Mike Wilkinson joined us from The Detroit News as Bridge’s computer-assisted reporting specialist. Mike performed a similar role at the News, where his work showed, for instance, that just under half of all Detroit property owners paid their annual tax bills. He was also part of a team at The Blade of Toledo that won national honors, including the National Headliner and Gerald Loeb awards, for exposing widespread political corruption in a scandal that came to be known as Coingate. The stories led to political reform in Ohio state government. You can reach Mike via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call him at 313-815-7068.
The former vice president crushed Bernie Sanders during balloting Tuesday, as turnout surged with no-reason absentee voting. The only potential concern for Biden: He didn’t win as thoroughly in urban areas as Hillary Clinton did in 2016.
One year after blasting pork-barrel spending, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signs onto a larger spending deal that includes $37 million in small community grants. Among other things, the money will pay for a Detroit Symphony Orchestra Hall elevator and $1 million for the auto show.
Michigan has changed since Bernie Sanders won the presidential primary in 2016. The economy is far better. But many remain left behind, and could be a receptive audience to Sanders’ calls for massive change.
Bernie Sanders stunned pollsters in 2016 when he narrowly topped Hillary Clinton in Michigan’s Democratic presidential primary. How did he do it?Could he do it again?
March 3, 2020 | Mike Wilkinson
Michigan school districts are profiting from taxpayer-funded online academies that teach home-schoolers electives like ice skating and animal husbandry. The programs are legal, but the state is cracking down, alleging some districts are overcharging taxpayers.
March 3, 2020 | Mike Wilkinson
As enrollment declines, Michigan districts are turning to two-year kindergarten programs, placing teachers in private schools and academies for home-schoolers.
After two years of decline, Detroit water shutoffs jumped 44 percent last year, as the city stopped water to 1 in 9 homes. Most stayed off a month or more, and nearly 10,000 homes still don’t have service.
With the Michigan primary just weeks away, Bridge Magazine is unveiling its 2020 Fact Guide to help frame the debate and separate rhetoric from facts.
Education funding in Michigan hasn’t kept up with other states, and lawmakers are trying a host of reforms to boost outcomes that, while improving, lag much of the nation.
Michigan has vastly improved access to state-funded preschool, but gaps remain. Should the state spend another $400 million to make its Great Start Readiness Program universal?
More Michigan graduates than ever have college degrees. But disinvestment in higher education has prompted skyrocketing tuition, leaving graduates with big debts.
In the past five years, total employment and personal income have grown by double-digits in Michigan, while poverty has plunged. But not all news is good.
The loss of 300,000 well-paying manufacturing jobs means that, even though, Michigan wages have climbed over the past few years, they’re still less than the nationwide average.
Like much of the Midwest, Michigan is more obese and less healthy than the rest of the nation. The state has terrific rates of insurance, immunization and primary care physicians, though, making the state’s overall health a bit of a puzzle.
Flint was a wake-up call about access to clean water. Since that crisis, numerous new threats have emerged to Michigan’s waterways, from PFAS to corporate extractions.
Even with new funding to pay for roads, Michigan’s infrastructure is aging rapidly. Solutions are not only expensive but politically divisive in an era of divided government.
More than $25 billion in tax breaks go to businesses and Michigan is considered the nation’s 12th most business-friendly tax state. And even though tax bills increase, the amount of money flowing into state coffers is restricted.
The average Michigan state government worker is a woman who makes $64,000 and works in either corrections or health and human services. That’s just one takeaway from a vast enterprise with a $60B budget.
Michigan municipalities cut staff big-time to get through the last 20 years, including 22,000 fewer law-enforcement positions. And while municipalities most have recovered, the state still considers 139 cities, 36 townships and 15 villages financially distressed.
Michigan has only 16 electoral votes among the 538 in the Electoral College that decides the U.S. presidency. But the state is expected to be a key battleground for Democrats and President Donald Trump.