Business Bridge

In partnership with Crain’s Detroit Business, Business Bridge covers the intersection of business, politics and policy across Michigan.

Articles

Pension debt could give new Detroit Schools a stumbling start

October 25, 2015 | Lindsay VanHulle

Gov. Snyder’s plan for a new Detroit school district would include nearly $100 million in red ink due to debt from employee pensions.

Proposed state bill has doctors, nurses at odds over who can give anesthesia

October 25, 2015 | Lindsay VanHulle

The Senate bill is the latest effort to give highly trained nurses more independence to carry out medical care, particularly in rural areas where there is a shortage of physicians.

Michigan Supreme Court hears arguments on prevailing wage law

October 19, 2015 | Lindsay VanHulle

At issue is whether municipalities have the power to exert local control over what wages they pay to contractors.

Michigan utilities want to end renewable energy mandate

October 12, 2015 | Lindsay VanHulle

Does the success of the state energy mandate make it a no-brainer to keep? Or is it proof that it is no longer needed?

The politics of breast milk, and who can profit

October 5, 2015 | Lindsay VanHulle

Legislation in Lansing wades into the commercialization of breast milk, and a growing battle between nonprofit milk banks and new, for-profit companies willing to pay nursing mothers.

State: Michigan’s energy efficiency program should save customers over $4 billion

October 5, 2015 | Lindsay VanHulle

The report from the Michigan Public Service Commission says customers get more than a 4-to-1 return on efficiency mandates. The report comes as the legislature is considering phasing out the mandates by 2019.

MEDC adjusts its belt

September 20, 2015 | Lindsay VanHulle

State agency mulls long-term strategy after budget, job cuts

State road construction industry seeks funding certainty

September 20, 2015 | Lindsay VanHulle

A patchwork of temporary roads fixes makes companies hesitant to invest heavily in Michigan

Traverse City’s dilemma: Why this hot vacation mecca can’t attract young workers

September 13, 2015 | Lindsay VanHulle

Traverse City fears a labor shortage as stagnant wages and the high price of housing are keeping talented millennials from moving in.

Lansing battle lines being drawn with competing energy bills

September 8, 2015 | Lindsay VanHulle

A House bill expected to be introduced this week would offer more protections for renewable energy producers. Supporters of a competing Senate measure say their approach takes Michigan out of the process of picking winners and losers.

Swearing, sex and the path to a roads deal

August 31, 2015 | Lindsay VanHulle

Lansing is getting rid of antiquated criminal laws and addressing the Courser and Gamrat mess. But a roads fix must wait until the fall.

Online state lottery games spark feud with tribal casino operators

August 24, 2015 | Lindsay VanHulle

Gun Lake Tribe stops payments to protest state’s expansion into online gaming, which the tribe says violates compact. If other tribes follow suit, MEDC funding put at risk.

Michigan municipalities learn tough lessons on tax incentives

August 24, 2015 | Lindsay VanHulle

Some communities have learned that extending economic incentives to companies can carry risks

Pew: Lessons from Detroit’s bankruptcy for other struggling cities

August 18, 2015 | Lindsay VanHulle

The Pew Charitable Trusts argues that early state intervention is critical when municipal fiscal troubles first appear.

Severe weather takes toll on Michigan tourism

August 10, 2015 | Lindsay VanHulle

A wicked recent storm along with several harsh winters have hurt the bottom line for lodging, retail, fruit crops in northern vacation retreats.

1-in-10 Michigan workers now collecting disability

August 6, 2015 | Chad Halcom

Disability rolls surge past 500,000 workers, who are unlikely to return to the workforce. Critics claim Michigan’s system is too soft.

Expanding benefit rolls drains federal trust fund reserves

August 6, 2015 | Chad Halcom

At current rates, money marked for workers with long-term disabilities will be exhausted by the 2016.

MSU survey: Consumer confidence in state near all-time high

July 30, 2015 | Tom Henderson

Snyder’s approval rating slips while Obama’s climbs.

Community colleges seek state OK to give bachelor’s degrees

July 19, 2015 | Lindsay VanHulle

Senate bill to expand the four-year degree offerings by community colleges faces stiff opposition from the state’s 15 public universities.

Should electric vehicle owners pay higher fees to help fund state roads?

July 19, 2015 | Lindsay VanHulle

A state House bill is proposing EV owners pay up to $100 more in registration fees to help fund the state’s roads plan. Automakers counter that buyers should be given incentives to buy alternative-fuel cars, not penalties.

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