In just the past few months, Michigan Capitol Confidential has broken a plethora of stories showing the need for government scrutiny.

  • The SEIU has taken with the help of some Michigan government officials nearly $30 million in union dues from self-employed home health care aides and their disabled clients.
  • Hardly any tenured public school teachers in Michigan are ever removed from their jobs — even when guilty of criminal activity.
  • State government in Michigan has committed hundreds of millions of dollars to special tax favors and corporate welfare subsidies for “green jobs” that never materialize.

Stories exposing these and other questionable policies demonstrate the importance of government transparency. March 11 – 17 is Sunshine Week, which shines a light on the need for openness in government and against the “closed books” mentality that plagues many public entities.

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According to its website, Sunshine Week is “a national initiative to promote a dialogue about the importance of open government and freedom of information. Participants include news media, civic groups, libraries, nonprofits, schools and others interested in the public's right to know.”

The Mackinac Center and Michigan Capitol Confidential are giving life to these principles, and will keep pressing for more openness in government through investigative journalism, new media reporting and vigorous pursuit of Freedom of Information Act requests, regardless of which officials and which political party is embarrassed by the abuses and misguided policies we expose.

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See also:

Michigan Capitol Confidential FOIA Coverage

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Detroit Prep is a top-rated and economically and racially diverse charter school in the city. It's growth means it needs to move out from a church basement and into a new location. Nearby is a former Detroit Public Schools building, sitting empty for years. But, worried about competition, the public school district refused to sell. For years, district and local government officials in Detroit had worked to block public charter schools. They pushed legislation at the Michigan Capitol to hinder them, refused to sell to them, transferred surplus buildings from the district to the city government and imposed deed restrictions on property sales to private developers. All of it was aimed to hinder or even prevent charter school choice outside the confines of the Detroit school district.

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