Michigan Prosperity Agenda: Revenue Sharing and the Importance of Investing in Communities
Program Explores How to Make a Better Michigan
Most people should already be familiar with the fact that Michigan’s cities have battled tremendous monetary cutbacks and financial hardship in recent years. This is due in large part to how the state has diverted $6.2 billion in revenue sharing away from our communities since 2003. But there is a bright side to the situation. Despite this revenue sharing diversion, there are still some very positive things going on in the area of placemaking and creating vibrant places in Michigan. The importance of investing in communities and how some Michigan communities are doing it is what we talk about on this month’s Prosperity Agenda radio show on News/Talk 760 WJR. My co-host is Marjory Raymer, editor of the Flint Journal and mlive.com/flint and our guests are Samantha Harkins, director of state affairs for the Michigan Municipal League; Ferndale Mayor David Coulter; and Patrice Frey, President and CEO of the National Main Street Center.
The hour-long radio program is hosted by Dan Gilmartin, Executive Director and CEO of the Michigan Municipal League (the League). The show is sponsored by the League and the Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA).
THIS MONTH’S SHOW airs at 7 p.m. April 23, 2014 on News/Talk 760 WJR, and you can also listen now by clicking the links below.Hear us talk about a new “PlacePlans” effort taking hold in communities throughout Michigan. Read more about the League’s vision for Michigan here and here.
- Dan Gilmartin explains this month’s show. (1:19)
Marjory Raymer is the editor of The Flint Journal and for MLive Media Group in Flint. She joined The Flint Journal in 2000 and nine years later became the first woman named the newsroom’s top editor. During her tenure, The Flint Journal has been honored with three national awards for online breaking news coverage and more than 110 state awards, including the Michigan Press Association's Newspaper of the Year and Public Service Award recipient earlier this year. She discusses how the City of Flint has lost about $55 million in revenue sharing in the last decade and what getting that money could have meant for the community.
- Marjory talks about her excitement over the Grand Traverse Greenway Trail project that will connect key parts of Flint. (7:13)
Samantha Harkins, director of state affairs for the Michigan Municipal League, discusses the revenue sharing issue and what communities have been able to do despite losing billions of anticipated revenue.
- There are so many great examples of placemaking in Michigan, and while it’s hard to pick her favorite Harkins does discuss a Michigan community she most recently fell in love with. Find out what she says. (9:55)
Patrice Frey is President and CEO of the National Main Street Center, where she oversees the Center’s work, offering technical assistance, research, advocacy, and education and training opportunities for Main Street’s network of approximately 1,100 communities. She discusses why the 2014 National Main Street Conference has decided to come to Detroit next month.
- Frey talks about how the conference will have a number of mobile workshops showcasing a variety of communities and areas in and around Detroit. Find out what areas the more than 3,000 attendees will be going. (9:59)
Dave Coulter is Mayor of Ferndale, and was previously an Oakland County Commissioner for four terms. Coulter talks about how Ferndale is home to a National Main Street Award-winning downtown district with an eclectic mix of businesses.
- Coulter discusses a recent Crain’s Detroit Business article that focused on the business growth taking place in Ferndale. What’s the secret of the community’s success? Find out by listening. (9:26)