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

Newspapers take notice of revenue threat

July 6, 2015 | Lindsay VanHulle

Proposed legislation would move public notices – hearings, descriptions of property to be sold, election dates, all in tiny type – from print to the Web, and with it money that Michigan’s newspapers can ill-afford to relinquish.

Legislature gets little respect from state voters in survey

July 6, 2015 | Lindsay VanHulle

Democrats disapprove of the work Lansing lawmakers do by a wide margin, but even Republicans were down on the GOP-dominated body.

Dem Rep. Sam Singh finds a lesson for Lansing in the streets of Pamplona

June 16, 2015 | Nancy Derringer

A Democratic representatives finds a legislator can be effective when his party is outnumbered, by turning policymaking into more of a chess game than an all-out assault.

One year later, undocumented immigrant children quietly settling in Michigan

June 2, 2015 | Jacob Wheeler

The anti-immigration protests last summer in Vassar have given way to the more mundane process of placing nearly 200 unaccompanied minors with relatives or foster families. Michigan remains one of the nation’s most welcoming states.

Hispanic immigrants playing more critical role in Michigan’s farm economy

June 2, 2015 | Jacob Wheeler

As residents flee rural areas in Michigan and across the country, Hispanic workers are becoming an even greater force in agricultural production. Nearly 3-in-10 Michigan farms are now owned by non-U.S. citizens.

Political notes from a small island

May 27, 2015 | Craig Ruff

The Detroit Regional Chamber’s three-day policy conference is this week at the Grand Hotel. Bridge has a live stream of all the action.

Reforms could mean fewer prisoners, shorter sentences – and more money for potholes

May 17, 2015 | Ron French

The urgent need for road repairs could be the final push needed for criminal justice reforms to be unveiled Monday by Gov. Rick Snyder.

6 things we learned (and 3 things we didn’t) from Proposal 1 debacle

May 7, 2015 | Ron French

Legislators can’t write ballot proposals. And voters don’t read newspaper endorsements. Those are just two reasons why Proposal 1 failed.

Good roads or bad, Proposal 1 hated equally across Michigan

May 7, 2015 | Nancy Derringer

Think the counties with the poorest roads were more likely to vote yes? Think again. This is being called a historic defeat for a reason.

With roads measure crushed, a search for Plan B

May 6, 2015 | Ted Roelofs

With the resounding defeat of Proposal 1 on Tuesday, it's unclear how Michigan's deteriorating roads will be fixed.

It’s not too late to master the basics of Proposal 1. Here’s a 5-minute version.

May 4, 2015 | Bridge Staff

Latecomers to the road-funding debate who plan to vote Tuesday may want to bone up on the basics.

Todd Courser hits Lansing like a cannonball

April 28, 2015 | Nancy Derringer

The Lapeer freshman representative and tea party favorite puts faith, family and limited government at the front of his agenda. So why are fellow Republicans running for cover?

Michigan police big and small defend use of military gear

April 23, 2015 | Mike Wilkinson

A Bridge database tracks Humvees to bandages, snowshoes to sleeping bags, rifles to ratchet straps, given by U.S. military to local police.

Is state’s defense of prison rape allegations another $100 million gamble?

April 16, 2015 | Ron French

Critics question the state’s aggressive defense of a lawsuit by young inmates who say prison officials failed to protect them from sexual assaults. An earlier suit by women inmates cost the state $100 million, far more than taxpayers would have paid had the state settled the case earlier.

What NOT to post on Facebook: Jokes about prison rape, when you’re in charge of preventing prison rape

April 16, 2015 | Ted Roelofs

A social media post by a prison rape coordinator may serve to underscore allegations that the state is insensitive to young inmates’ rape claims.

A program to give young offenders a second chance is sending many to prison

April 16, 2015 | Ron French

A program meant to help young, nonviolent offenders get back on track is instead sending more to prison, where they say sexual assault is rampant.

Similar accounts in suit over alleged teen prison rapes pose challenge to state's defense

April 14, 2015 | Ted Roelofs

The full deposition testimony of seven teenage inmates is notable for its graphic consistency, producing a damning portrait of institutional indifference within Michigan’s prisons.

‘New fish’ ‒ One teen inmate’s account of alleged sexual assault

April 14, 2015 | Ted Roelofs

The inmate known as John Doe 3 says the abuse began from the moment he entered adult prison.

Plan B or no Plan B, here’s what happens if road proposal fails

April 9, 2015 | Nancy Derringer

The governor is telling voters there’s no alternative to Proposal 1. Lawmakers counter that there’s always a Plan B, but fear it might be worse.

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