Business + Labor

COMMENTARY

Column: Michigan has had a sea change in childcare

BY: - September 25, 2021

In less than a week, I will be retiring after more than three decades of working to improve public policy for Michigan children and families. And as I take one last look at the policy landscape before my personal role in it changes, I can unequivocally say that the appreciation of the importance of childcare […]

Black business leaders applaud Detroit chamber’s focus on equity but say more needs to be done

BY: - September 24, 2021

Black business leaders in Detroit on Thursday applauded the Detroit Regional Chamber of Commerce for offering several Mackinac Policy Conference sessions centered on racial diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) but urged the business and financial lending communities to do more to support African American businesses.  “I’m new to the chamber, and I’m about inclusion,” said […]

Foster care grads needed lawmakers’ help during COVID. That didn’t come until the last minute.

BY: - September 24, 2021

Michael Davis-Thomas has big plans.  The 24-year-old from Bay City wants to run for office — at first, for the state House or Senate and, ultimately, for president. But before he can fully dedicate himself to a life in politics, Davis-Thomas has to figure out how he’s going to afford the $2,000 he needs to […]

Study: Michigan avoided slow job growth by extending COVID unemployment benefits

BY: - September 24, 2021

In July, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer vetoed a GOP bill that would have ended emergency COVID-19 unemployment benefits two months before they were set to expire. That decision likely prevented Michigan from being one of many states that saw substantially less job growth by axing those benefits early, according to a new study released Friday by […]

COMMENTARY

Susan J. Demas: The Mackinac Conference lauds civility, but Kent Co. conflicts tell another tale

BY: - September 23, 2021

“Civility still lives here at the Mackinac conference,” Detroit Regional Chamber of Commerce CEO Sandy Baruah declared while kicking off the (usually) annual Mackinac Policy Conference on Tuesday. But apparently, that value is waning more than 200 miles southwest of the storied island in business-friendly Grand Rapids, once the unofficial home of “Michigan Nice.” While […]

Yale physician: Aftershocks of COVID-19 will last until 2024

BY: - September 22, 2021

“In my judgment, we’re not yet at the beginning of the end of this pandemic — but I do think we are at the end of the beginning,” said Nicholas A. Christakis, a Yale social scientist, physician and author, who on Tuesday gave a keynote address at the Mackinac Policy Conference. Christakis’ work currently focuses […]

Poll: Nearly 2/3 of Mich. voters want more state funding for kids and families during pandemic

BY: - September 21, 2021

State lawmakers should increase public funding for children and families to address the fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic, nearly two-thirds of Michiganders said in a recent statewide poll from the Skillman Foundation and Michigan’s Children. Across the state’s geographical regions and demographic groups, there was an overwhelming consensus among the 800 likely voters surveyed that […]

Study: Michigan Native women earn 60¢ on the dollar

BY: - September 20, 2021

Indigenous women around the country are still facing the same annual wage gap that they did a decade ago, including in Michigan, according to a recent report issued by the Washington, D.C.-based Institute for Women’s Policy Research (IWPR).  The new data highlights the historic economic inequalities for Native American and Alaska Native women that remain […]

Agriculture section of reconciliation bill centers on fighting climate change, enhancing research

BY: - September 17, 2021

WASHINGTON—The U.S. House Agriculture Committee this week finished marking up its section of the $3.5 trillion reconciliation package. The agriculture portion would provide funding for historically Black land grant colleges and investments in urban agriculture, along with boosting U.S. Department of Agriculture programs to address climate change threats in farming. The $66 billion agriculture measure passed […]

Lawmakers introduce package adding marijuana caregiver regulations, as activists protest 

BY: - September 16, 2021

Lawmakers on Tuesday announced proposed bipartisan legislation that would create a new license and add more regulations for marijuana caregivers. On Wednesday, cannabis activists held an already-planned rally in Lansing to protest the bills that leaders told the Advance earlier this week they had heard were in the works. The Michigan Cannabis Safety Act, House […]

U.S. House Dems add more mass transit, high-speed rail in 2nd shot at infrastructure bill

BY: - September 15, 2021

The U.S. House transportation panel early Wednesday passed along party lines the panel’s $60 billion slice of Democrats’ $3.5 trillion budget plan, adding nearly $20 billion for a new transit program and high-speed rail development in the states. Chairman Peter A. DeFazio of Oregon had considered these and other items underfunded in the Senate-led bipartisan infrastructure […]

Arizona attorney general first to sue over Biden vaccine mandate on private businesses

BY: - September 15, 2021

WASHINGTON — Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich on Tuesday filed the first lawsuit against the Biden administration’s upcoming COVID-19 vaccine mandate for private companies with at least 100 employees, arguing that the federal requirement violates the U.S. Constitution. In the legal complaint, Brnovich argues that the vaccine mandate President Joe Biden announced last week violates the Equal Protection Clause, claiming […]