Ted Roelofs worked for the Grand Rapids Press for 30 years, where he covered everything from politics to social services to military affairs. He has earned numerous awards, including for work in Albania during the 1999 Kosovo refugee crisis.

Michigan ranks in bottom half of state nationally in care for homeless children

A national report finds nearly 80,000 homeless children in Michigan, with a lack of state planning to deal with the problem.

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Higher death rates, medical bills for Michigan motorcyclists without helmets

Government and medical studies reveal motorcyclists are more likely to die or be seriously injured if they are not wearing helmets in a crash, raising questions about the 2012 repeal of Michigan’s helmet law. A Republican Legislature sees no reason to take up the issue.

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Michigan’s economic comeback promising, but incomplete

Amid promising signs of growth, Michigan still has not reached its peak GDP from a decade ago.

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Grand Rapids growth invites civic pride

The Grand Rapids region is strong in virtually every economic sector, and is the closest of any Michigan region to returning to pre-recession levels.

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Lansing and Ann Arbor staging a battle of economic might

The Lansing and Ann Arbor regions are closely matched in GDP. Ann Arbor is just ahead in 2013. But will it last?

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Recovering Detroit region still drives the state

The Detroit region, digging out from a tough decade, still wields manufacturing might. But its future may well hinge on health care.

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Election cash: How Super-PACs and ‘dark money’ are dominating state races

Record outside spending in the U.S. Senate race, and armored truck-loads of cash from unknown donors. Welcome to Michigan elections.

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Michigan tax facts, part 9: What will happen to your taxes in the future?

Ten years from now, will you be paying more, less, or the same amount of Michigan taxes that you pay today? Four experienced bean counters offer very different predictions.

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Michigan tax facts, part 10: Sifting through fuzzy tax math on the campaign trail

Political candidates love to offer chickens in every pot. The specific recipes for how they’ll pay for their campaign promises are far more elusive. This year is no different on the Michigan campaign trail.

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Michigan tax facts, part 7: Will your city hall and local schools go bankrupt?

Local governments dodged a bullet with passage of the Proposal 1 tax reform in August. But many still aren’t secure. Do they need more money? Should they change how they do business? Or both?

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Michigan tax facts, part 8: What would Richard Headlee think today?

A generation ago, an insurance executive fashioned himself a role as the defender of Michigan taxpayers. Voters approved the Headlee Amendment, which placed a ceiling on the growth of government. Today, Michigan government spending is billions of dollars under the cap Richard Headlee fought for.

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Michigan tax facts, part 6: How much do taxes matter for business location?

Voters often get wooed by campaign promises of tax cuts to improve the economy and attract business. Are there results behind the sound bites?

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Special report: 10 things every voter should know about Michigan taxes

The tools you need to provide your own fact-driven answer to that question.

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Michigan tax facts, part 2: Who wants what in the long war over taxes

Wildly different views of the future drive the ongoing intellectual war over tax policy in Michigan.

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Robots enter Flint, change lives

New robotics center at Flint’s Kettering University opens doors for minority students.

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How robotics changed one girl’s path

Flint Hamady High School student De’Shondria Bedenfield went from quiet student to champ with a milling machine after becoming hooked by robotics.

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Free speech goes begging in Grand Rapids

Across Michigan, communities are trying to craft restrictions on panhandling that don’t run afoul of First Amendment protections.

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A day on the streets with a young panhandler

The story behind one man’s sign.

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