For Immediate Release:
January 17, 2017
Contact: Alex Rossman
LANSING—The Michigan League for Public Policy issued the following statement on Governor Rick Snyder’s 2017 State of the State address. The Flint water crisis and other infrastructure disasters, the problems with the state’s unemployment system, the future of the Affordable Care Act and the Healthy Michigan Plan, and potential tax cuts and revenue strains are all major issues for the League. The statement can be attributed to Gilda Z. Jacobs, president and CEO of the Michigan League for Public Policy.
“The fact remains that residents still cannot drink their water, and the governor and Legislature need to do whatever it takes to fix that now. But with bridges crumbling over our cars, our schools literally falling apart and endangering our kids, and homes sinking into the ground, as the governor noted, we need to address Michigan’s failing infrastructure around the state and prevent any more disasters from happening. That’s going to take bold leadership and I hope the governor will continue to be a strong ally in this effort. And though the governor didn’t come right out and say it, I will—cutting the state income tax and giving away millions or even billions in vital state revenue would be an economic catastrophe, not a catalyst.
“As for Michigan’s economic recovery, many everyday people in Michigan are still not feeling it. Poverty is still high around the state, especially in Northern Michigan and the U.P., and Flint and Detroit have some of the highest poverty rates in the nation for cities their size. Unemployment is down, but that only tells one part of the story, as many people are working and still not able to make ends meet. And 20,000 people looking for work and in need of unemployment assistance were wrongly accused of committing fraud and unfairly denied benefits, even being asked to pay stiff penalties. More needs to be done for the people who are working but are barely getting by.
“Finally, I appreciate the governor’s comments tonight in support of the Healthy Michigan Plan and I trust that he will continue to be a champion for health care and the nearly 1 million Michiganians who have received coverage through the Affordable Care Act as the program comes under fire in Washington in the weeks and months ahead.”
The Michigan League for Public Policy, www.mlpp.org, is a nonprofit policy institute focused on economic opportunity for all. It is the only state-level organization that addresses poverty in a comprehensive way.