August 25, 2003
Governor Jennifer M. Granholm today took her "manufacturing matters" message to Michigan's capital city. In a roundtable discussion with the Lansing Blue Ribbon Committee to Keep GM, Granholm called the committee's work a model for retaining critical jobs in Michigan's largest industry.
During the past three years, Michigan has lost more than 170,000 manufacturing jobs, or nearly 20 percent of total manufacturing employment. The manufacturing industry employs approximately one out of every five workers in Michigan.
"In Michigan, manufacturing is the muscle of our economy and the backbone of the middle class," Granholm told the committee. "Today, we're here to talk about what we can do to keep these jobs in Michigan. We simply can't wait for an economic recovery to stop the hemorrhaging."
Monday's meeting was a preliminary discussion in advance of a "Manufacturing Matters" summit the Governor will convene this fall with business, labor, and economic leaders. Granholm discussed with the committee the strategies it used to maintain Lansing's manufacturing jobs, the critical role of manufacturing employees, and the lessons learned that might be applied in other communities and similar industries.
Governor Granholm was joined by Michigan Department of Consumer & Industry Services Director and former Lansing Mayor David C. Hollister. Hollister formed the committee in 1997 as part of a successful bid to keep GM in Lansing.