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State Briefs

By the Associated Press • Jan 3, 2018 at 9:00 AM

Lansing street renamed for civil right activist Cesar Chavez

LANSING (AP) — Onlookers cheered as Lansing's mayor unveiled a sign renaming a city street for civil rights activist Cesar Chavez.

More than 50 people braved below-freezing temperatures for Tuesday's ceremony for the new Cesar E. Chavez Avenue signs in the Old Town neighborhood. The name replaces Grand River Avenue in the area.

The Lansing City Council voted in October 2017 for the renaming to honor the Mexican-American who went from a grape and cotton picker to co-founder of the United Farm Workers of America in the 1960s.

Lansing for Cesar E. Chavez Committee President Al Salas told the Lansing State Journal that Chavez was a man of peace and would've been happy with the multicultural crowd at the ceremony. The newspaper reported Chavez visited Lansing several times to advocate for farm workers.

Indian tribe sets Jan. 16 opening for new South Bend casino

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — An American Indian tribe is set to open its first Indiana casino to join three it already operates in southwestern Michigan.

The Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians announced Tuesday that the Four Winds South Bend Casino will open to the public Jan. 16. It will be Indiana's first tribal casino.

The tribe said the casino will have about 1,800 games, four restaurants and three bars, and employ about 1,200 people. The new casino is on South Bend's southwest side, near the U.S. 31/20 bypass.

A study for the Casino Association of Indiana estimates the tribal casino will cut Indiana's tax revenue by more $350 million in its first five years because it will reduce business at the state's other casinos and won't pay state gambling taxes.

It's 'couth' to use neglected, expressive words, Michigan university says

DETROIT (AP) — In the wake of words deemed annoying or worthy of banishment, A Detroit university has offered up a batch it wants back in the linguistic limelight.

Wayne State University on Tuesday released its annual Word Warriors list. It includes "insuperable," meaning impossible to overcome; and "nugatory," of no value or importance. Among other "neglected" words it wants to revive are "couth," which means cultured, refined and well-mannered; and "frangible," referring to something that's fragile.

Lake Superior State University on Sunday released its 43rd annual List of Words Banished from the Queen's English for Misuse, Overuse and General Uselessness. Its top vote-getter was "fake news," which was recently found to be the second-most annoying word or phrase used by Americans in an annual Marist College poll, behind "whatever."

Number of homicides in Detroit the lowest in decades

DETROIT (AP) — Detroit's chief of police says the number of homicides in the city in 2017 was the lowest in more than 50 years.

The Detroit News cites James Craig as saying there were 267 homicides in Michigan's largest city last year. That would be the fewest number of homicides since 1966, when there were 214.

The 2017 figure still must be confirmed in a review. Department officials will hold a news conference later this week to address the numbers.

Changing demographics make the 267 number look less impressive.

The Detroit News says that, factoring in Detroit's current population of around 670,000, the rate of homicides in 2017 was around 40 per 100,000 residents. The rate in 1966, when Detroit had around 1.5 million people, was just 14 per 100,000 residents.

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