fbpx
Andy Balaskovitz

Andy Balaskovitz

 
 
Managing editor, covers energy, policy and economic development.

Twitter: @ABalaskovitz
Email: [email protected]

GRAND HAVEN — A West Michigan-based startup in the early stages of raising capital wants to lower the cost of and better manage energy storage and electric vehicle charging in homes.

HOLLAND — Leon Slikkers’ recent retirement as chairman of Tiara Yachts Inc. marks a new chapter for the family business, which has seen a boom in recent years as younger generations consider joining the company.

Bipartisan statewide legislation introduced earlier this summer would temporarily waive fees and expand opportunities for charitable gaming events in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

On Sept. 20, Ken James will move to a newly created administrative role at Muskegon Community College to help lead the school’s diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) strategy. To James, that means serving four distinct constituencies: students, faculty and staff, the community at large, and businesses.

HOLLAND — Leon Slikkers, a marine industry fixture whose boat-building career dates back to the 1940s, is retiring from Holland-based Tiara Yachts Inc., the company announced today.

Consumers Energy expects to start purchasing power next year from four new solar projects that will add more than 100 megawatts of renewable energy to the utility’s generation mix.

GRAND RAPIDS — Van Andel Research Institute has agreed to pay $1.1 million to settle more allegations of undisclosed foreign ties involving federal research grants, the U.S. Department of Justice announced today.

ADA — Century Technology Group Inc. continues to add to its portfolio of technology-focused companies with the acquisition of a Grand Haven-based emerging tech and media firm.

New U.S. Census findings that show some of the state’s strongest population growth is occurring in West Michigan provide an opportunity to help attract talent during an ongoing labor shortage.

Grand Valley State University’s Dorothy A. Johnson Center for Philanthropy has launched a new endowment to support professional development at local nonprofits that may not have the resources to grow.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s latest plan for spending $2.1 billion in federal COVID-19 relief includes tens of millions of dollars for clean energy initiatives. 

Representatives from local, statewide and national chambers of commerce are calling on congressional lawmakers to pass a $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill they say is critical to support local growth and talent attraction.

A recent $400 million donation to the Kalamazoo Foundation for Excellence has again raised questions about Michigan’s municipal funding model and broader issues around philanthropy paying for basic governmental services.

The committee behind a statewide ballot initiative to expand civil rights protections for LGBTQ people is prepared for a legal battle after state election officials ruled the campaign had an insufficient number of public signatures to advance the proposal.

Airport officials in Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo and Muskegon have yet to see passenger travel fully rebound to 2019 levels, but they remain optimistic about the gradual return of business travel and their ability to support capital investments.

The Food Bank Council of Michigan is partnering with state officials and local food banks to help reduce food insecurity among senior residents, an ongoing problem that was exacerbated during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Michigan Catholic Conference has contributed nearly $240,000 to a campaign committee opposing a business-backed initiative to expand Michigan’s civil rights law to include protections for LGBTQ individuals.

CADILLAC — Consumers Energy has unveiled a new “brownfield to brightfield” solar project that converted formerly abandoned industrial property into a clean energy power source.

New research from Grand Valley State University is shining an unusual spotlight on the spending activity of donor advised funds, an emerging philanthropic tool that’s gaining speed with relatively little regulatory oversight.

Hundreds of millions of dollars in American Rescue Plan funding will pour into Michigan’s federally recognized American Indian tribes, but most are still awaiting final amounts and facing key questions about how to spend the money.

As the COVID-19 pandemic wreaked havoc on tribal casino gaming revenue, officials with the non-gaming economic development arms of several Michigan tribes say their flow of capital and projects largely held steady.

ANN ARBOR — A Southeast Michigan company that started by inspecting wind turbine components by drone has evolved to provide more complex asset management that’s meant to maximize the output of a growing renewable energy sector.

Environmental and ratepayer advocates are withholding their full-throated support for Consumers Energy’s new long-term energy plan that eliminates coal usage by 2025, citing concerns over potential rate effects and the scale of ongoing fossil fuel reliance.

GRAND RAPIDS — As the city updates its nearly 20-year-old Master Plan to guide future development, local officials say a first-of-its-kind study last year can help ensure equitable outcomes while providing the best return on investments.

new legislation session in Lansing this year has brought another attempt to reinstate tax credits for charitable contributions to homeless shelters, food kitchens, food banks or community foundations.

WYOMING — Metro Health — University of Michigan Health has been renamed to University of Michigan Health-West in what health system officials say is a “natural next step” that will help “fulfill our destiny.”

Michigan’s small businesses were disproportionately harmed compared to other industries during the pandemic with significant declines in revenue and the number of businesses operating, but experts remain optimistic about a strong post-pandemic recovery.

COVERT TOWNSHIP — Local officials in Southwest Michigan got a more than $1.2 million boost last week to advance their efforts to prepare for the impending closure of the Palisades nuclear power plant. 

MUSKEGON — Facing ongoing budget constraints, the Muskegon Area Transit System (MATS) is launching a new program this week that aims to cut costs while providing the same level of service through an on-demand platform similar to Uber and Lyft.

BYRON CENTER — After selling off his telecommunications firm in the mid-2000s, Adam Harris ventured into another emerging technology field poised for rapid growth: renewable energy.