I moved back to Michigan last fall bucking a trend that started when the auto industry went into a big decline after the salad days of the 90’s .com boom in 2000. The economic problems facing Michigan are well understood but the solutions are much more difficult. There are a lot of people who want to blame it all on the Governor Jennifer Granholm and while there is a lot of room for criticism the facts are that there is little she or any Governor can do to jump start an economy that is wholly and completely beholden to the domestic auto industry which is dead, dead, dead.
She has decided, for better or worse to hold the line on things like education and services over cutting taxes and while you can argue all you want about whether or not the tax rate in MI is too high (it is in the top 20% per capita). The fact is you could cut state taxes in half and it still would not stem the tide of job losses in Michigan.
Frankly what Michigan needs is a way to attract top level entrepreneurial talent to Michigan. We need a plan that will make the state attractive to a highly imaginative, wealthy, and talented pool of individuals who can broaden the economy and bring innovation to the state. Michigan needs a way to make the state a magnet to the kind of people with the creativity to make Michigan an attractive place to live for the movers and shakers of the new millennia. Frankly there is one idea that will do just that.
With a stroke the pen the people of Michigan could make this state just such a place. Overnight, Michigan will be able to boast that we have something that no other state can offer and will attract wealthy and creative individuals in droves. Magically Michigan will be transformed by a population of hard working, driven, individuals who can spruce up this state like no other single group of people can. And what is this magic bullet?
What is this plan that is so simple and will cost the tax payers of Michigan not one thin dime out of their wallet? What could the State of Michigan do that would make it a Mecca for a the kind of people that have proven over and over again that they can turn decay and blight into real estate gold?