Whitmer calls for $1.4 billion spending on Michigan childcare

BY: - June 14, 2021

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Monday announced a proposal to invest $1.4 billion in federal child care funding to expand access to high-quality child care, make child care more affordable, and support child care professionals as part of her administration’s Economic Jumpstart Plan. “All families deserve access to quality child care that meets their needs and […]

Whitmer unveils plan to boost jobs, childcare with federal COVID relief funds

BY: - June 3, 2021

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Thursday announced a new plan to invest in Michigan workers and small businesses by using a portion of federal relief funds. The “Michigan Economic Jumpstart Plan” would increase incentives for higher wages, give grant money to small businesses and expand childcare access for working families. “As we continue to take steps […]

Why the state lottery stayed successful during the pandemic

BY: - June 1, 2021

Casinos were closed in Michigan for months after the pandemic hit the state in March, but that didn’t stop Michiganders from playing their odds through the lottery. In fact, during the special August 2020 Consensus Revenue Estimating Conference (CREC), Senate Fiscal Agency Chief Economist David Zin said that during the pandemic, the Michigan State Lottery […]


Peter Ruark: Unemployment Insurance is not to blame for the so-called labor shortage

BY: - May 25, 2021

We’ve all seen the recent news coverage and memes going around about some businesses’ struggles finding workers right now. A coworker of mine even said one local fast food restaurant was putting mini-job applications in with every drive-thru order. But while this is certainly a very real issue right now as Michigan and the rest […]


Ron Bieber: Mean-spirited GOP attacks on unemployed workers must stop

BY: - May 21, 2021

Over the last several weeks, the dated, racist myth of the “welfare queen” has taken on a new form as corporations and Republican politicians have worked together to advance a false narrative that unemployment benefits are incentivizing people not to work.  Let’s get a couple things straight: First, the last president oversaw four years of […]

As many Michiganders continue to struggle, Republicans call for an end to emergency jobless benefits

BY: - May 19, 2021

Updated, 2:17 p.m., 5/19/21 Yolanda Murray, a laid-off Westin Book Cadillac Hotel food service worker, has been receiving unemployment insurance during much of the COVID-19 pandemic. “I’m just trying to maintain,” she said. “Trying to maintain what I can maintain.” About 75% of Murray’s Unite Here Local 24 hospitality-industry colleagues remain unemployed, according to Nia […]


Gilda Z. Jacobs: It’s up to Congress to continue Biden’s commitment to Michigan families

BY: - May 10, 2021

President Joe Biden’s first address to Congress last month was momentous in a multitude of ways. As a woman who held elected office for more almost three decades, hearing the words, “madam vice president” and “madam speaker,” was particularly powerful, as was seeing two women — including a woman of color — seated in literal […]

State depts. to review severance agreements after Whitmer admin. payouts

BY: - March 9, 2021

After news reports about top state officials receiving hefty severance packages on their way out the door, state departments will be reviewing these deals moving forward.  The first such case reported was former Department of Health and Human Services Director Robert Gordon, who received a $155,000 severance in exchange for “releasing all claims against” the […]

Senate passes coronavirus relief, bill now returns to the House

BY: - March 6, 2021

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Senate passed President Joe Biden’s nearly $2 trillion stimulus plan Saturday afternoon after wrangling over an amendment to trim unemployment benefits derailed the bill’s passage for nearly an entire day. The Senate version, which does not include a federal minimum wage hike and puts limits on the funding for state and […]


Column: How state and federal action have helped curb COVID-19’s economic impact

BY: - January 19, 2021

While the deplorable attack on the U.S. Capitol has cast a long shadow over 2021, there is still a lot of hope on the horizon with regard to the other crisis facing our nation and of Michigan. Two iterations of the COVID-19 vaccine are being distributed to essential and frontline workers. The initial shock of […]

Michigan’s budget picture improves, but state treasurer says more federal relief is needed 

BY: - January 15, 2021

Budget experts are cautiously optimistic about Michigan’s fiscal outlook after many were concerned the COVID-19 pandemic would lead to a long economic downturn , but their hope is contingent on more federal relief aid. The current Fiscal Year 2021 budget is in better shape than what was predicted in August by more than $1.2 billion, […]

Whitmer signs unemployment extension, angers GOP in vetoing $220M ‘giveaway’ to big businesses

BY: - December 29, 2020

Updated, 12:44 p.m. 12/29/20 Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Tuesday signed a $106 million bipartisan COVID-19 stimulus bill as well as an extension of jobless benefits for those impacted by the pandemic for an extra six weeks. “I proposed this stimulus plan to the legislature in November because I know how much our families, frontline workers, […]