In Michigan, the seven Democrats in the U.S. House voted for and all seven Republicans voted against President Joe Biden’s $1.9 trillion pandemic aid package early Saturday, in a rush to both boost COVID-19 vaccine funding and get legislation to the president’s desk before unemployment benefits expire in mid-March. The package, dubbed the American Rescue Plan, passed 219-212.

For decades, scientists have studied the effects that livestock farms with large animal concentrations in Iowa and other states have on regional water quality, as increasing amounts of waste flow into rivers and groundwater. Now activists and some lawmakers say emergency measures are needed to stop toxic algae blooms in Lake Erie, dead zones in the Gulf of Mexico and Chesapeake Bay, and threats to drinking water in rural communities. In some states, lawmakers worry about the future of smaller family farms.

To better support the millions of Michiganders struggling to make ends meet, the state should expand apprenticeship opportunities for inmates while they are incarcerated, end asset tests for food assistance, and increase affordable housing for low-income families and people without housing, among a series of other initiatives, according to a newly released report from the Michigan Poverty Task Force.

Unconscious bias in medical care and a history of experimentation and exploitation of Blacks for medical knowledge has left many in the Black community questioning everything about the vaccines — from the racial demographics of who has been inoculated already, to whether people of color were studied in the safety and efficacy trials and whether the vaccines even work. State officials hope to ease those concerns and erase racial disparities in COVID vaccination rates.

Transparency and accountability have been buzzwords on both sides of the aisle in Michigan. Michigan scored an F in the Center for Public Integrity’s 2015 State Integrity Investigation and ranked worst in the country for state government accountability and transparency. Since then, dozens of measures have been introduced, but many haven’t been signed into law.