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Research And Reports

At Business Leaders for Michigan, we pride ourselves on developing strategies that are research-driven and fact-based.  Our proposals and strategies are grounded in Michigan’s ongoing economic realities and aimed at bringing new vitality and competitiveness to our state.

Our most recent studies and reports are included below. A list of categories and document titles are available to the right.

Friday
May222015

BLM Poll & Policy Principles Outline Path Forward on MI Road Funding

Statewide Survey Shows Voters Ready to Fund Road Fixes

DETROIT, Mich., May 26, 2015 — Business Leaders for Michigan (BLM) today issued a set of principles and the results of a recent statewide public opinion poll that outline how Michigan’s roads and bridges should be fixed in light of the defeat of Proposal 1. 

The public opinion polling results show Michigan voters want the roads fixed—and they are willing to pay for the work— but policymakers need to shape a less complex proposal. More than half of survey respondents who voted no on Proposal 1 said they believed the initiative gave tax money away to too many other things.  The survey also revealed that nearly 80 percent of voters believe the state’s roads are worse than other states.

“Michigan voters know the roads are bad, and they are willing to fund the right solution for fixing them,” said BLM President & CEO Doug Rothwell.  “The message this survey sends to our state leaders is twofold—deal with this issue quickly, and don’t tie too many extra bells and whistles onto a funding package that should simply be about getting our roads and bridges in better shape.”

The BLM poll showed:

  • More than 87 percent of state voters want the road problem dealt with in the next year.
  • More than 58 percent of state residents support a one-percent sales tax increase, with all additional money dedicated to the state’s roads. (This would require a ballot proposal)
  • Alternatively, 53 percent of state voters would support converting the flat gas tax to a wholesale gas tax.  (This would not require a ballot proposal)
  • Voters are open to cuts as a way to find additional money for roads with the largest percentage of voters favoring cuts to the Corrections budget

BLM also issued principles that the organization believes are essential as the Governor and legislature work to enact a long-term solution to fixing Michigan’s roads and bridges:  The solution should meet the following criteria:

  • It should provide funding sufficient to ensure good quality road and bridge conditions
  • It should require road and bridge builder warranties
  • The funding source should be both sustainable and dedicated
  • The revenue should come from the users of our roads and bridges
  • The solution should not adversely impact other critical priorities that help create jobs, such as job training, higher education and economic development 

“We believe that our principles for a long-term solution align with the polling results and provide guidance as to what an effective solution would look like to have the public’s support,” Rothwell said. “BLM believes such a proposal will require significant new revenue but it could include some budget cuts as long as they don’t negatively impact other critical priorities.” 

The 600-sample telephone survey was conducted in mid-May by the Glengariff Group, Inc  with a margin of error of  +/-4.0% with a 95% level of confidence.

# # #

Download the press release, survey and crosstabs. 

Tuesday
Apr212015

BUSINESS LEADERS ECONOMIC REPORT: In Short-and Long-Term, Job Leaders Continue to be More Optimistic about MI Economy than U.S. Economy

DETROIT, Mich., April 21, 2015Business Leaders for Michigan (BLM), the state’s business roundtable, projects that the Michigan economy will continue to grow and outperform the U.S. economy in the next 6 to 18 months. 

“The good news from this survey is that Michigan’s largest employers continue to be much more optimistic about Michigan’s short- and long-term economic prospects than they were a couple of years ago,“ said Doug Rothwell, BLM President and CEO.  “Job providers continue to be bullish on the state and are backing it up with increased hiring and investment.  Nearly half of Business Leaders for Michigan companies are forecasting increased investment in Michigan over the next six months.” 

Highlights of the survey of Business Leaders for Michigan include:

Fifty-eight percent (58%) of business leaders believe Michigan’s economy will grow while only 37% forecast the U.S. economy will grow over the next six months.  None of the respondents believe Michigan’s economy will be worse in the short term.   

   

• Optimism continues to be high for Michigan’s economy over the long-term, outpacing optimism for the national economy again this quarter with 76% of Michigan’s business leaders believing the state’s economy will grow compared to only 59% of business leaders forecasting the U.S. economy will grow in the next eighteen months. None of the respondents believe Michigan’s economy will be worse in the long term.  

 

The survey also found that almost half of business leaders project their companies will add jobs and make capital investments in Michigan over the next six months.

The results reflect a survey of Business Leaders for Michigan’s 80 members, the state’s largest private sector job providers that represent nearly one-third of the state’s economy. 

Quarterly Economic Outlook Reports are available at businessleadersformichigan.com/research-and-reports.

Click here to download the full report.

Wednesday
Mar252015

The 2015 New Michigan Report: Michigan's Progress in Leveraging Six Opportunities 

Download the full report: New Michigan: The 2015 Report on Michigan's Progress in Leveraging Six Opportunities 

This report was unveiled at Business Leaders for Michigan's 3rd annual Leadership Summit on March 26, 2015, where nearly 500 attendees met to hear about Michigan's recent progress in six areas identified in BLM's New Michigan strategy as having the greatest potential to grow good jobs quickly and a sustainable economy.  The six areas are: engineering, logistics/supply chain, higher education, natural resources, mobility and life sciences.

 

Monday
Feb232015

Business Leaders Economic Forecast: Optimism High for both MI and U.S. Economies in Short and Long Term

Plan more hiring and investment in Michigan this year

DETROIT, Mich., February 23, 2015 – Business Leaders for Michigan (BLM), the state’s business roundtable, projects that both the Michigan and U.S. economies will continue to grow through the next 6 to 18 months.  The forecast is reinforced by nearly half of the state’s largest employers projecting that they plan to increase hiring or make new investments in Michigan this year.  

“Michigan’s largest employers reported much stronger confidence in Michigan’s and the U.S. economy since the third quarter forecast,” said Doug Rothwell, BLM President and CEO.  “The national outlook has improved for a variety of reasons – lower energy prices, good job numbers and America’s relative economic strength compared to other regions.  In Michigan, the November election results had a positive impact on the future outlook.  What’s interesting is that this is the first time in nearly three years that the outlook for the national and state economies are nearly the same.”  

Highlights of the survey of Business Leaders for Michigan include: 

  • Sixty percent (60%) of business leaders believe both the Michigan and U.S. economies will grow in the short-term (the next six months).  None believe that either economy will be worse.

 

  • Nearly the same percentage of business leaders forecast growth over the long-term (the next eighteen months) for Michigan’s and the U.S. economy.  Seventy-six percent (76%) of Michigan’s business leaders believe the state’s economy will continue to grow over the next 18 months and seventy-one percent (71%) of business leaders forecast the U.S. economy will grow over the same time period. 

 

The survey also found that almost half of business leaders project their companies will add jobs in the next six months in Michigan and over 40% believe they will make capital investments in Michigan.

The results reflect a survey of Business Leaders for Michigan’s 80 members, the state’s largest private sector job providers that represent nearly one-third of the state’s economy. 

Quarterly Economic Outlook Reports are available at businessleadersformichigan.com/research-and-reports/

Michigan economic forecastDownload the press release. 

Wednesday
Feb112015

Business Leaders Insights: How Higher Education Can Help Michigan Become a Top Ten State

This report explores the specific contributions made by Michigan’s higher education sector and
discusses the strong and growing need for quality postsecondary options. It builds on recent
recommendations for performance-based funding and provides a multi-pronged approach for
accelerating the pace toward Top Ten educational attainment. This report also details how higher education can help create more jobs in Michigan. 

 

Friday
Jan162015

2014 Benchmarking Report

Thursday
May082014

Michigan Voters: “Let’s Fix Detroit”

Statewide Survey Shows Widespread Support for City’s Recovery

DETROIT, Mich., May 8, 2014  —Business Leaders for Michigan today released the results of a statewide survey showing more than 87 percent of Michigan voters believe revitalizing Detroit is important to the state’s overall economy. 

In addition, more than 45 percent of Michigan voters approve of the way Gov. Snyder has handled the city’s bankruptcy.

“All across Michigan—from the Upper Peninsula and the Thumb to West and Southeast Michigan—we’re seeing strong value being placed on a healthy Detroit,” said Doug Rothwell, President and CEO of Business Leaders for Michigan. “Whatever the solution is at the end of the day, it’s clear that voters know we need a strong Detroit to keep building a vital economy for our entire state.”

The BLM survey also showed that a large margin of voters (66%) also support a 20-year/$350 million funding proposal to be used as a state match to private foundation support as part of an overall deal to protect pension benefits and preserve the DIA’s art collection.

 “Voter support for a Detroit funding proposal is above 50 percent in every region of the state and crosses party lines,” Rothwell said.  “Democrats, Republican, Independents—they all support state involvement and support for Detroit’s fiscal health.”

The 600-sample telephone survey of registered likely Michigan General Election voters was conducted by the Glengariff Group between April 22–26, 2014.  The survey has a margin of error of +/-4.0 percent with a 95 percent level of confidence.

# # #

Download the press release and survey. 

Wednesday
Apr232014

Business Leaders Forecast: In Short- and Long-Term, Job Leaders Continue to be More Optimistic about MI Economy than U.S. Economy 

DETROIT, Mich., April 23, 2014 – Business Leaders for Michigan (BLM), the state’s business roundtable, projects that the Michigan and U.S. economies will grow in the next 6 and 18 months and expects Michigan’s economy to continue to outperform the U.S. economy.

“The good news from this survey is that Michigan’s largest employers continue to be much more optimistic about Michigan’s short- and long-term economic prospects than they were a couple of years ago,” said Doug Rothwell, President and CEO.  “Job providers continue to be bullish on the state’s economic prospects and are backing it up with increased hiring and investment. More than half of Business Leaders for Michigan companies are forecasting increased investment in Michigan over the next six months.”

Highlights of the survey of Business Leaders for Michigan include:

  • Fifty-four percent of business leaders believe Michigan’s economy will grow while only 34% forecast the U.S. economy will grow the next six months.  None believe the economy will get worse over the next six months.

  • Optimism continues to be high for Michigan’s economy in the long-term, outpacing optimism for the national economy with 71% of Michigan’s business leaders believing the state’s economy will grow compared to only 46% of business leaders forecasting the U.S. economy will grow in the next 18 months.

  • Fifty-four percent of business leaders project that their companies will add jobs in the next six months in Michigan and over a half believe they will make capital investments in Michigan.

The results reflect a survey of Business Leaders for Michigan’s 80 executives, the state’s largest private sector job providers that represent nearly one-quarter of the state’s economy. 

Quarterly Economic Outlook Reports are available at businessleadersformichigan.com/research-and-reports.

Thursday
Apr032014

The 2014 Michigan Turnaround Plan 

Compete. Invest. Grow.

Five years after the launch of its strategy for economic change, Business Leaders for Michigan (BLM) unveiled plans for continuing Michigan’s progress toward more jobs, higher income, and a healthy economy. 

Download the 2014 Michigan Turnaround Plan. 

Sunday
Mar092014

Growing a New Michigan: The 2014 Report on Michigan’s Progress in Growing Six Opportunities

Download the full report: Growing a New Michigan: The 2014 Report on Michigan’s Progress in Growing Six Opportunities

 

This report was unveiled at Business Leaders for Michigan's 2nd annual Leadership Summit on March 10, 2014, where nearly 500 attendees met to hear about Michigan's recent progress in six areas identified in BLM’s New Michigan strategy as having the greatest potential to grow good jobs quickly and a sustainable economy.  The six areas are: engineering, logistics/supply chain, higher education, natural resources, mobility and life sciences.