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A “bottlenecker” is someone who uses the power of the government to limit competition in the market and artificially boost their own profits. Bottleneckers use a variety of methods to achieve their goals, including tax loopholes, regulations, occupational licensing requirements, minimum wage laws and many more. The end result when these special interest bottleneckers succeed is fewer choices and higher prices for consumers, fewer job opportunities for workers and less innovation throughout the economy.

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Most Teacher Salaries Are Increasing

Michigan Radio has released a series of stories on teacher pay that it claims is an in-depth look at teacher compensation. But the NPR affiliate didn’t use actual data on teacher salaries available on public databases. Instead, it used surveys of teachers, who responded with numbers on their compensation.  … more

Want More Substitute Teachers? Pay Them More

University of Michigan economist Don Grimes has a simple solution to the substitute teacher shortage: Pay them more. … more

‘Trough Truce’ on Display in Latest Debate on Corporate Welfare

Lawmakers agreed on July 12 to deliver $200 million of taxpayer dollars to businesses selected by politicians, an idea the governor is expected to sign into law.  … more

Need A License To Shampoo Hair For Pay? Michigan Says ‘Yes’

The state of Michigan issued a cease-and-desist order to a Garden City hair braiding shop last year because the owner didn’t have a license to shampoo hair. … more

Novi Community Schools Received 952 Applicants For One Teaching Job

Novi Superintendent Steve Matthews gives his response to whether there is a teacher shortage in Michigan. … more

Despite Claims, There Is No Teacher Shortage in Michigan

A principal at a Michigan public school claimed that the state has a teacher shortage. But that district received on average 41 applicants for every teaching job it advertised. … more

Replace Coal With Solar? We’re Going To Need A Lot Of Acres

When it comes to land use, coal plants are 42 times more efficient than solar panels in producing electricity. … more

House Shelves Effort to Provide Charter School Transportation Vouchers

An attempt by some state House Republicans to ease the financial burden of charter schools that provide transportation for students failed to make it into the final version of the coming year’s education budget.  … more

Newspaper Cites ‘Cuts’ in Case for City Tax Hike — But Spending Is Up, Not Down

The Times Herald newspaper in Port Huron described in dire terms the consequences for the city if voters don’t approve two local property tax hikes. … more

Snyder Calls Legislature's Penalty For No Merit Pay 'Unenforceable'

Gov. Rick Snyder says he regards as “unenforceable” a provision requiring 5 percent of state aid be withheld from a public school district that ignores a law requiring merit pay for high-performing teachers.  … more

The current statewide average cost for a gallon of regular gas was $2.393 as of July 24. That means Michigan has the nation’s 13th-highest gas price. A 7.3-cent tax increase on each gallon of gas, which went into effect earlier this year, is contributing to that rank.

In the Midwest, only Pennsylvania had a higher price ($2.502). South Carolina ($1.985) had the lowest price in the U.S. The national average was $2.284, according to AAA.

… more

For the Record

A short-term substitute teacher at Rockford Public Schools is paid $75 a day. The cost of a full-time teacher's health insurance can cost the district $71 a day. … more
MEA President Steve Cook says teachers have no time to attend professional conferences during the school year. Yet, the MEA holds its own conferences during the school year. And the state law and the union contracts the MEA negotiates mandate professional development time. … more
The Detroit News has granted Michigan Education Association President Steve Cook a regular forum in its editorial section to express his union’s views on the teaching profession in this state. Cook has repeatedly promoted false claims and disingenuous themes about teaching. … more
Kid Rock announced his platform he's considering as a candidate for the U.S. Senate. He didn't mention his stance on corporate welfare. But you may have paid for his beer without drinking it. … more
A city of East Lansing newsletter to residents paints a bleak picture of its finances. But residents should know the city is taking in more money, not less. … more
The new superintendent of Detroit's public schools doesn't want to offer charter schools. But the state's two best elementary/middle schools are charter schools authorized by the troubled school district. … more
Politicians and media are celebrating the city of Detroit's lowest unemployment rate in 17 years. But if the city had the same size labor force it did in May of 2010, its unemployment rate would be 21.4 percent. … more
A teacher told a newspaper young people don't want to be teachers any more and pointed to the low number of applicants at his own district. Except, his district received nearly 30 applicants on average for each teaching opening. … more
Forbes Magazine has just named Detroit developer Dan Gilbert the Richest Person in Michigan. The listing comes just a few weeks after Gov. Rick Snyder signed a law that makes Gilbert’s companies eligible for state payments worth tens of millions of dollars of each year for up to 20 years. … more
Michigan teachers make more today than their predecessors did once you factor in inflation, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. … more