Zahra Ahmad, MLive

Zahra Ahmad


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Past articles by Zahra:

Secretary of state branches to stick with appointments, end number taking

Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson announced Thursday that branch offices statewide will continue booking appointments and end the traditional process of customers taking numbers and waiting to be served. → Read More

Michigan secretary of state wants to allow driver’s license photos to be taken from home

Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson’s is proposing a variety of changes to customer service operations that will need support from the Legislature, including the option of taking driver’s license and state ID photos remotely. → Read More

Former Michigan health director acknowledges disagreements with Whitmer before resignation

Former Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Director Robert Gordon testified Thursday that he and the governor disagreed on coronavirus decisions regarding “gray areas” of science before his resignation. → Read More

Victims of human trafficking ‘have suffered enough,’ says lawmaker advocating for more legal leniency

The Michigan House Judiciary Committee heard testimony on a set of bills that would broaden state laws regarding criminal record expungement for human trafficking victims on Wednesday, April 28 → Read More

House Dems hire new spokespeople after months of unusual arrangement with outside firm

Using an outside public relations firm in place of publicly funded communication directors was an unusual arrangement that some said raises ethical red flags. → Read More

They keep trying, but lawmakers have been unable to limit Michigan health department’s authority

Republican legislators in the Michigan House and Senate have passed a number of bills that would limit the powers of state health authorities to issue wide-reaching epidemic orders, but it remains unlikely any will become law. → Read More

Michigan residents access more Secretary of State transactions online after massive technology update

More than 10,000 residents made SOS transactions after the Michigan Department of State successfully updated its systems → Read More

Michigan redistricting commission sets statewide public hearings

The Michigan Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission will hold 16 public hearings throughout the state starting on May 11. → Read More

Michigan raises daily vaccination goal to 100,000 shots after feds ramp up allocations

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Wednesday announced an increase in Michigan’s COVID-19 vaccination goal from 50,000 to 100,000 shots per day. → Read More

Michigan Senate passes bill that would tie restaurant closures to COVID-19 cases

The Michigan Senate passed a bill Thursday that would tie restaurant closures and occupancy rates to the state’s number of coronavirus cases and hospital bed availability → Read More

Michigan Secretary of State testifies at U.S. Senate hearing on voter reform bill

Passed by the U.S. House on March 3 and now being considered in the Senate, the legislation seeks to boost access to the ballot box, reduce the influence of big money in politics and strengthen ethics rules for public servants, according to Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minnesota, chair of the Senate Committee on Rules and Administration. → Read More

Michigan House committee revives bill to prohibit sale of vaping products with vitamin E acetate

The Regulatory Reform Committee passed three bills involving Vitamin E acetate and one bill amending Michigan's marijuana operating licensing law → Read More

Michigan Senate passes bill stopping health officers from banning family gatherings during pandemics

State senators passed SB 257 with a 20-15 vote, which would prohibit health department officers from issuing emergency orders that ban any number of family members from gathering at sporting events, private residences or at a restaurant. → Read More

Conditions tied to stimulus funds pose problems for school districts, Dems argue

Many Michigan schools started offering at least 20 hours of in-person learning Monday to secure additional funding during the COVID-19 pandemic, and some Democrats are arguing the conditional aid puts districts in a difficult position. → Read More

The pandemic changed the way we eat and get food

Michigan residents share how their experiences with food changed during the pandemic → Read More

Anti-Asian hate instances, attacks spike but people are reluctant to report to police

More people are being harassed for their Asian-heritages during the coronavirus pandemic but they are reluctant to report to police, prompting the creation of a new method for collecting data on hate instances → Read More

Michigan workers in certain jobs given $793 grants from the state

More than 55,900 people working in entertainment, recreation, and indoor food-service venues will get $793 payments → Read More

Canadian officials testify Line 5 shutdown would have big impact on the region during Michigan Senate committee

Canadian officials mentioned an international pipeline treaty that they hope will keep the pipeline open → Read More

Some Michigan propane suppliers switching to rail cars in anticipation of Line 5 closure

Propane suppliers in the Upper Peninsula are switching to rail carts to deliver energy to their customers ahead of the anticipated Line 5 closure in May → Read More

Michigan congressional members press Biden to keep Enbridge’s Line 5 operational

Six Michigan congressional members signed a letter urging President Joe Biden to keep an oil pipeline beneath the Straits of Mackinac going → Read More