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Michigan bed and breakfast David Gersenson has asked the Mackinac Center Legal Foundation to help him fight a tax for advertising he doesn't want or need.

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City Emails: Christian Farmer's Facebook Post Led to Ban From East Lansing Market

A Facebook post pronouncing a Charlotte farm family’s opposition to hosting same-sex marriages in a facility they operate caused the City of East Lansing to deny their participation in the city's Farmer’s Market this year.  … more

Why Does Michigan License Painters?

Michigan would join the vast majority of states in freeing prospective painters from needless government licensing requirements and fees if it passes proposed changes.  … more

Where's Teacher Shortage School Districts Claim?

For several years public school administrators and teacher unions assisted by voices in the mainstream media have promoted the idea that education reforms in recent years, plus low pay, has created a statewide teacher shortage. … more

Free Press Omits Key CREDO Charter School Finding

As the Detroit Free Press tells it, Michigan should be concerned about a new study that finds for-profit charter operators get worse results than their nonprofit counterparts. But an in-depth analysis of the data used for the study actually shows most Michigan for-profit operators doing significantly better than average. … more

There You Go Again: Teachers Union Spins Misleading Food Stamp Claim

The Michigan Education Association and Steve Cook, its outgoing president, has coordinated a disingenuous campaign on how poorly paid teachers are in this state. … more

Michigan DROPs Big Payouts to Retain State Police Employees

The Michigan State Police has an incentive program that gives employees with 25 years of seniority some $400,000 or more if they agree to stay with the department up to six years. … more

Michigan Wine Taxes Among the Highest in the Region

Michigan’s wine taxes are lower than most states, but still the highest in the region.  … more

Done: With School Pension Reform, State's Big Pension Liabilities Contained

Anthony Randazzo, who directs economic research at the Reason Foundation, called the legislation one of the most innovative pension reforms in the country. … more

Traverse City Government Still Thinking About Internet Project

Jan Geht is the chairman of the board for the utility Traverse City Light & Power. He responded to a Michigan Capitol Confidential article that ran June 19 on the utility’s plan to build out a fiber optic network to every home and business in the city. … more

Government Internet Coming to Traverse City

Traverse City may become the second city in Michigan to own a municipal fiber optic network that sells internet service to residents.  … more

As superintendent of Edwardsburg Public Schools, Sherman Ostrander’s total salary in 2015-16 was $249,400, a $14,400 increase from his 2013-14 pay. That made Ostrander the fourth-most expensive school superintendent in the state of Michigan last year, based on state pension system records. Ostrander had a $161,000 base salary in 2015-16, but had additional payments such as $42,000 that was identified as "supplemental."

The average salary of the teachers in Edwardsburg was $54,487 in 2015-16, about 12 percent below the state average of $61,875. The ceiling for Edwardsburg teacher pay is $70,843, which is only attained after 22 years on the job according to the union contract. The Cass County district in southwest Michigan has an enrollment of 2,726 students with 136 teachers.

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For the Record

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
A college public radio station reported there are "differing views" on whether or not teachers in a public school district had received raises. You know, there's a public database that answers that question. … more
South Lyon Community Schools contributions to the state school employees pension system has increased by $7.2 million since 2010. Yet, one teacher says fixing that "makes no sense." … more
In 2016, protesters shut down a debate on Black Lives Matters at the University of Michigan by rushing into the auditorium and jeering and swearing until the event was canceled. … more
How deep in debt is Michigan’s public school pension system? For every dollar paid to a public school teacher, districts must deposit another 37 cents into the state-run system, mostly to catch up on the accumulated debt caused by years of pension underfunding. … more
The Michigan Association of School Administrators says reforms to the public school employee pension system are working. Meanwhile, the retirement system's unfunded liabilities have grown from $12.0 billion to $29.1 billion from 2010 to 2016. … more
Lt. Gov. Brian Calley needs a heads up on how much public school teachers earn in Michigan. … more
How much is the public school employee pension system underfunded? If it were credit card debt, a person with an income of $21,000 would have $29,100 of debt on their credit card. … more
Holland Public Schools has the support of voters, who overwhelmingly approved two school property tax measures this month. The school district also is better funded than the nearby charter school. … more