Stay Engaged

Simply enter your email below to receive our weekly email:


Ted Nelson is a retired Michigan State Police officer who trained police departments throughout the state on civil asset forfeiture. He believes the practice has been misused and needs to change.

Related Sites

Former Energy Regulator Says Bills Would Establish Energy Monopoly

According to a former chairwoman of the panel that regulates electric utility prices in Michigan, if the current version of House Bill 4298 is enacted electric choice will cease to exist in the state.  … more

Let's Make a (Special) Deal: Legislators Can't Shake the Habit

As 2015 draws to a close, Gov. Rick Snyder and some state lawmakers are excited about yet another sweet-sounding deal that promises the moon in return for special treatment.  … more

Liberty, Prosperity and Humility on Thanksgiving

As we celebrate Thanksgiving today, the words of President George Washington provide some guidance as to why the holiday was formalized, but also reminds us that peace, opportunity and liberty are central to why we should give thanks. … more

Detroit Taking Drastic Actions to Curb Students Missing School

Detroit Public Schools has started a program that sends groups of teachers out into the community to meet with parents. Their purpose is to combat what appears to be the highest absenteeism rate in the state. … more

Lawmakers Rushing Through Special Tax Breaks

For years, bipartisan majorities of Republicans and Democrats approved massive tax credits to select corporations and industries. These credits have caused a nearly $9 billion hole in the state budget. This hole is crushing citizens who must now pay higher taxes for an increasing state budget to fund basic government services such as road maintenance. … more

Detroit Students Missed 1.5 Million Days of School Last Year

The 50,000 students enrolled in the Detroit public school district last year missed a total of 1,539,981 days of school, the equivalent of 30 absences per student. … more

State Pension Plans Are Unsustainable

According to the Detroit Free Press, the city of Detroit must make a $195 million balloon payment to its pension systems in 2024, which is some 71 percent higher than the amount approved in city’s bankruptcy plan. New hiring, delayed pension cuts, and longer life expectancies have left the city responsible for a growing retirement-benefit liability. … more

Detroit Public Schools Bankruptcy Could Cost the State $3.4 Billion

The Detroit Public Schools' $1.3 billion in pension obligations is the major roadblock to the school district filing for bankruptcy, according to a recent state of Michigan analysis. … more

Capping Retirement Contributions Changes Few District Incentives

The state’s 2012 retirement reforms changed the way that pension benefits offered in Michigan school districts are paid. It capped a school district’s contributions to the retirement system, with the state pledging to pay the amounts required above the district cap. But this may not have changed the policy picture as much as legislators hoped. … more

Proposal Would Let Special Needs Children Attend Private School with Public Money

A measure introduced in the Michigan House earlier this year could start the process of making an exception to the state constitution’s ban on taxpayer support for nonpublic schools.  … more

For the Record

A news story posted on Michigan Radio's website reports that more and more U.S. teachers make $100,000 a year. The best teachers should make $100,000 plus a year. But that's not a reality in Michigan, and union contracts are a big reason why. … more
The Center For Michigan’s Bridge magazine described this state’s farming industry as “massive.” Many times the media underestimates just how diverse Michigan’s economy really is while also exaggerating the role of agriculture. … more
Detroit News opinion editor Nolan Finley wrote that the teaching profession is falling out of fashion. Yet, school districts are getting dozens and dozens of applications for many jobs. … more
Rep. Jim Townsend, D-Royal Oak, wrote an op-ed in the Detroit Free Press recently where he claimed some Republicans are out to cut the state budget. The Senate Fiscal Agency says if that's the case, those Republicans have failed big time. The state is spending billions more than when they took control of both houses of the Legislature. … more
MLive columnist Susan Demas is angry over a House-passed proposal to earmark $600 million of state income tax receipts each year to road repairs by 2021. But revenue collections are projected to rise more than $700 million next year alone. If tax collections keep increasing at that rate, state revenues will be pushing $32 billion by the time the House road plan is fully implemented in the 2021-22 fiscal year. … more
Michigan Radio columnist Jack Lessenberry called for all charter schools to be closed. If that were to ever happen, it would force low-income kids out of excellent charter schools and into sub par conventional schools. … more
MLive columnist Tim Skubick said that school districts in debt are not alone in this state. But it should be noted the number of Michigan public school districts that had to borrow to cover regular expenses (“in deficit”) is at a six-year low at 36. This is down from 55 in June of 2013. … more
Bottom line – revenues from Michigan's major taxes are expected to increase more than $920 million next year alone. So there's enough money for the $600 million a year politicians plan to take from the growing tax revenues to spend to fix roads. … more
East Lansing Public Schools announced it had a teaching position open at MacDonald Middle School and it attracted 96 applicants. Many public school officials are saying there is a teacher shortage. You won't see it judging by the number of people applying for teaching jobs around the state. … more
Michigan's push to use renewable energy has cost $3 billion and generated about 8,200 jobs. How much does 8,200 plus jobs mean to Michigan's economy? The state adds and loses a combined 400,000 jobs a quarter. … more