News Releases

Michigan’s forgotten talent needs adult education

For Immediate Release
Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Contact: Stacey Messina at 517.487.5436

LANSING, Mich. – Michigan is not reaching anywhere near enough of the working age adults who lack basic skills to be part of the state’s workforce development push, according to a new report released today.

Willing to Work and Ready to Learn: More Adult Education Would Strengthen Michigan’s Economy,” released by the Michigan League for Public Policy, shows that too few adults are getting the basic skills education they need to succeed in occupational training and find a way out of low-paying, dead-end jobs and into a career that can support their families.

“Michigan’s talent and workforce development efforts are severely hampered by all of these people being left behind,” League Vice President Karen Holcomb-Merrill said. “We are ignoring a huge pool of potential talent and skills that could be developed to benefit Michigan and our economy.”

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Health care tax subsidies should be available to all Americans who qualify

Contact: Judy Putnam at 517.487.5436

The U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments today in the King v. Burwell case regarding Affordable Care Act tax subsidies in Michigan and others states that did not set up their own health care exchanges. The following statement can be attributed to Michigan League for Public Policy President & CEO Gilda Z. Jacobs:

“With the health care coverage of 300,000 Michigan adults at stake, it’s important that the U.S. Supreme Court justices allow tax subsidies to stand in Michigan and other states without their own health care marketplaces. It’s clear that Congress never intended that only people in certain states could take advantage of tax subsidies. Those subsidies should be available to all Americans who qualify, regardless of geographic boundaries. (more…)

Government programs, tax policies reduce child poverty

Contact: Judy Putnam or Jane Zehnder-Merrell at 517.487.5436

Michigan rate drops in half when safety net counted

LANSING, Mich. — Michigan’s poverty rate for children drops by half when the positive effect of government programs and tax policies are taken into account, a report released today by the Annie E. Casey Foundation concludes.

In fact, 341,000 Michigan children are lifted from poverty when such programs as food assistance, federal and state Earned Income Tax Credits, cash assistance, child care assistance and housing subsidies are counted. About the same number are left in poverty.

“At a time when so many programs designed to help children and families have been cut, this is good information that shows safety net programs do work as intended,’’ said Jane Zehnder-Merrell, Kids Count in Michigan project director at the Michigan League for Public Policy, which helped release the report.

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Many kids stuck in poverty without solutions

Contact: Judy Putnam or Jane Zehnder-Merrell, 517.487.5436

Kids Count in Mich. ranks 82 counties on child well-being

LANSING, Mich. – Too many kids in Michigan remain mired in poverty at a time when policymakers have reduced help for struggling families, according to the Kids Count in Michigan Data Book 2015 released today.

Three measures of economic conditions worsened over the trend period with nearly one in every four children living in an impoverished household, a 35 percent increase in child poverty over six years. The trend period measured from 2006 to 2012 or 2013, depending on the availability of data.

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Statement: Lots to like in governor’s budget; executive order brings concern

For immediate release
Contact: Judy Putnam at 517.487.5436

The Michigan League for Public Policy today issued the following statement on Gov. Rick Snyder’s executive budget and executive order. The statement may be attributed to League President & CEO Gilda Z. Jacobs.

 “There’s a lot to like in Gov. Snyder’s executive budget. The addition of child care inspectors, more dollars for low-income students, third-grade reading initiatives and postsecondary grants for adult students are all steps in a very positive direction.

 “In addition, you can’t work or learn with a toothache and the governor’s budget addresses this by partially expanding Healthy Kids Dental to three counties as well as investing in improving Medicaid dental services for adults statewide. (more…)

Income tax cuts would hurt Michigan’s economy

Contact: Judy Putnam at 517.487.5436 (o) or 517.410.5798 (c)

LANSING, Mich. –Rolling back Michigan’s income tax would jeopardize jobs and the economy, and it’s fiscally irresponsible at a time the state has major budget shortfalls.

House Republicans last week proposed an income tax cut from 4.25 percent to 3.9 percent. A new fact sheet from the Michigan League for Public Policy explains why that’s bad for Michigan’s economic recovery.

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Lopsided income growth in Michigan

Contact: Judy Putnam at 517.487.5436
Editor’s note: A noon Monday (today, Jan. 26) media conference call will be held by the Economic Policy Institute to discuss the findings of the report. Details below.

Michigan is the 15th most unequal state in the country

The top 1 percent in Michigan took home 25 times more than the bottom 99 percent in 2012, according to new analysis published by the Economic Policy Institute for EARN — the Economic Analysis and Research Network.

In The Increasingly Unequal States of America: Income Inequality by State, 1917 to 2012, Estelle Sommelier and Mark Price update their analysis of IRS data—using the same methodology employed by Thomas Piketty and Emmanuel Saez to generate their widely cited findings—and show inequality is rising throughout the United States.

Between 1979 and 2007, the top 1 percent of taxpayers captured an increasing share of income in every state. While incomes at all levels declined as a result of the Great Recession, income growth has been lopsided since the recovery began. (more…)

Statement: State of the State strikes hopeful tone

Contact: Judy Putnam at 517.410.5798

The following statement was released by Michigan League for Public Policy President & CEO Gilda Z. Jacobs in reaction to Gov. Rick Snyder’s fifth State of the State address.

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Michigan has a revenue problem due to low business taxes

Contact: Judy Putnam at 517.487.5436

Revenue Estimating Conference: Michigan has a revenue problem due to low business taxes

The following statement was released Friday by the Michigan League for Public Policy in response to the Revenue Estimating Conference that revealed lower revenues than anticipated. The statement may be attributed to Vice President Karen Holcomb-Merrill.

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Oversight missing to ensure child care safety

Contact: Judy Putnam at 517.487.5436

LANSING, Mich. – Michigan fails to ensure that kids attending licensed child care are safe, making it harder for working parents to find reliable care, a new policy brief from the Michigan League for Public Policy concludes.

The lack of oversight stems from the high caseloads for state child care inspectors — triple the recommended ratio of 1 worker for every 50 child care programs. Michigan would need to add 140 workers to the 70 now employed to meet that recommended staffing level.

(more…)

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