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Michigan, United States
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Web Design in Michigan, United States
Michigan is a Great Lakes state in the upper Midwest of the United States. With a population of about 10 million, it is the tenth most populous state and the eleventh largest in terms of area, with the largest area east of the Mississippi. Michigan's name comes from the Ojibwe word misikami (mishigami), which means "great water" or "great lake.".
Its capital is Lansing, and its largest city is Detroit. Michigan is the only state that consists of two peninsulas. The lower peninsula is shaped like a glove. Detroit is the world's most populous country and has the largest urban economy.
The Mackinac Bridge connects the peninsulas. Michigan has the longest freshwater coast in the world, bounded by four of the five Great Lakes and Lake St. Clair. The state has 64,980 inland lakes and ponds.
The area has been occupied by a number of Indian tribes for thousands of years. Inhabited in the 17th century by the natives of Metis and French explorers, the area was claimed as part of the New French colony. After the defeat of France in the French and Indian wars in 1762, the region came under British rule. Britain ceded the region to the newly independent United States after its defeat in the American Revolutionary War.
The area was part of the larger Northwest Territory until 1800 when Western Michigan became part of Indiana Territory. It was founded in 1805, but the northern border with Canada was not agreed until after the war of 1812. The region was admitted to the Union in 1837 as the 26th and later as a free state.
It developed into an important industrial and commercial centre in the Great Lakes region and was a popular destination for emigration in the late 19th and early 20th centuries with immigrants from many European countries; the state was particularly busy with emigrants from Finland, Macedonia and the Netherlands at that time.
The state has developed a diverse economy, but is best known as the center of the US automotive industry, which became a major economic power in the twentieth century. Michigan is home to the country's three largest automobile companies, all of which are headquartered in Detroit. The Upper Peninsula is important for tourism owing to its wealth of natural resources, while the Lower Peninsula is a centre of manufacturing industry, forestry, agriculture, services and high-tech industry.
Michigan is governed as a republic by three branches of government - the executive, consisting of the Governor of Michigan and other elected constitutional officials - the legislative, consisting of the House and the Senate - and the judiciary.
The Michigan Constitution permits direct voter participation through legislative initiative, plebiscite, recall, constitutional initiative, and submission (Article II pp. 9-34), which defines the power to propose, enact, or reject laws (so-called "initiatives"), and the power to approve or reject them (the Legislature) by calling a referendum.
The right of initiative extends only to laws passed by the legislature under the Michigan Constitution.
The governor and other state constitutional officials serve for four years and are re-elected annually. The current governor is Gretchen Whitmer. Michigan has two official gubernatorial residences, one in Lansing and the other on Mackinac Island. Lansing is the state capital and home to all three state governments.
The other elected executive officers are the Deputy Governor, elected jointly with the Governor, as well as Secretary of State and Attorney General. The lieutenant governor presides over the Senate, which votes on cases involving cabinet members. The Secretary of State is also the Chief Electoral Officer and is responsible for the implementation of many licensing programmes, including motor vehicles, which are carried out through the Foreign Minister's field office.
The Michigan State Capitol, inaugurated in 1879, houses the state's executive and legislative branches. Michigan's legislature consists of the 38-member Senate and the 110-member House of Representatives. Senators serve four years at the same time as the governor, while representatives serve two years.
Members of the Michigan Legislature will be elected after the election to districts with equal population boundaries that match county and municipal boundaries.
Michigan's judiciary consists of two primary jurisdictional courts, the Circuit Court and the District Court, and an intermediate court of appeals, the Michigan Court of Appeals and the Michigan Supreme Court. There are also several administrative courts and specialized courts. The District Court is the court with the most limited jurisdiction to handle most traffic violations, minor claims, misdemeanors and civil lawsuits involving amounts less than $25,000.
It is also responsible for carrying out preliminary investigations and setting bail in cases of crime. District judges are elected for six years. District courts are competent for decisions of district and local courts as well as for decrees of state authorities.
Circuit Courts are the only courts in the state of Michigan with the power to issue appropriate remedies. Circuit Court is the only court in the state of Michigan with the power to issue a fair appeal. All 57 Circuit Courts in Michigan are originally responsible for civil litigation (in which the number of cases in dispute exceeds $25,000) and criminal cases related to crimes.
Most counties have their own Circuit Court, although some sparsely populated counties share their Circuit Court. In some locations, the local courts remain excluded from the establishment of local courts.
The judges on the Circuit Court are elected for six years. Judges on the state Court of Appeals are also elected for terms of up to six years, with vacancies filled by appointment by the governor.
The Michigan Supreme Court is made up of seven members elected on a non-partisan ballot for staggered eight-year terms. The original jurisdiction of the courts, except in very narrow circumstances, lies in appellate jurisdiction over the entire state legal system.
All cases are heard before the Court of Appeal by a panel of three judges who examine the application of the law, not the facts of the case, except for serious errors of fact. There are four divisions of the appeals court: Detroit, Grand Rapids, Lansing and Marquette.
Rank Name County Pop.
1 Detroit Wayne 672,662 Warren 2 Grand Rapids Kent 200,217 3 Warren Macomb 134,587 4 Sterling Heights Macomb 132,964 5 Ann Arbor Washtenaw 121,890 6 Lansing Ingham 118,427 7 Clinton Charter Township Macomb 100,800 8 Flint Genesee 95,943 9 Dearborn Wayne 94,333 10 Livonia Wayne 93,971