DTE Energy is a regulated monopoly that provides electricity to 2.2 million customers in southeastern Michigan and gas to 1.2 million customers around the state. The company is also a major player in the expansion of industrial wind turbine sites in rural counties.
In 2012, DTE posted net profits of $666 million, an amount that rose to $866 million in 2016. From 2012 to 2016, the company posted $3.8 billion in cumulative profits. Despite these earnings, the company imposed a $245 million rate increase in 2016, which state regulators later dialed back to $184.3 million.

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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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