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Five Stories that Matter in Michigan This Week – August 26, 2022

Bringing you five stories that matter in Michigan this week – August 26, 2022. Legal, legislative, and regulatory updates.

  1. Michigan Sees Unemployment Decrease as Jobs Increase

According to recent data released by the Michigan Department of Technology, Management, and Budget, the unemployment rate in the state dropped from 6.2% to 4.2% over a twelve-month period. Michigan also saw a bump in jobs last month, with 3,000 in July.

Why it Matters: Officials point to the increase in job growth and lower unemployment rates as a reflection of the hard work that the government, people, and businesses have put into the economy to shift to a more positive outlook.


  1. Michigan to Deploy $72M in Federally Funded Small Business Loans and Investments

$72 million of funding Michigan received from the federal Small Business Credit Initiative 2.0 is being deployed for loans to small businesses through Michigan Economic Development Corporation capital and lending programs. The MEDC will also invest  up to $75 million in early-stage, technology-based businesses in Michigan through the Small Business Venture Capital Program.

Why it Matters: Michigan’s venture capital and startup ecosystem continues to grow. The amount of venture capital invested in Michigan reached an all-time high in 2021. According to the Michigan Venture Capital Association’s 2022 Impact Report, a record $1.38 billion into 155 companies last year through 161 deals.


  1. MDOT Seeks to Install Automated Cameras in Work Zones

Michigan HB 5750 would allow the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) to install automated cameras in work zones to capture speeders. While the bill sits on the House floor, the road construction industry is getting behind the bill.

Why it Matters: If this bill passes, drivers will need to be aware of the resulting penalties for exceeding the posted speed by 10 mph or greater, which would range from a written warning to a $300 fine.


  1. Gas Prices Continue to Decrease Since Record June 2022 Highs

The American Automobile Association (AAA) reports that the average Michigander is paying just under $4 for a gallon of gas, down from the record high average of $5.22 in June.

Why it Matters:  While gas prices continue to decrease, Michiganders are still paying more per gallon when compared to 2021. Citizens and officials alike will look to continue seeing the downward trend. Spending less at the pump can increase spending in other areas of the economy.


  1. U of M Study Finds that Wind and Solar Industries Could Fully Replace Jobs Lost at U.S. Coal-Fired Power Plants

A recent University of Michigan study found that the wind and solar industries could fully replace the number of lost jobs at U.S. coal-fired power plants that are expected to close to meet emission-reduction targets.

Why it Matters: The recently enacted Inflation Reduction Act includes substantial funding for wind and solar energy tax incentives. The bill is intended to spur growth and investment in clean energy projects across the country. Michigan has recently seen growth in jobs in the energy sector. In fact, the state ranked first in the nation for energy job growth in a recent U.S. Department of Energy report. Michigan added more than 35,000 energy-sector jobs from 2020 to 2021.

Related Practice Groups and Professionals

Business & Tax| Ed Castellani

Labor & Employment | Aaron Davis

Energy, Utilities & Telecommunication | Michael Ashton

Insurance Defense | Emily Vanderlaan