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.

Bipartisan bill to make governor, lawmakers subject to open records law in doubt

After disclosure of government incompetence in Flint, there were passionate calls for Michigan to join 48 other states in making the governor and legislature subject to the state’s public records laws. But House and Senate leaders remain reluctant.

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Flint syndrome:

Welcome to Pennsylvania, where cash-poor cities work together with state emergency managers.

In Part 2, Bridge shows how Pennsylvania and Ohio are taking a different approach to keeping their cities strong




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Flint syndrome:

Revenue tools help Toledo survive through tough times

What Michigan can learn from this Ohio border city, which manages to balance its budget and keep cops on the street despite budget challenges.




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Flint syndrome:

Fewer cops, abandoned parks, and why more cities will crumble unless Michigan changes

When cities lose 2,300 police officers, it’s time for Michigan to look in the mirror.




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Flint syndrome:

Database: How many cops has your town lost?

Plenty of Michigan towns and cities lost 30, 40 or even 50 percent of its police force in the past decade.




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Flint syndrome:

In Wayne, passing the hat for a fire hose

Out of money, the city of Wayne depends on public generosity to maintain public safety. Is this any way to run a government?




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Flint syndrome:

In Battle Creek, a starving Cereal City

The “breakfast capital of the world” is having its lunch eaten by a fraying municipal infrastructure.




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Flint syndrome:

In Saginaw, parks and wreck

Saginaw’s recreation department was eliminated following cuts to state revenue sharing money, which used to be the city’s biggest funding source




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Not waiting for government, philanthropy steps up to help Flint

In an echo of Detroit’s “grand bargain,” 10 Michigan foundations, led by the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, are combining to inject up to $125 million into Flint’s recovery.




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Are tampons as essential as toilet paper? Menstruation goes mainstream

The Michigan Legislature has yet to hold hearings on a measure that would require that tampons be provided free in public schools and state buildings. Other bills would exempt menstrual products from the state sales tax.




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Why on earth is Candice Miller running for county drain commissioner?

The popular congresswoman is turning from Washington to pursue an obscure post that few people ever cared about. Until Flint.




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Not so fast: A bill to raise state speed limits veers off track

A measure to raise speed limits on Michigan highways is intended to align speed laws with how fast people actually drive. It’s not working out that way.




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U.S. Education Secretary criticizes Legislature for inaction on DPS

The failure to come up with more than short-term fixes shows “a lack of concern for people,” says John B. King Jr., who urged a permanent resolution.




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Flint 101: In business schools and seminars, a tough grade for Snyder

Michigan’s CEO governor is the subject of case studies and forums in which the culture in his administration is being compared with oil spills and the Challenger explosion.




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Flint water crisis: Full coverage

Editor’s note: The litany of mistakes that caused lead poisoning in Flint’s drinking water – and responsibility for those gross errors – will be debated for years by investigators, lawyers, politicians, the media and the Michigan public. No one is exactly sure […]

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Felony charges filed against state, city employees in Flint water crisis

The state attorney general promises more will be held responsible for the city’s lead-tainted water, while singling out two DEQ employees, as well as Flint’s water-quality supervisor.




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24 Michigan hospitals were penalized for patient safety gaps. Is there a better measure?

A national ranking system financially punishes hospitals for high rates of hospital-acquired conditions, such as infections. But large, big-city hospitals say their poor scores can be misleading because they deal with patients more susceptible to complications.




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Citizens Research Council marks 100 years of putting government under its microscope

It’s one of the most influential groups you’ve never heard of. Born a century ago, its independent research still drives much of state policymaking.




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