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Legislature + lobbyists is a match made with money

Willie Sutton reputedly said he robbed banks because that’s where the money was. Freshmen lawmakers new to the ways and means of Lansing find the same principle applies when replenishing their campaign accounts mere weeks after taking the oath. Where the money […]

Read Peter Luke's article

Learning from prison cuts in other states

(Originally published Feb. 3, 2011) When Judge Steven Alm was appointed to a Honolulu felony court in 2004, it didn’t take long before the new jurist identified what he considered a major flaw in the system: Offenders on probation repeatedly flouted simple […]

Read Melissa Preddy's article

Why Snyder’s government reform plan may sound familiar

(Originally published March 22, 2011) Gov. Rick Snyder’s speech Monday aimed at reinventing local government actually reinvented (or at least reiterated) numerous reform ideas offered in recent years by the Center for Michigan and other public interest groups. Examples: • Intensifying local […]

Read John Bebow's article

Redistricting: How political map-making leaves voters with uncompetitive, pre-determined elections

(Originally published Feb. 10, 2011) In the past decade, voters decided 664 races for seats in the Michigan Legislature. The majority of those races were never in question. Millions of votes didn’t really matter. Districts for many state representatives and senators are […]

Read John Bebow's article

Momentum builds at Capitol for teacher tenure changes

(Originally published June 21, 2011) Over the past two years, the State Tenure Commission has sided with the school district in every case where the district sought to fire a teacher specifically for poor performance in the classroom. All four.   And […]

Read Chris Andrews's article

School Daze: Michigan’s incredible shrinking school year

(Originally published March 12, 2009) Imagine if the United States completely flopped in the next Olympics. Imagine if countries like Japan and South Korea dominated the medal count and it was obvious those athletes had simply out-worked, out-practiced, and out-performed ours. The […]

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School Daze II: How some districts keep 180 days a top priority

(Originally published Jan. 19, 2011) In the Milan School District, students spend more days in class than their peers in most other districts for a simple reason: district leaders have made it an important priority. In the 2008-2009 school year, Milan was […]

Read Chris Andrews's article

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