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.

Deal to fix roads reached in lame duck, but voters must approve new tax

The bipartisan deal aligns with overwhelming public support for road investment across the state, even if it means higher taxes. The deal captures $1.2 billion a year for Michigan’s crumbling transportation infrastructure, but requires voters to approve a 1-cent sales tax increase in May.

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What state House and Senate leaders say they will do first in 2015

Four legislative leaders tell Bridge Magazine what’s on their mind when the new legislative session begins in January.

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Legislature weighs 2 bills to aid wrongly convicted felons

Bipartisan bills to ensure DNA testing is available for some convicted felons and to compensate those who are wrongly convicted remain stalled in Lansing.

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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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What’s cooking in lame duck:

Electoral College voting

Republicans are promising another effort to change the way Michigan electoral votes are apportioned in presidential races, giving Republican candidates an advantage even when most state votes go to a Democrat.

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What’s cooking in lame duck:

Road funding

Gov. Snyder, business groups and state experts agree that more than $1 billion is needed to fix Michigan’s crumbling roads. If an agreement is not brokered in lame duck, the prospects of a deal diminish significantly in January.

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What’s cooking in lame duck:

A-F grades for schools

Michigan currently uses a confusing, color-coded system for grading the performance of its public schools. Some lawmakers want the state to convert to an A-F grading system that they say is easier for parents and educators to understand.

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First meeting of Detroit financial review board on Wednesday

Gov. Rick Snyder appoints New York’s Richard Ravitch to head a nine-member commission that will oversee Detroit’s finances post-bankruptcy.

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Is Michigan now officially a red state?

What was once a state of solid Democratic majorities is undeniably moving in another direction, and has been for two decades. What might lie along that road?

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10 issues to watch in Legislature’s “lame-duck” session

By all accounts, finding money to fix Michigan’s roads is a priority. But what after that? A school bill? Or something nuclear, like changing how we count presidential electoral votes?

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7 ways Tuesday’s election changes Michigan

From governor on down, Republicans intensified their dominance in Lansing. Here’s what the data tell us about Michigan’s future.

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Fewer voted, Snyder wins – here’s how he did it.

Despite claims that voter turnout would be above 2010 levels, perhaps turning the Michigan governor’s race into a toss-up, turnout was actually down across Michigan Tuesday and Republican Gov. Rick Snyder won handily.

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Election Day Playbook: What to watch for tonight

Woody Allen once famously said that “80 percent of success is just showing up.” But Dems would probably settle for half that as they seek to unseat an incumbent governor.

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Election preview: How a handful of House races could shape Michigan’s future

With the state House perhaps up for grabs, uncertainty for tea party candidates and what could be a close race for governor, Lansing’s approach to road funding, education and other key issues is unsettled.

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The governor’s race: where they stand (in 3 minutes or less)

Incumbent Rick Snyder and challenger Mark Schauer differ on a lot of issues. Here’s a primer before you step into the voting booth.

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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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A Bridge primer on how to gauge the credibility of political polls

Michigan voters are being inundated with horse-race poll results showing which candidates are up or down. Before taking those results as gospel, consider the source. Bridge shows you how.

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12 questions to ask about political polls

Judging the independence and reliability of polls during election season can difficult, even for politically astute voters. Here are a few questions to ask to help determine a survey’s credibility.

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