Our Priorities

Get the fundamentals right

Since 2009, Michigan has made improvements in tax and business climate, fiscal conditions, and business regulation, which has led to a more positive perception of the state. However, business competitiveness has changed over time, and Michigan needs to be nimble in order to compete against other states. 

Talent drives competitiveness now more than ever, and Michigan must do more to make the state attractive to younger generations, including being a welcoming, inclusive place for immigrants and LGBTQ+ and other diverse communities. In addition, the state must sustain its focus on improving infrastructure – everything from water and sewer lines to broadband and EV charging stations – as well as support the cultural gems, recreational opportunities and natural resources that make Michigan a uniquely attractive place to live and work.

Police officer handing out flags and a little boy riding a bike with a pride flag on the back
Photos provided by Visit Detroit and DTE

Key National Metrics


In GDP per Capita


In CEO Business Climate Perception

Why It Matters

When companies are looking to expand or locate in a state, they look at the cost of doing business, the reliability of infrastructure and the quality of life

Detroit skyline and water
Photo provided by Visit Detroit

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Making Progress

Chief Executive Magazine Michigan Ranking

While Michigan has made considerable progress since 2009 thanks to a competitive tax climate, predictable regulations and job growth, other states are growing faster. Michigan’s recent catalytic investments haven’t been in place long enough for us to feel their full impact, and we must continue to stay focused on what it will take to become a Top 10 state.

Recommendations to Get the Fundamentals Right

Ensure a competitive cost of doing business and good governance...

which will continue to make us an attractive place to do business

  • Invest one-time funding in our future: Accelerate our path toward Top 10 by investing in education, training, sites, economic development and infrastructure 
    •  Avoid fiscal cliffs
  • Maintain competitive tax system: Assure a competitive state tax climate that reflects the changing economy 
    • Adopt broad, fair and flat tax policy wherever practical
    • Support tax policy that increases workforce participation (i.e. the Earned Income Tax Credit)
  • Maintain competitive energy costs and reliability: Invest in improvements to electric grid reliability
  • Pay down unfunded liabilities
  • Preserve flexibility in the workplace: ensure that Michigan remains competitive with the fastest growing states by leaving decisions about benefits, wages, schedules and workplace policies to those in the best position to make them – employers and employees
  • Ensure regulatory consistency and cut red tape: drive consistent regulations across the state and processes that are easy to understand, efficient for businesses of all sizes
CoGR Downtown Compete to Win

Invest in infrastructure

  • Prioritize infrastructure investments: Give highest priority to transportation and water system projects based on economic, health, cybersecurity, and safety risks

  • Modernize our transportation system: Build infrastructure that keeps pace with the transition to electric vehicles, automation and other emerging technologies

  • Modernize transportation infrastructure funding: Identify new transportation infrastructure funding streams as traditional sources such as the gas tax continue to decline

  • Expand broadband access: Increase availability of broadband to underserved rural and urban areas

  • Harden infrastructure: Ensure infrastructure can withstand extreme weather events
Blue bridge in Grand Rapids

Make Michigan a destination

for people and employers

Downtown Lansing at night
  • Improve functionality of state government: Champion efforts to increase accountability, transparency, efficiency and civility in state and local government
  • Prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity: In 2023, the Governor signed into law an amendment to the Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act to include LGBTQ+ rights and prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. A longstanding priority of Business Leaders for Michigan, this makes Michigan more competitive and a more welcoming state for people to live and work.
  • Create attractive communities: Improve strategic placemaking projects to attract and retain people and jobs 
    • Tap into the state’s natural beauty and waterways
    • Support downtown and Main Street development strategies