Which state is doing things right?

If tax cuts and privatization were the great elixir for economic recovery that some would like us to think, lots of job providers would be packing up and heading to Alabama to provide high-paying, secure jobs to the populace there.

Or, we could go only as far south as Indiana to witness the Great Lakes version of that model of government. Some have held up Indiana as the state Michigan should emulate.

The fifth edition of the Michigan Future annual report, Michigan’s Transition to a Knowledge-Based Economy, says that when we look at per capita income, the unemployment rate and the percent of residents with incomes below 150% of the poverty level, Minnesota is clearly the Midwest state we want to be more like, not Indiana. (more…)

Bridge: Final arguments on Proposal 5

Proposal 5 is a constitutional amendment to require supermajorities of members of each legislative chamber to approve state tax increases or seek approval from the voters. Tax increases would require the votes of at least 25 members of the 38-member Senate and 73 members of the 110-member House of Representatives. If a tax matter went to a vote of the people, a simple majority would decide the result. For full Bridge coverage of Proposal 5 — and the other statewide ballot proposals this year. October 30, 2012 — Bridge

League joins the SAVE for All campaign

Jan. 2, 2013 triggers automatic across-the-board federal spending cuts, known as sequestration.

Unless Congress acts to avert it, these cuts will amount to reductions of around 8% for many important programs, including student loans, grants and work study; cooling and heating assistance; HIV prevention and testing; domestic violence prevention and services and Head Start. Defense programs will see a 7.5% cut and Medicare provider payments will be reduced by 2%.

The League has been an active proponent of staving off deep cuts under sequestration, and has published a number of advocacy and educational materials to make the case that averting sequestration benefits us all. As part of our effort to promote a more balanced alternative to sequestration, the League joined the Coalition on Human Needs, Wider Opportunities for Women and more than 40 Michigan organizations in adding our support to the Strengthening America’s Values and Economy for All campaign. (more…)

Bridge: Welfare changes have saved state money; fate of ex-recipients unclear

The number of Michigan families getting welfare checks from the state plummeted to the lowest level in more than 40 years just nine months after welfare reform was implemented. Twelve months in, the state is spending nearly $18 million a month less on cash assistance, the cumulative result of reform and an improving economy. October 23, 2012 — Bridge

Detroit Free Press — Opposing points of view on Prop 5: Two-thirds rule could lock state economy int bad policies

For 175 years, Michigan lawmakers have created laws based on a tried-and true deomocratic ideal: majority rule. Except for a few, limited circumstances, majority rule has been the order of the day. But a proposed constitutional amendment on the Nov. 6 ballot and backed by billionaire Manuel (Matty) Moroun could change that by requiring a two-thirds vote, or a supermajority, on new taxes. October 26, 2012 — Detroit Free Press

Detroit News: Recession slaps Michigan’s smaller cities

Job losses, increasing poverty rates and jumps in the need for state aid aren’t unique to urban areas of southeast Michigan as residents in suburban communities also struggle with the pain of the recent recession. October 25, 2012 — The Detroit News

Joining the debate: Let’s talk ‘Fiscal Cliff’

With one presidential debate down and two more to go, we all should be inspired to join the national conversation on domestic policy.

What should be our priorities? Investing in education and job creation, or spending our limited resources on tax breaks for the well-off? Punishing the so-called 47% for their poverty, or extending them a helping hand when they need it the most? Jumping off the “fiscal cliff” to take care of our deficit…Or not? (more…)

Public News Service: One Million Dollars-Plus for Michigan’s Marginalized

When Michigan philanthropist Twink Frey taught elementary school early in her professional life, she encouraged girls to speak up for themselves. Over the years, through her Nokomis foundation, she promoted economic self-sufficiency for women and their families. By the end of 2014, she plans to close the doors of the foundation. However, foundation president Mary Alice Williams says, Frey does not want to leave behind those who are marginalized. Oct. 11, 2012 — Public News Service

100 years, new name, legacy gift

Oct. 11, 2012
Contact: Judy Putnam, Michigan League for Public Policy, 517.487.5436
or Mary Alice Williams, Nokomis Foundation,  616.719.6262

 

League celebrates century mark with legacy gift, new name
Grand Rapids foundation gives permanent endowment, challenge grant

LANSING, Mich. — Twink Frey, founder of the Grand Rapids-based Nokomis Foundation, announced a $1 million permanent endowment and a $500,000 challenge grant to the Michigan League for Public Policy, formerly the Michigan League for Human Services.

The announcement was made at the League’s 100th anniversary celebration at the Michigan Historical Museum in Lansing Wednesday evening.

“The League’s work is built on sound research, reasoned advocacy and strong collaboration to get things done,” Frey said. “That is why it gives me great joy to announce that our first Nokomis Foundation Legacy Gift is awarded to the Michigan League for Public Policy.’’ (more…)

MLive: With $1M gift, sun begins setting on Grand Rapids Nokomis Foundation, champion of feminist causes

After 23 years and millions of dollars spent supporting feminist causes in Greater Grand Rapids and across Michigan, the sun has started to set for the Nokomis Foundation. Oct. 10, 2012 — MLive

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