MichMash: Whitmer announces energy and housing initiatives at Mackinac Policy Conference

Gongwer News reporter Elena Durnbaugh also joins the episode for a Mackinac Policy Conference roundtable.

Listen to the latest episode of "MichMash"


Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced housing and energy savings are coming to Michigan during the 2024 Mackinac Policy Conference.

MichMash host Cheyna Roth and Gongwer News Service’s Alethia Kasben discuss Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s plans to reduce housing and energy costs for Michiganders. Cheyna also interviews Michigan House Speaker Joe Tate, Attorney General Dana Nessel, and Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist. Gongwer News reporter Elena Durnbaugh also joins the show for a Mackinac roundtable.

In this episode:

  • Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s unveils new program to spur economic development in Michigan.
  • Attorney General Dana Nessel focuses on stopping online scams.
  • House Speaker Joe Tate has economic development as one of the top priorities.
  • Lieutenant Governor Garlin Gilchrist speaks about Michigan’s role in the 2024 presidential election

Durnbaugh commented on this year’s Mackinac Policy Conference being relatively quiet compared to past conferences, where one of the few major announcements was Whitmer’s housing and energy initiative. Durnbaugh said the focus on increasing affordable housing and bringing in businesses is to “grow population because this all ties into the Growing Michigan Together report.”

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Michigan AG Nessel wants stronger consumer data protection laws

Attorney General Dana Nessel has championed protecting people from online scams and protecting personal data. She said accountability is needed to ensure these scams stop happening.

“This is a really significant issue. We have so many seniors that are falling for scams — and it’s not just seniors, it’s really multi-generational,” Nessel said. “These scams are so sophisticated now. And, we need to do everything we possibly can to educate people so that they don’t fall victim for those scams.”

Nessel said the delay for major action is stakeholders aren’t going to hold themselves to certain restrictions and certain guidelines when they aren’t being pushed to.

Michigan House Speaker Joe Tate on his top priorities

One of Michigan House Speaker Joe Tate’s top priorities is to create economic stability in Michigan and lower costs for Michiganders.

“We’re still looking at ways to lower costs for Michigan residents. We know there continues to be a need…Democrats have been leading on that and hearing Michigan residents around that.” 

Although Tate is making economic development a top priority, the first and foremost priority is getting the state budget done ahead of summer.  

Michigan Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist spoke about the presidential election and how Michigan factors in.

“I think with this campaign here this year, you’re going to see the presence of the vice president [Kamala Harris] and the president [Joe Biden] a whole lot in the state of Michigan,” Gilchrist said.

Both President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump have made stops in Michigan during the campaign trail. Gilchrist believes the election will be influenced by whichever party is the most inclusive, stating the Democratic Party is making inclusivity a top priority. 

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  • Hernz Laguerre
    Hernz Laguerre Jr. is a Multimedia Journalist at 101.9 WDET. He is one of the co-host for "Detroit Evening Report," one of the weekend anchors for "Weekend Edition," the producer for our political podcast, "MichMash," and reports on arts, culture and politics.