Public Sector

Citizens cannot do their job of running their government if they don’t know what their public servants are doing. Bridge will take you beyond the political food fights into the policy decisions that affect everyday life.

Articles

The Michigan counties most vulnerable if Obamacare is repealed

January 12, 2017 | Nancy Derringer, Mike Wilkinson

Nearly a million residents now get healthcare through the Affordable Care Act or Medicaid expansion, coverage that faces an uncertain future if Obamacare is scrapped with no replacement. At highest risk: several counties that voted for Trump.

Repeal Obamacare? Michigan delegation split…and a bit vague

January 12, 2017 | Nancy Derringer, Mike Wilkinson

Thousands of residents in each Michigan congressional district get health insurance through either Medicaid expansion or a government-run exchange. Here’s how their Washington representatives stand on repeal of the Affordable Care Act.

We hope you enjoyed your stay at the county jail. Here’s your bill.

December 13, 2016 | Ted Roelofs

Michigan’s county jails charge inmates up to $50 per day for housing, fees that can saddle ex-offenders with five-figure debt loads.

Voting without an ID? Not a big problem in most of Michigan

December 13, 2016 | Mike Wilkinson

The legislature wants to make it harder to vote without state-approved photo ID. But based on data from the most recent election, few voters did so.

State sheds little light on troubled prison transport firm

November 29, 2016 | Chastity Pratt Dawsey

Michigan uses a for-profit company that’s been accused in the death, injury and abuse of prisoners, while other prisoners have escaped. State prison officials don’t want to talk about it

Steps Michigan can take to make prisoner transportation more secure

November 29, 2016 | Chastity Pratt Dawsey

To reduce injuries, deaths, escapes and lawsuits involving for-profit prison transport companies, state prison officials could consider these recommendations

The price of Michigan's cash bail system

November 15, 2016 | Ted Roelofs

Critics say locking up criminal defendants before trial because they can’t post bond screws the poor while needlessly raising jail costs borne by taxpayers. Is there a better way?

Six ways Tuesday’s election may change Michigan

November 10, 2016 | Ron French, Nancy Derringer

From health insurance costs to road repairs to Rick Snyder losing the last of his mojo, Tuesday’s election is likely to have a huge impact on the Michigan Legislatur

Dewey defeats Truman 2.0, and why so many pollsters were blindsided by Trump

November 10, 2016 | Nancy Derringer

Polling is scientific – really. But its accuracy depends on skillful practices, which can be constrained by outside pressures like time and money.

State House bill takes partisanship out of some primaries

November 10, 2016 | Nancy Derringer

Why do we require local sheriffs, prosecutors and clerks to declare a party affiliation in the primaries? One U.P. representative lobbies to end this practice in a Bridge Q-and-A.

Rural Michigan thumbs nose at Clinton, backs Trump

November 9, 2016 | Mike Wilkinson

Donald Trump steamrolled Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton in midsize to smaller counties across the state, flipping many that voted for President Obama in previous campaigns.

Got polling fever? Five points for surviving until the election results tonight

November 8, 2016 | Ron French

Anxiety-inducing polls are driving Americans to the edge. One expert explains how today’s polls work – and don’t work – and how best to read them

How accurately have polls predicted the presidential race

November 8, 2016 | Ron French

Individual polls can vary to a maddening degree, but the average of final national polls tallied at the RealClearPolitics.com website has been fairly accurate in the past three presidential elections

Trump or Clinton in Mitten? What past elections tell us

November 8, 2016 | Mike Wilkinson

How Michigan may play a pivotal role in presidential election: It could be firewall for Clinton or the fulcrum of a Trump shocker

Promised water infrastructure investment comes only in drips

November 3, 2016 | Chad Selweski

Remember when Flint’s crisis had everybody calling for upgrades to pipes and mains? That’ll be very expensive, and the new Great Lakes Water Authority has lots of other problems to address

In Lansing, where potentially self-serving votes run ‘rampant’

October 27, 2016 | Craig Mauger, Ron French

Michigan’s failure to pass a conflict-of-interest law allows legislators to cast votes even when they appear to have a financial interest.

15 lawmakers and their potential conflicts of interest

October 27, 2016 | Craig Mauger

What’s a conflict of interest, and what isn’t? You decide

Strangest. Election. Ever. Or how choosing a president sank from civics to reality TV

October 25, 2016 | Ron French

Demonic possession and lesbian farmers. Pickle jars and Tic Tacs. Bridge takes a walk of shame through the 2016 presidential campaign.

Why Flint’s lead pipe replacement costs so much, and moves so slowly

October 20, 2016 | Nancy Derringer

How do you replace an entire city’s aging underground infrastructure? One house at a time.

Among rural Trump supporters, an America that has lost its way

October 18, 2016 | Ted Roelofs

Voters in rural areas of northern Michigan and the Upper Peninsula say they have found their blunt savior in Donald Trump. Some are bracing for a fight if he loses

Pages