July 29, 2003
FLINT - Governor Jennifer M. Granholm and Lt. Governor John D. Cherry, Jr. today accepted a report from the community group working to address the needs of Genesee County and then responded with several items that state government was prepared to do immediately to assist the region.
"Last fall, I issued a challenge to this region: tell me what state government can do to help you jump-start your economy, improve your schools, and strengthen your health care system," Granholm said. "When a region shows the initiative to help itself, to reinvent itself, and to re-market itself as a magnet region - a place that wants and welcomes new jobs, new businesses, and new residents - this administration is on board 110 percent."
"This blueprint for action and change will help state government deliver the tools that this community needs to succeed," said Lt. Governor Cherry. "This is not a hand-out. The partnership we are announcing today will help the Flint region as it works toward ensuring a prosperous future."
Governor Granholm and Lt. Governor Cherry said that the state will immediately partner with the community in several ways, including:
Earlier in the year, the state already acted on priorities outlined by community leaders. The City of Flint received an $800,305 loan from the MEDC to purchase vacant, inactive properties along Saginaw Street. The funds will help transfer ownership to private developers who will convert the buildings into loft-style apartments with commercial space at the street level.
Other priorities listed in the "Granholm Challenge" report will be reviewed by administration officials and community leaders to determine what can be accomplished through the new partnership between the state and the city.
"These tools are not hand-outs," Governor Granholm said. "The community came together to define their problems, propose solutions, and will continue to work on the issues that are challenges to this community. I am pleased that these first steps have been taken, and I look forward to a partnership with this community to improve the quality of life for this region's citizens."