The legislation may reach Gov. Jennifer Granholm's desk by the end of the week, with votes coming as early as today.
Five states have ratified the Great Lakes Basin Compact, and Ohio's governor will sign it soon. Then Michigan and Pennsylvania would be the only states that have not approved it. Congress also must sign off.
The compact itself has wide support in Michigan because many fear that states in dry regions could look to the Great Lakes for their water needs. But the House and Senate have delayed sending the compact to Granholm because they are wrangling over accompanying water-use bills.
Negotiators on Monday settled monthslong differences over when to require state permits for the biggest water withdrawals and those affecting trout streams and whether to let regulators prevent withdrawals that would not be in the public interest. Legislators have spent more than two years working on water rules.
It's been called the Most Miserable City in America. We beg to differ.
Mary, the smiling lady of the hotel lobby, not Alexandro, the cab driver who brought me to her.
"Is this your first time in Detroit?" Mary inquired. "You're going to love it! It's just like Paris."
Minutes earlier Alexandro laughed incredulously when I told him what I'd come here to find.
"Happiness?" he scoffed. "I can't really see it. Everybody's just so miserable."
Which is what Forbes magazine said, too; the Most Miserable City in America, it claimed in a report earlier this year. "Imagine living in a city with the country's highest rate for violent crime and the second-highest unemployment rate," the article proposes, by way of introduction.
But after riding the looping downtown train -- slickly named the People Mover -- and stepping into the Greektown section of the city, where I was met by saxophones singing from opposite corners and a scene that looked like the quaint, Hollywood version of a 1940s gambling town, it was over.
Alexandro said he bought his house for $200. Really $1,700, after taxes. He didn't mention the figure as a bragging point, but it started to seem like an enticing investment plan. That was just my price point, and who wouldn't want their own pied-á-terre in this Paris of Lake Erie?
I could be happy here. I already was