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State Briefs

By The Associated Press • Jan 12, 2019 at 8:00 AM

Michigan economy, tax revenues projected to stay stable

LANSING (AP) — Michigan's economy will keep growing but at a slower rate, resulting in stable tax revenue growth at a time new Gov. Gretchen Whitmer begins working to put her imprint on state spending.

That is among the takeaways from Friday's semiannual meeting where the state treasurer and legislative fiscal experts agreed to consensus economic and tax projections.

The Democratic governor will use the numbers when drafting her first budget proposal, due to the Republican-led Legislature in March.

Economists gave a largely positive update to state officials but also warned of risks. U.S. auto sales are expected to dip, impacting a state that is bracing for job cuts at General Motors. Economists said Michigan's strong labor market should help some workers who lose their jobs find work more quickly.

10-year-old charged after taking gun to mid-Michigan school

FLINT (AP) — A 10-year-old boy is facing charges after taking a loaded handgun to his mid-Michigan school.

Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton said Friday the boy is charged with two felonies, carrying a concealed weapon and felonious assault, and a misdemeanor charge of having a weapon in a weapons-free zone.

Leyton told WJRT-TV that the handgun was stolen, but it's unclear where the boy got it.

Police said the boy made fellow students at Eagle's Nest Academy in Flint aware that he had the gun Thursday morning, and one of them took it to administrators in the school's office. No one was injured.

The boy is in custody at the Genesee County Regional Detention Center.

Michigan teacher charged in sex case involving 2 students

ROCHESTER HILLS (AP) — A 26-year-old former suburban Detroit teacher has been charged with six counts of criminal sexual conduct involving two boys, ages 16 and 17.

Kathryn Houghtaling was arraigned Friday in Rochester Hills District Court. She has been fired from her job at Rochester High School, north of Detroit.

Authorities said the incidents took place at a home and in a vehicle in November and December 2018.

Houghtaling was a special-education teacher for one of the students. Defense attorney Zachary Glaza said in court Friday that the student was assigned to Houghtaling's classroom due to a reading deficiency.

Houghtaling of Sterling Heights was jailed on a $200,000 bond. She returns to court Jan. 24 for a probable-cause conference and Jan. 30 for a preliminary examination.

Baker College plans to close some sites in consolidation plan

FLINT TWP. (AP) — Baker College plans to close several of its Michigan campuses as part of a consolidation effort that's designed to strengthen its future educational offerings.

The Flint Journal reported the school said Thursday it plans to close its Flint Township campus by the end of August 2020 and move operations to its Owosso campus. The newspaper said Baker College also plans to move operations from Allen Park, Auburn Hills and Clinton Township to a flagship Detroit-area location.

A school statement says: "Brick-and-mortar campuses are not obsolete but evolving." It says the school "will be able to combine resources and student bodies resulting in a more focused, streamlined enterprise for the next century." Affected students will get scholarship packages.

Baker College traces its roots back more than 100 years to Flint. It also has a campus in Muskegon.

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