Making Michigan truly a ‘comeback state’

Added May 30th, 2013 by Judy Putnam | Email This Entry Email This Entry
Judy Putnam

As the annual Mackinac Policy Conference continues, we’re sure to hear a lot about Michigan as the “comeback state.” (Just check out #MPC13 on Twitter and Gov. Rick Snyder, who tweets under @onetoughnerd.)

Sponsored by the Detroit Chamber of Commerce, the conference brings together business people and politicians on Mackinac Island for an annual confab on policy.

It’s good news that Michigan’s economy is showing signs of renewal after a brutal recession.  But that recovery is incredibly uneven. The phrase, ‘A rising tide lifts all boats,’’ is often used. It’s a nice image, but let’s remember that many families have been left high and dry, and it’s going to take a long time for the rising tide to reach them.

Consider recent news from the League and national partners:

Despite the obvious need, Michigan has slashed public assistance, food assistance, unemployment benefits, tax credits for low-income working families and disability assistance as well as education funding, financial aid and tax credits for donations to universities, food banks and other charities.

Kids – our future workforce — do better when they have enough to eat and a roof over their heads. Let’s not dust our hands off and say, “The economy’s on the mend.’ Instead, let’s redouble the efforts to support kids and families in need during this slow recovery. Only then, when everyone is making progress, can we truly claim to  be the ‘comeback state.’

— Judy Putnam

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