(MARYSVILLE) -- Authorities say a junior hockey player accused of assaulting his girlfriend now faces additional charges for stabbing her 48-year-old father. 20-year-old defenseman Dalton Young has played three seasons with the Ontario Hockey League's Saginaw Spirit. Young was arrested last Thursday after his 20-year-old girlfriend was assaulted. He was arraigned in that case and released Saturday. That night, police say Young stabbed the woman's father in the back at the family's home in Marysville. The victim was treated at a hospital and released. Reports say Young faces preliminary examination Tuesday, August 20 on charges of assault with intent to do great bodily harm less than murder and home invasion. He's being held on a bond and doesn't have an attorney.
(AREA) -- Mothers Against Drunk Driving held their annual award luncheon this month to honor and celebrate law enforcement agencies and personnel who keep communities safe and support MADD's mission by arresting drunk drivers. Two officers from the Sanilac County Sheriff's Department received honors this year. Deputy Matthew Armstrong was given the Outstanding Officer award for the second year in a row. In 2012, Deputy Armstrong made 17 OWI arrests. He also teaches D.A.R.E. and is involved in the neighborhood watch program in Sanilac County. Sgt. Steven McKenney accepted the award for Outstanding Agency. Statistics show that in just 2-years, the number of Operating While Intoxicated arrests in Sanilac County increased by over 104-percent. Sheriff Biniecki stated, "This did not simply happen; I believe it was the efforts of the Sanilac County Sheriff's Office Uniform Services team and the efforts spearheaded by Sgt. Steven McKenney."
PICTURED ABOVE: Sheriff Garry Biniecki and Deputy Armstrong; below-Sgt. McKenney