Editor’s note: The following is a merging of two very similar press releases issued on July 13 and 24, 2007, by state Sen. Roger Kahn. Both releases referenced Sen. Kahn’s ethanol-fueled car and the construction of a new ethanol plant. Redundancies between the two messages have been omitted so as to create a single, complete statement. Otherwise, the statements appear in their entirety.

State Sen. Roger Kahn drove his new ethanol-fueled Chevy Impala to the Capitol [on July 24, 2007] for Senate session. Kahn’s vehicle runs on E85, an 85 percent blend of ethanol, a renewable energy source.

"It’s a great feeling to ride to work in a vehicle that not only represents energy independence but supports our local economy as well," said Kahn, R-Saginaw. "As we anticipate the construction of the state’s largest producer of renewable resources, in Ithaca, it makes good sense to promote the value of renewable resources while encouraging the creation of jobs in the community."

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Kahn recently spoke at an event welcoming Liberty Renewable Fuels and its building contractors to Gratiot County as they prepare to start construction on Michigan’s largest ethanol plant. Numerous Michigan contractors will join lead builder ICM on construction of the project. In addition to the estimated 400 construction workers needed to build the plant, 46 permanent jobs will be created for operation and support of the facility.

"Today is a great day for the people of Gratiot County," said Kahn, R-Saginaw Township, [on July 13, 2007]. "This plant will have a significant impact on both short- and long-term jobs for mid-Michigan workers and support our local farmers by requiring 40 million bushels of corn each year to operate. This is a terrific achievement and I want to congratulate all parties involved on making this a reality."

Expected to be completed in the third quarter of 2008, the Ithaca ethanol plant will be Michigan’s largest producer of renewable resources, producing 110 million gallons of ethanol annually. Additionally, the facility will generate 354,000 tons of distiller’s grains for animal feed. Five million vehicles in the U. S. today are flexible fuel vehicles capable of running on a mix of 85 percent ethanol and 15 percent gasoline commonly called E85.

"I own an E85 Chevrolet Impala, and I encourage every Michigan resident to consider a renewable fuel vehicle when purchasing their next automobile," said Kahn. "Alternative fuels like ethanol represent a positive collaboration between Michigan’s agricultural and automotive industries that will rejuvenate our struggling economy and take steps toward achieving America’s goal of energy independence."

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Renting out the family summer cottage is a common practice in Michigan, and with today’s technologies, it’s easier than ever, empowered by services like AirBnB, HomeAway, VRBO and more. These short-term rentals mean vacationers can find a place much more easily and inexpensively, while owners can earn some extra money. It seems like a win-win. Not everyone agrees. Some in the accommodations and tourism industries aren’t happy with the increased competition and are advocating for limiting people’s rights to rent out their homes. Some homeowner associations are pushing back as well. And while cities like Detroit and Grand Rapids have mostly embraced home sharing, some local governments have restricted and even banned the practice.

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