Economy

Five dollar bill photo
F Delventhal / Flickr Creative Commons

The two-year-old Lansing Financial Empowerment Center is launching a new program called “Lansing SAVE.” An automatic child savings account will be opened when enrolling in kindergarten in a Lansing public school. Current State talks with Lansing SAVE director Jayme King, and San Francisco Treasurer Jose Cisneros, who started a similar program there.


 Alicia Guevara Warren photo with Mark Bashore
Scott Pohl / WKAR

Unemployment in Michigan is at its lowest point in 14 years, but the state’s economic recovery hasn’t reached everyone yet. In fact, the number of children living in poverty has actually increased since the end of the Great Recession.


Amy Iezzoni photo
Courtesy MSU Department of Horticulture

MSU horticulture professor Amy Iezzoni explains the science behind the state’s cherry industry and her work to bring varieties from around the world to Michigan.


Lansing home demolition
Kevin Lavery / WKAR

Ingham County officials are using a $6-million federal grant to remove more than 200 blighted homes around the city. Current State’s Kevin Lavery talks with county land bank executive director Jeff Burdick.


New report says Michigan short on walkable communities

Jul 2, 2015

A new report indicates that Michigan trails other states in making communities more walkable.


Former Mayor Hollister explains possible BWL sale

Jun 5, 2015
Picture of David Hollister and Virg Bernero
Mark Bashore / WKAR

Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero says the time has come to explore the possibility of selling the city-owned Board of Water and Light. According to a statement provided to Lansing City Pulse, Bernero views potential changes involving the BWL as “a way to address our long term liabilities.” However,  he said any decision at this point, “would be premature.”

http://www.csus.msu.edu/

It’s the first week of June, soon school will be out of session, and the beaches are beckoning. Michigan is expecting a strong summer tourism season in 2015, as families plan trips to all manner of destinations across the Great Lakes State.

The pros and cons of MI prevailing wage

May 28, 2015
Scott Pohl/WKAR

An effort to repeal Michigan’s 50-year old prevailing wage law moved forward this week. On Tuesday, the state board of canvassers approved the form of a citizen petition that could put it to a vote in the state legislature. Meanwhile, the Michigan Senate has already passed such a measure and sent it to the House, but a citizen petition, if approved by the legislature, could not be vetoed by Governor Rick Snyder. The Governor opposes repeal.

Courtesy © General Motors

General Motors has been around for 106 years, and they’ve built a lot of vehicles. In fact, that number has recently surpassed 500-million. Half a billion Chevys, Cadillacs, and, of course, Lansing-built Oldsmobiles, and others. It's an amazing number. That’s far more than any other car company.

Does Michigan need an economic “grand bargain?”

Apr 1, 2015

Last week, the organization Business Leaders for Michigan gathered in Lansing for one of its periodic Leadership Summits. The group’s mission is advance strategies to make Michigan a top ten state for jobs, personal income and a healthy economy. According to Detroit Free Press business columnist Tom Walsh, those in attendance which included the CEOs, Chairpersons and Senior Executive of Michigan’s largest companies and Universities, spent a good deal of time lamenting the lack of a cohesive economic growth agenda for the state.

SXSW to showcase Michigan’s creative economy

Mar 10, 2015

Tens of thousands of music and movie fans will descend on Austin, Texas next week for the South by Southwest festival. The festival’s line up features a number of Michigan musicians, but they won’t be the only ones representing the Mitten state. Joining them will be a team from the arts advocacy group Creative Many, formerly ArtServe.

Simon Power Plant photo
WKAR File Photo

Later this month, Governor Rick Snyder is expected to deliver a special message outlining Michigan’s energy production goals. The Michigan Public Service Commission says the state will experience an energy shortfall as soon as next year, largely due to the planned retirement of nine coal-fired power plants in Michigan in the coming years.

Kevin Lavery/WKAR

Winter is still holding a firm grasp on Michigan and much of the country. In a state surrounded by fresh water, it’s imperative that the Great Lakes and the rivers which feed them are kept open for commerce. That’s the job of the United States Coast Guard, which operates several icebreaking ships on the lakes.

Economic developers often refer to Michigan State University’s FRIB as a “game changer.” The $730-million nuclear science facility, set to launch in around six years with around 400 employees, will be the most powerful rare isotope research site in the world. It will explore the physics of atomic nuclei, with potential applications in medicine, defense and other areas. But what other economic impacts might stem from FRIB and from Niowave, another established particle acceleration firm based in Lansing?

Michigan takes a lot of pride in its nickname as the “comeback” state. And after taking a beating during the Great Recession, Michigan is indeed on the upswing. Forecasts say the state should continue to see economic growth and improvements to the unemployment rate in the next two years. But not everyone is feeling the impact of that recovery yet. Among those left behind are the nearly 550,000 Michigan children living in poverty.

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