Jelinek joins fight for jobs

Published 3:38 pm Thursday, February 10, 2005

By Staff
LANSING - Sen. Ron Jelinek, R-Three Oaks, said he was encouraged to hear the governor's commitment to work with the Legislature on creating jobs and spurring Michigan's economy during her State of the State Address Tuesday night.
Meanwhile, the Senate Republicans renewed their pledge to fight for every Michigan job and said they stand ready to work with the governor to accomplish what is best for Michigan residents.
While the nation's economic recovery is well underway, families in Michigan are still facing the prospect of an unemployment check instead of a regular paycheck.
In 2004, Michigan was the only state with a net job loss. Michigan and one other state had the highest unemployment rates in the nation at 7.3 percent in December; nearly two percent above the national unemployment rate.
The governor's proposal on allowing the state to invest $2 billion in bond money sends up some major red flags to Senate Republicans. Borrowing money for ongoing operating expenses is not a solution to the problem and could create legal issues.
The GOP vision for Michigan includes providing a job opportunity for anyone who wants to work and support their family. It includes a great education for every student and affordable health care for families and senior citizens.
Jelinek agreed, citing the recently announced "New Economy" legislative initiative. The package is focused on improving Michigan's economy by boosting the state's high-tech sector.
While Michigan has made major investments in life sciences over the past four years, the state is not truly reaping the economic benefits of that investment. A 2004 study ranked Michigan 37th in the nation in risk capital and infrastructure, just above states like Wyoming, Kansas, Iowa and Montana, whose economies rely heavily on natural resources.
Unveiled last week, Republicans plan to introduce the legislation in the coming weeks, as well as legislation designed to improve agriculture across the state of Michigan.
Jelinek continued that some of the governor's proposals outlined in her speech have merit, but he needs to see details, not just general ideas.