A news service for the people of Michigan from the Mackinac Center for Public Policy

Some Democratic politicians and other proponents of more funding for K-12 schools held a rally in Ann Arbor. State Rep. Jeff Irwin was quoted in MLive.

"The crisis is real. You see the increased class sizes. You have teachers asking parents for reams of paper."

For the Record says: The crisis is real. But it’s not the cost of paper or the amount taxpayers are spending on K-12 education. Like every other district in the state, the real budget killer for Ann Arbor Public Schools is its employee retirement benefits. In just two years, Ann Arbor’s costs for retiree pension and health insurance jumped from $22.3 million in 2011 to $28.1 million in 2013. That nearly $5 million increase would buy a lot of paper. And retirement pension and health care costs are increasing.

Two women have hit the trail trying to get term limits passed in the city of Grand Rapids. Their efforts could be a barometer of public sentiment as some Lansing politicians discuss the merits of eliminating term limits for state lawmakers.


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