Granholm: Innovation America Week Underscores Importance of Michigan's Economic Plan

Contact: Michelle Begnoche 517-335-6397

May 11, 2007

LANSING - In her weekly radio address, Governor Jennifer M. Granholm today looked ahead to Innovation America week, May 14-18, saying Michigan's economy depends on continued innovations in technology, business and government.
 
"Innovation is something at which private industry in Michigan has excelled, and it is something we in state government are working hard to foster," Granholm said.  "Even as I speak, Michigan citizens at companies like Google and Hemlock Semiconductor are doing cutting-edge innovating."
 
Granholm noted the 21st Century Jobs Fund is investing in companies doing work in high-tech fields that are growing rapidly.  Innovations in areas like information technology and alternative energy, in which Google and Hemlock Semiconductor are industry leaders, will create jobs in Michigan and help grow the economy.
 
The governor also highlighted the Michigan Promise scholarship, an innovation in the way the state encourages education beyond high school, available for the first time this year.  The scholarship provides $4,000 to high school graduates for further training in college or technical programs in Michigan.
Investment in preparing Michigan's workforce has been cited as a key to growing the economy.

Cutting-edge companies, from United Solar Ovonic in West Michigan to ePrize in metro Detroit, are continuing to invest and grow in Michigan.  These are the sorts of positive signs that led the Kauffman Foundation, in their State New Economy Index comparing states' economies, to rate Michigan as the most improved state since 1999 in terms of preparedness for the knowledge-based economy.

"We thrive best when we come up with new ideas and put them into action," Granholm said. "That's innovation, and it's driving the Michigan economy during Innovation America week and all year round."

The governor's weekly radio address is released each Friday morning and may be heard on broadcast stations across the state through an affiliation with the Michigan Association of Broadcasters.  The address will also be available on the Governor's website on Mondays as a podcast for general distribution to personal MP3 players and home computers.

Broadcasters Note:  Governor Granholm's radio address can be accessed through Sunday evening exclusively through the Members Only page of the Michigan Association of Broadcasters Website.

Publishers Note:  The text of today's address is attached.

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GOVERNOR JENNIFER M. GRANHOLM
Friday, May 11, 2007

Hello, this is Governor Jennifer Granholm.

In a few days, Michigan will be celebrating Innovation America week.  It's a chance for every leader in our state to focus on innovating - on developing new, fresh ideas and turning them into reality.  

And it's something that private industry in Michigan has excelled at. And, it's something we in state government are working hard to foster - being innovative and doing everything we can to make sure Michigan businesses and citizens can be innovative as well.  We will help our state to compete and win in this 21st century economy. 

We can no longer rely on a high school diploma for a good job, nor can we rely on a single industry to fuel our entire economy.  We in Michigan have to innovate by retooling our education system to give our children everything they'll need to compete in this global economy, and retooling our image so that Michigan is more attractive to new and growing business sectors that will diversify our economy.

Even as I speak, Michigan citizens at companies like Google and Hemlock Semiconductor are doing cutting-edge innovating.  They're creating new products and growing new jobs that will drive future economic growth right here in Michigan.  And we've set in motion an aggressive economic plan that will foster more of this innovation to grow the economy.

Michigan's 21st Century Jobs Fund is investing in research and start up companies in high-tech, high-growth industries like the biosciences, and alternative energy and advanced automotive research and design.  With companies choosing Michigan, like United Solar Ovonic in West Michigan and ePrize in metro Detroit, other businesses see Michigan as a great place to invest and innovate.  We're doing whatever we can to make sure that Michigan offers the well-educated workforce and business-friendly climate those companies are hungry for.  

This year, for the first time, the Michigan Promise scholarship will provide $4,000 to every student who graduates from high school and decides to continue their studies in Michigan for at least two years.  And we're putting in place rigorous new curriculum standards to ensure that students are prepared to continue learning beyond high school.

Our innovations - in government and in the private sector - are laying the groundwork to revitalize Michigan's economy.  But you don't have to take my word for it: earlier this year, the State New Economy Index, which compares all of the states in the country, showed that since 1999 Michigan has improved more than any other state in our preparedness for the knowledge-based economy.

I'm working to resolve our state's budget crisis so that we can continue with critical investments and innovations that will power Michigan's economic future because we thrive best when we come up with new ideas and put them into action. That's innovation, and it's driving the Michigan economy during Innovation America week and all year round.

Thank you for listening.

Related Documents
Governor Granholm radio address - full version - 5/11/07 MP3 icon
Text of Radio Address PDF icon